Tonight we (Me and Andy) fully disassembled my trike and began constructing the box that it will fit into. It took us a couple hours and we put quite a bit of thought into the construction of the box before we made any cuts.
First we removed the front tires and the boom and folded down the handle bars. I realize it just looks like a heap of bike parts but we'd like to think there is a method to the heap:
Then we removed the rear wheel and rear derailleur. We boxed up the derailleur and taped it to the frame because we figured it is the most fragile piece:
Then we measured the whole thing a couple times before we made the cuts for construction of our oversized bike box. We are combining two bike boxes to make one large box:
So the outcome of the evening is the pieces of our box and a heap of bike parts. Tomorrow night we will put it all together.
Our finished product will be approximately 62"x27"x14" (103" length+width+height)and I'm not sure how it will fare within the Southwest Airlines baggage policy.
Here is the policy for bicycles:
"Non-motorized Bicycles, including Bike Friday and Co-Pilot, will be accepted in substitution of a free piece of checked baggage at no additional charge provided the bicycle is properly packaged and the box containing the bicycle fits within the 62-inch sizing limit and weighs 50 lbs or less . (Maximum weight is 50 pounds and maximum size is 62 inches (length + width + height) per checked piece of luggage). The handlebars, kickstand, and pedals must be removed and placed inside the box. A $50.00 each-way charge applies to bicycles that don’t meet the above criteria. Bicycles packaged in a cardboard box or soft-sided case will be transported as a conditionally accepted item."
The above makes it sound like everything's cool as long as I pay $50. However there is this:
"Weight and Size Allowance: Maximum weight is 50 pounds and maximum size is 62 inches (length + width + height) per checked piece of luggage. Effective June 17, 2009, overweight items from 51 to 100 pounds and oversized items in excess of 62 inches but not more than 80 inches (e.g.; surfboards, bicycles, vaulting poles) will be accepted for a charge of $50 per item."
The 80 inch max makes me a bit nervous...I'll give them a call tomorrow and I'll make sure to ask about my vaulting pole while I have them on the line.