How to ship a frame/fork without damage. A perennial problem.!
I've never shipped a frame or bike by FEDEX, perhaps that will be a happy new experience for me, but I have sent many hundreds of freshly repainted frames by UPS and never had one damaged so far (knock on wood). Of course, I've always gone to great pains to wrap all the tubes with foam and pack the frame and fork so it can't move around. Cardboard bike and frame boxes do deteriorate with each shipment so sometimes, when I've been shipping frames back and forth to an OE frame builder, I reach a point when I have to toss them (the boxes).
I'm wondering if it wouldn't be worthwhile for list members to rent Trico Iron Cases even though there would be the additional cost of shipping the case back and forth and paying the 30# oversize charge. Some of the bikes memtioned on this list are simply irreplaceable so the extra cost might be warranted. Iron Cases are almost industractable (but I suppose one could get crushed by a forklift or truck running over it). Does anyone know of shops/suppliers that rent them. BTW, if an Iron Case is kept in its cardboard shipping carton, there is MORE insurance protection by UPS (something about them having to pay if an inner AND outer carton are breached - maybe someone else can explain this fully). Anyone have good or bad experiences with these cases?
I'm also wondering if a slightly downsized "Iron Case" specifically designed to hold just a frame and fork might be viable in the market. When I first started building and painting in the early 60's, I had some cardboard frame boxes made which consisted of an inside box to hold the frame and fork and an outside box separated by 8 expanded polystyrene "Koh's Korners" which centered the inside box within the outside box with a gap of about 1" all the way around. I never had a single damage problem with these but they were not cheap. Do these exist in the market or is there a market for them today?