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Old 07-26-2002, 08:07 AM   #1
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Default Packing tips for air travel with RC

Wanted to get tips and hints from those of you who travel to events by air about how you pack your RC stuff. Do you use those roll-on tubs, regular suitcases, etc. If you use anything special, where did you get it? I plan to carry on my car and radio but will need to check batts, motors, charger, lathe, solder iron, tools. Thanks for your help.
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Old 07-26-2002, 08:52 AM   #2
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Cooldad- ship the batteries, tool boxes, etc by UPS or Fedex. Just carry on stuff they won't find suspicious. Also, if you try to take too much heavy stuff on the plane, they'll charge you for it. I think the weight limit is like 75lbs per bag. Remember, all that electronic equiment looks like bomb making materials to them... seriously.
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Old 07-26-2002, 09:24 AM   #3
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You may not get on board with those batts... they look like little sticks for dynomite. I would check everything in... you are allowed 2 20x20x20in. boxes of 70lbs. each max.
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Old 07-26-2002, 09:35 AM   #4
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Well, I once carried a few battery packs on an airplane... but that was before 9/11.
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Old 07-26-2002, 09:51 AM   #5
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yea me too...befor 9/11... I carried the car, radio gear, charger and batts. etc.
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Old 07-26-2002, 10:51 AM   #6
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Forget motor sprays, and other flamable chemicals too. I think the best way would be to have it all shipped.

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Old 07-26-2002, 11:36 AM   #7
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You sould expect no problems transporting your car stuff on a airline...

I just got done with stock nats in Utah.
We had to go though Salt lake city airport, its has the most advance security in the county. ( cus of the winter Olympic`s )
Flamables,( motor spray) sould not be carry on board. You sould also take out the baterry`s inside your radio or remove the transponder.
You can expect a inspection, like other`s said ,the X-ray of your car stuff will make-um look inside.
other wise its no big deal.

Now if your are thinking of transporting fireworks or have store fireworks inside your lugage ....
Bad , your stuff will not make the flight.....
They run a patch of material all over your stuff & you.
If they detect nitrate`s , you are gona be gone over & over untill they are done . This includes fertilizer`s, matches, ect...

As far as what`s the best suitcase.

Most use upright tote bags ... about $50 at wallmart
others use the bags desige for R/c stuff , trinity`s car bag,ect.
The plastic totes are great as well.

You want something with wheels, cus all that car stuff can be heavy .You don`t want to have to carry it around the airport.

Have fun !!!!
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Old 07-29-2002, 04:01 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by BigDogRacing
Remember, all that electronic equiment looks like bomb making materials to them... seriously.


Whenever I use one of our light rail trains I always get held up at the turnstile. Guards here don't know much about RC and those stick type batteries look like bomb. RX's look like detonators and the TX is mistaken for a gun...

I converted all my batts to saddle packs because of this.
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Old 07-29-2002, 04:28 AM   #9
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I travelled two weeks after 9/11 and packed everything in the luggage and carried-on my car and radio. No probs here......but I also worked for AA.....so that may have helped. To be honest they still didn't treat me any different when passing through security.
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Old 07-29-2002, 05:28 AM   #10
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I have travelled many times on planes with all my RC gear. (Not to or within the US though)

I always use one large reinforced suitcase with wheels and a handle. Like Wild Cherry says wheels are heaven when walking around airports and to or from other forms of transport :-)
Also ensure you can carry/pull all your stuff by yourself in one trip, as you obviously cannot leave some of your luggage lying around unattended while you make a trip!

I carry on an aluminum case (briefcase size) containing things like:
* power supply
* fans
* power board
* lathe
* setup tools/jigs/board
* soldering iron power supply (not the iron)
* callipers....

I take a back pack with:
* batteries
* motors
* transmitter
* clothes etc
They security always want to have a look at the batteries, sometimes the motors to (I carry them both in the GM battery and motors cases. After showing security the batteries (saddles) and explaining what they are, they're happy and then I'm airborne!

Do NOT take the following items as carry-on:
* aerosols
* anything flammable
* glue
* loc-tite
* paste or fluids for soldering
* anything that is sharp, long and pointy or that resembles a knife, e.g.: soldering iron, tweak station components, tools like screwdrivers, allen wrenches, scissors etc.

I usually pack tire treatments that may not be available at the race meet into my checked luggage, I am not sure if that is strictly allowed though, so please don't tell anyone! I usually try to buy or acquire motor cleaner at the event, asking locals/friends who are not flying to the event to bring some is usually the best option.

Weight distribution is a major factor when flying. I carry on the batteries and motors as stated so they are not weighing down my suitcase. The metal carry case has my power (small) supply and soldering power supply that are the other main weighty items. The max weight limit for carry on is usually 7Kg (~16pounds?), I have often been a little over here but they never seem to weigh them……

I usually partially disassemble my car(s) and pack them in cardboard boxes in my suitcase. I pack the shells together with clothes as padding. Sometimes I ask at check-in for a “Fragile” sticker to be put on my suitcase but I am still not sure if that causes the bags to be treated worse or better!!

Hope this helps........
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Old 07-29-2002, 01:35 PM   #11
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Fully discharge your battery packs and tape up any all connections. Do you know how screwed you would be if your packs set fire to the cargo compartment on a commercial airline?

If people are getting in huge trouble for accidently starting wildfires, then you would be hung out to dry, in this post 9/11 world.

If you don't own a discharger, at least dump them by hooking them up to a spare motor.

I always tell people to treat their battery packs like loaded guns. If you are sloppy with them, you will wreck them, and possibly have them explode or burn things. There are warnings on them for a reason.

I would personally remove my RX from the car, and pack it with my TX, and send it as baggage. I would carry my car on with me.

Foam cases would be the way to go. I would also label them as "radio control racing equipment" so that the morons who run the x-ray equipment don't have to think too hard, and come up with some wrong terrorist idea about what are in your cases.

Once my sister tried to take her flute on board the plane with her, and they thought that it might be a gun or bomb.

A veteran of 18 trans-atlantic flights.

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Old 07-30-2002, 08:03 PM   #12
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Thanks to all who replied. Great advice and info.
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