Packing

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Ralph & Robinson have been packed for some days, awaiting their trip “home” (& their participation in the BWC 2013). We’re almost ready to go, just “fine tuning” what & where everything else will go. The pressure’s off really, because the theory seems to have worked out, with my expectation that we could get by with just a Brompton bike bag & a single cabin bag each.

For more than a year I’ve been looking at bag systems, wondering how to cope with the air travel baggage allowances for economy patrons such as us. Buying Robinson & inheriting a Brompton B bag was the start but I later realised that the bag was an earlier model & was an extremely tight fit (maybe from the Brompton SWB-days?) let alone having much space for travel clothes, etc. Researching other choices wasn’t very encouraging but then I noticed the new Vincita bag for Brompton (B132 model). This bag from Thailand seemed a similar style to the Brompton B bag – but much larger. It was even thought by some users to be too big & the manufacturer had also produced a more tapered-shape bag. My preference was for the earlier bag & as it was still available, I crossed my fingers & ordered one. If it worked out, the plus point was going to be that it seemed astonishingly good value; even with a large air-freight cost it was half the price of a B bag! When it arrived it looked like it was going to be ideal; good quality, spacious & well-engineered?

When Ralph was obtained, it came with a (well-worn) B&W hard-case. For me, one factor against using it was the issue of storing/transporting it while traveling around by rental car. Once Ralph was equipped with Ergon grips & come the final planning for a trip to the UK, the possible use of the case was resolved when I found that the lid wouldn’t close – I was going to be up for some bike disassembly! Back online to Vincita & an order for another B132 bag, this time not bothering to request the earlier large bag & expecting that the later bag would be suitable.

So, this week saw everything come together & I was rather relieved that there are no last-minute dramas or changes of plan! My slightly smaller Vincita bag has Ralph (wearing a Brompton cover), the small Axiom on-bike luggage (containing various spares & bits), 2 pair of shoes, a lightweight suit-bag (containing clothes – definitely no suit!) & a couple of small stuff-sacks. Robinson (also wearing a Brompton cover) in the other Vincita has a Brompton C bag (with frame & bag separated) & a myriad of packing cells!? (It probably wouldn’t be safe to describe what my wife is packing – but it seems to have fitted?) Onto the scales & they’re in the range of 26-27 kgs – fitting within the checked-luggage allowances for our planned flights. Oh, & the bags comply with the 158cm dimensioning restrictions! Rather weighty & bulky but then it’s not just the BWC we’re heading for!

Oh, & how’s the Brompton packing been arranged? Most travelers seem to recommend removing the saddle so off it came & got bubble-wrapped & placed between the front end of the wheels, with straps containing the saddle & tensioning the wheels together (with partially deflated tyres – just in case?). Next the hinge bolts & Brompfication clamps (& springs) came off & got bagged (although I wondered about some advice to just do up the clamp bolts? It seemed risky for any major strike to the bolt head area & so I decided that naked was best – but added padding to the hinge faces). Padding was also attached (via tape, straps or removable cable ties) to the handle bars, seat-post top, LH crank arm (remembering that I run MKS removable pedals), along with a large piece of dense foam placed inside the bag on the RH side (ie extra padding for the handle bars?). That’s it – now to trust the Vincita padding & clothing (in a suit-bag placed inside the bag on the LH side).

Our adventure awaits…

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8 thoughts on “Packing

  1. shaun moran 21/07/2013 at 06:07 Reply

    Hi – Where did you order the Vincita bag from (In Australia?) I had a look at their website and there was no online ordering or Australian distributors ?

    • Aussie on a Brompton 21/07/2013 at 11:07 Reply

      Hmmm… an interesting experience Shaun! My first order attempts were very confusing but the answer is Facebook & PayPal. ie Post on Facebook for what you want & they’ll probably respond with the info of price (in Baht) & shipping options. Then you can just pay via PayPal & await the arrival? A bit different but it seems to work! (twice for me)

    • vincitathailand 16/11/2013 at 14:34 Reply

      Hi,
      Thanks for your interest.
      Vincita Transport bags for Brompton are now available at our e-store:
      vincitabikebag.tictail.com
      Shipping to Asia and Australia 🙂

  2. mark sydenham 21/07/2013 at 17:03 Reply

    I agree with the removal of the hinge bolts and clamps. Further to additional advise given, I was cleaning my Brompton several days after this post and perceived there to be greater risk for damage if they were left in……..A helpful post on baggage and packing…….Mark

  3. Brommie 23/07/2013 at 22:55 Reply

    Neat packaging! I’ll be eager to see how the trip goes for Ralph and Robinson as well as for their riders.

    I think I’d be tempted to sew a plain black flap over that very nice-looking bicycle logo, though . . .

    • Aussie on a Brompton 30/07/2013 at 01:59 Reply

      Ta Brommie,
      Saw a B bag with Brompton inside at the BWC Brompton stand & the bag’s definitely bigger than my old B bag – so it’d be interesting to compare with the later Vincita bag?
      The label has so far helped with departures out of Sydney & Singapore (staff handling them differently) but I believe in some countries it’s best to hide the fact that its a bike?

  4. vincitathailand 16/11/2013 at 14:40 Reply

    Hi

    Thank you for this nice review of our bags! We appreciate your feedback and we will be promoting your blog on our Facebook page. For your next order with us via http://vincitabikebag.tictail.com, we will be more than happy to give you 10% as a return for your review.

    Have a nice day!

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