Just went to PR. used a reg day bag (meant for one board) stuffed a 6'0 and a 6'4 along with 2 kiteboards. aside for the minimal padding in the board bag I stuffed one towel by the nose and one towel by the tail.... boards were fine
Finally shelling the money to bring my favorite board to Central America with me rather than then play the fingers crossed games like I've done last couple of times when renting. I've heard the horror stories of dings and clean breaks from checking the board in but I wanna hear the success stories now. I was planing on wrapping with bubble tape and towels and putting into my board bag. Not sure if I'm overdoing it but better safe then sorry, right? I'm taking jet blue. Also they don't give you static if you stuff some extra clothes in there I hope, do they? Whatever the case may experience knows best so I'd appreciate some knowledge. Thanks...
Have done many trips to the DR, Nica, Barbados. Usually take bigger boards, so I go with the coffin.
The pipe insulation is truly a rail saver. Use blue painter's tape to affix it to your board; anything else will leave tape marks on your stick if you're going through the tropic airports (board bag spends hours sitting in hot areas like cargo hold & tarmac). Also, don't use the pipe wrap that is self-sticking; buddy of mine did that on a trip to Barbados & then spent 3 hours slowly peeling the black goo off the board.
Here's how most boards (including mine, until I learned) get smashed: the board gets smashed on the deck by the corners of suitcase getting heaved into the cargo hold of the plane. I utilize a layer of cardboard over the deck to disperse the impact of the suitcase corner. Works.
As others have noted, the tail & tip padding is crucial.
I don't like putting towels & clothing in there as padding for two reasons: those items can easily shift, exposing your board, and it makes the bag heavy as hell. It's a pain in the neck to lug a coffin through airports, so make the thing as light as you can.
Make sure you lock that beast with those little TSA padlocks. I made the mistake of not locking my coffin on one trip to the DR & the only thing that arrived was a board....fins, wax, leashes, everything else had been locusted by the baggage monkeys.
Be very, very nice to the check-in agents. Because the fees are 150 usd on AA per board. And you do not want to give the airline reps any cause to open that bag & start counting sticks.
Everyone has hit the main points but a couple additional ones
I use that cellophane wrap (it is like saran wrap) to hold the pipe isulation on - no glue on it so it is easy to get off
Going to Nica I usually stuff partially deflated soccer balls at the nose and tail of coffin bag to protect those commonly damaged areas. When I get to the coast I reinflate with a small portable hand pump and give em to the kids - they always get a big smile
I took two boards to Hawaii in a single Ocean Earth coffin bag and wrapped both boards in bubble wrap. I didn't get any dings from baggage handling. I can't say the same for the reef at Haleiwa though.
Last edited by StuckinVA; Jan 31, 2011 at 03:08 AM.