Tips for Shipping a Motorcycle

motorcycle on country road

If you can’t drive your motorcycle to where it needs to go, you are going to need to ship it. The question is, what do you need to do to get your motorcycle ready to ship? Before using the professionals over at Cratex to build you a custom crate, there is some preparation that needs to be done. Follow these steps for shipping a motorcycle.

Drain all of the Fluids

The first thing to do is to drain all of the fluids out of the motorcycle. This means gas, oil, hydraulic fluid or anything else that might flow. Freight carriers will refuse to pick up a motor vehicle that has any fluids in it, as they can be considered to be hazards. There can also be complicated rules for carrying a gassed up motorcycle across borders that the freight handler probably does not wish to navigate. Avoid all the trouble by draining everything.

If you are unsure how to do this yourself, get help. Professional service centers or garages can do it for a fee. Just make sure you have a way to get your motorcycle back home after having the fluids drained, as you won’t be able to drive it.

Reduce the Tire Pressure

Once you get all the fluids drained, you will need to take some of the air out of the tires. This will help the frame of the bike better absorb shocks from bumps and vibrations that it is going to experience during the trip. It will also help preserve the tires by giving them more flexibility. Don’t deflate them the entire way; this could actually damage the tire. Just take the pressure down enough to make them a little softer than normal but capable of supporting the weight of the motorcycle.

Remove the Battery

Next, remove the battery from your motorcycle. This will prevent damage to the battery should the freight company be taking your bike through adverse weather. It will also prevent electrical systems from accidently turning on and draining the battery during transit. Finally, some batteries contain hazardous materials that can be tricky for freight companies to carry.

Get a Custom Crate Made

Once you have the motorcycle completely drained, the battery removed and the tire pressure down it is time to crate it up. This is the most important step. Most freight carriers, no matter the mode, will not take a motorcycle that is not crated up. It is up to you to make sure that this is done properly.

When crating the bike, you need to make sure that it is incapable of falling over during transit. This means securing it to the sides of the crate to keep it upright.

Cratex group has years of experience in designing and building custom crates for just this purpose. Contact us today for an estimate on a crate for your motorcycle!