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Shipping motorcycles - crating cost

TouringComet

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I just found out my employer will not cover the cost of shipping my motorcycles as part of my job relocation. The company that is coordinating the shipping has quoted me $2900 per bike just for crating. Is that the going rate? Seems high to me.

Unfortunately, I will not be taking both Vins, just the Comet.

I just had the Comet tank repaired and painted. To help protect it while in transit, I pulled out a NOS John Ulver leather tank cover, note it doesn't have holes cut out for the fuel and oil fillers. I bought two back in the '80s, and used one quite a bit on the Shadow while riding across country to a couple of North American rallies. When installed correctly they fit nice and tight.

DSC02537.jpgDSC02532.jpg
 

bmetcalf

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Seems like a lot. 8 hrs of labor @ $50 is only $400. Overseas shipping sometimes requires treated wood to make sure no insects come along. I'm pretty sure plywood qualifies, but your framing members might be more of a challenge. The standard is
ISPM-15. You could call around to industrial type lumber yards and see if they have heat treated or lumber with a bug stamp.
 

Dinny

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Crating

I shipped my twin from the UK to San Francisco last year, for the crating and airfrieght I paid 995GBP of which 150GPB was the crating. The bike was put in a BMW shipping crate that was made up of a wood palet and heavywieght cardboard outer stapled to a wood frame. It was strapped down by 4 straps and wrapped in bubblewrap. It arrived without any damage. The cardboard had an inspection hatch in it so customs could check contents without unpacking which was a great idea. I did not have to clean the inside of the mudguards/ chainguard or drain the oil. I was even told less than 1/4 tank of fuel was ok which was a big surprise but this was drainned.

Don't ask about insurance or import duties as that made the shipping seem cheap!

Hope this helps

Mark
 

vince998

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Seems like a lot. 8 hrs of labor @ $50 is only $400. Overseas shipping sometimes requires treated wood to make sure no insects come along. I'm pretty sure plywood qualifies, but your framing members might be more of a challenge. The standard is
ISPM-15. You could call around to industrial type lumber yards and see if they have heat treated or lumber with a bug stamp.

A lot of the modern Euro pallets are already treated.
You can make up a few struts from one crate.
 

TouringComet

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Just got an updated quote, $1350 per bike. That's more like it, both Vins will be going after all. Even though the first person that called me specifically said $5800 for both, I wonder if the $2900 was really for both and not just one. Here are both bikes ready for crating, with the cables and wiring off the handlebars, plus the speedo on the twin removed. The handlebars will come off while in the crate.
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Albervin

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Steve, it may be worth asking about air freight. No crating required (from here), just ride in, weighbridge and onto a pallet. One of the UK guys airfreighted his bike from the UK to Canada for about £100 more than the sea freight but only had a day with the bike in transit instead of nearly a month. He did not have to crate the bike either.
 

ClassicBiker

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When I bought my Comet from Lanivet motors in Cornwall and had them ship here to me in Detroit they re-used an old Yamaha shipping frame and box. I say frame as it was constructed of 1/8" steel angle to support and secure the bike and covered with a Yamaha cardboard box. It cost me $1000.00 door to door plus brokerage fee and import duty.
Steven
 

Robert Watson

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For some reason it seems de rigeur that bikes in and out of the US must be crated. I shipped my bike to Europe last year by air, uncrated, for less than your crating cost Steve. Have you asked an airline?? Lufthhansa or some other non US carrier might be a better try??
 

TouringComet

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The 40' shipping container is free to me, my employer is paying for that, and there was plenty of room, we only used about 60%. Mitch Talcove and I spent about $1600 each to ship by air in 1999 via Lufthansa (which required crating), so less than 1400 each one way isn't too bad for 12 years later.
 
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mercurycrest

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Steve,
If you have a 40 footer, can you claim the bikes as something like sports or recreational equipment and keep them registered in California as if you were a tourist?
Or.... You could tell your employer to piss off...... they're part of your family.
a brave with other people's lives, John:p
 
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