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...
went down to El Salvador this past august...used foam pipe insulators for the board rails then wrapped the hell out of em with bubble wrap. then put each board in a sock. probably over did it but it was my first time flying with boards and they didnt get dinged at all.
it's better to over do it then the opposite & end up w/ busted boards.
here's what i do:
start w/ pipe insulation on the rails, then (if the board has glassed on fins, like my bonzers do), a little block of foam over the fins for impact (mostly side impact) protection, then stick the board in a sock. i then wrap the nose & tail areas of the board w/ towels. i throw all my extra crap, like rashguards, trunks, reef booties, etc...around the boards for additional padding. i also have a cut up noddle (you know, those things old ladies float around the pool on) & i stick pieces of that in the bag around the nose & tail areas. strap them in (most coffins have internal tie-downs) & pray! that's the basic method i've employed going to costa rica, panama, california, & the maldives w/ great results. worst i've gotten is a nice long pressure ding on the bottom of a board coming back from the maldives this past summer. looks like the edge of a suitcase scraped along it. such is life.
that's packing them into a 7' wheeled coffin. since never travel w/ fewer then 2 boards, anything less then that didn't makes sense to me when i bought it. if you're schlepping 1 board, you can prob. get away w/ one of those shoulder-strap jobs that's kinda like a day bag w/ extra padding. hope you don't have to walk too much, tho. the wheels are a nice touch when you're doing the bataan death march.
The key to it is starting with a quality travel case and there is only two companies I trust. Destination Surf and DaKine. I have a DS 7 6" Double Taco and the most protection I've used on the boards in the bags is some home made foam nose and tail blocks (which DS now makes). Otherwise I have just put my boards in their day bags. I've never had a problem and the thing has been all over the world. I know I don't want to lug around a hundred pound travel bag filled with crap.
I agree with all stated above by the Po. Only think I have to add it look into thse inflateable nose and tail guard I belive Dakine makes them or FCS I can remeber I know guys who use them with great results . You can also get one of the inflatable travel bags too
I flew jet blue air in December and could not have had a better trip. Waived the board few on the way there and 50 bucks on the way back. I had two boards. Put pipe insulator on the rails and towels folded on the deck/bottom. No dings at all.
I just flew continental to and from Puerto Rico and I didn't have any problems... a little pipe insulation and a lot of clothes strategically placed will do it. Just be smart and plan it out, you'll be fine.
I have traveled to CR with my boards a couple times on Continental and have never had a problem with damage. I have the dakine world traveler and just pack all my clothes and towels around the board in the bag. Definitely worth it to bring your own board! Enjoy your trip!
Good advice all around...Thanks, I like the pipe insulator on the rails idea and the comments that more is better...I thought maybe I was being too paranoid but that's my baby I'll be putting into the hands of the airline underworld so why take chances... Actually heading to home depot right now. Super stoked to have my board there with me this time, no excuses now, because I had her made with those peaks of Costa Rica in mind just after my last trip. Definitely gonna hit up Panama this go around and maybe even Nicaragua if I can swing it in a couple of weeks. Thanks again...Pura Vida