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Has anyone had any experience shipping bikes? I finally bought a used Monster, but I have to have it shipped (it's too far) and I'm terrified of a negligent carrier and the bike getting damaged in transit. Any tips/past experiences would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

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I work in the LTL trucking business, which is what this would be. Best way to ship it is, drain the gas (required by most, good idea otherwise), and package it well. DO NOT SHIP IT LOOSE, UNPROTECTED. Claims with any carrier are a battle of wits, and improper packaging is the first thing we look at. Best bet is to spend the money and crate it up, fully enclosed in 1/2 plywood. New bikes come in shipping crates, with a frame and cover. H/D's are an excellent shipping container. Hondas are shipped nice, but not as good as HD's. You might be able to get one from a bike dealership for use, I know the HD dealer here did this. Some might arrange shipping, too; afterall they get the bikes shipped into them. Granted the cycle company pays and arranges the freight, but some carriers have discounts for returns from the dealerships. Otherwise, you're going to have to use an online shipping brokerage such as freightquote.com or something to that effect. A 400 pound bike shipped regionally (600 miles or so) will be a couple hundred. Longer ditances will be a bit higher. Discounts are to be asked for, I would shoot for a 65% discount if it is well crated. Bring cash or certified check as nobody wants a check. Some take credit cards, too. Call around, and ship it only to the nearest terminal for customer pickup, provided they have a ramp at that terminal. Otherwise, ship it to an industrial business with docks and a ramp that does business with carriers daily ie your workplace or a friends workplace. Provide a cell phone, name, and home phone to the shipping company on the bill of lading. Understand any and all damages on used bikes will not be covered by a company unless obviously damaged (ie the crate is demolished). There is no way to prove the damage was not there to begin with and we do not pay concealed damage. Notate any and all damages on the delivery receipt, and DO NOT HAVE THEM LEAVE IT WITHOUT SIGNATURE. If it is beat up and you sign for it without notation, you are screwed. If you do notate the damages, you will need to file a claim with the carrier, unless you use a brokerage which takes care of all of that for you. Strongly suggest using a brokerage; better price and service.
 
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