Skip to main content full screen background image

Shipping Tips

CyclArt has shipped and received thousands of frames and hundreds of complete bicycles. Some of our best accounts are thousands of miles away. Over the years, there have been very few damaged or lost shipments, all of which were covered by insurance. We must attribute this fine record principally to the people of United Parcel Service, and Federal Express, but also to the laws of physics. A racing frame is so strong in relation to its weight that given reasonable packaging, it is very resistant to damage. Complete bicycles, especially heavy types do require careful packaging, but it is not a daunting task. Remember most bicycles were shipped to to their original retailer, they're used to it!

We use UPS for return shipping in the 48 states and the USPS for shipment to Alaska, Hawaii and most international destinations. For shipment to us you can use the carrier of your choice.

Most shipping services charge by weight, except for packages over a certain size where a minimum charge applies. Shippers call this "dimensional weight". Size is determined by a formula of length + girth (measure longest side plus 2X the height and width.) There are usually two oversize categories from 84" to 108" which fits most frames and 108" to 130" which fits most bicycles. Smaller packages cost less to ship.

Here is a link to a UPS page explaining this:Oversize packages

Over 130" must use alternate carriers. For tandems or other large bikes over the 130 inch size use bus lines or Amtrak to the Oceanside, CA station. We will pick it up there.

Greyhound Package Express  

Amtrak Package Express

To package a Frame:

Remove all parts except those to be serviced by CyclArt. DO NOT STRIP PAINT.

Obtain a frame sized carton. Bike shops are generally glad to give they away. It's a good idea to get at least two for each bike or frame you plan to ship. That way if your bike or frame is larger than the box, you can telescope two together to make a strong, larger box.

Protect your rear hub spacing with a old large flange hub, or other spacer. The object here is to prevent the dropouts from being pressed together and if your frame has a derailleur hanger and long dropouts, to prevent an impact to the derailleur hanger, possibly closing the axle slot. 

If the headset has been removed, wrap fork in about 10 pages of newspaper and tape it securely to seat stays, dropouts up. The threaded portion should be between the rear axle and if your fork curves, the curve will be toward the center of the frame.

Now lay the frame on the large side of the box to check for  fit. It is best to allow a least 2 inches on all sides for cushion. It is not necessary to cushion the centers of the tubes, just the points where the frame touches or comes close to the box. Cushioning may be accomplished several ways. Wadding newspaper and taping to the frame is one way. Bubble wrap around the "corners" of the frame is another. Pipe insulation works well. Masking tape is strong enough to hold wrapping material and will not require major surgery to remove. Another approach is to cut your second box into long strips, the width of the box and make a make a ring of cardboard around the perimeter of the frame.

Place the wrapped frame in the box and add cardboard or more newspaper to cushion the rear dropout and prevent sliding inside the box. Don't worry about weight of shipping material since all packages over 84" are charged at a 30 lb. minimum. Even so, shipping from the Western states is under $50 and only $70 from the East coast for most frames (complete bikes cost more due to the larger shipping size). Attach a note of instructions with your contact info and any parts securely to the frame. Be sure to list on any parts sent.

Address box on top flap only:
CyclArt / HIA Velo
2201 Brookwood Drive #108
Little Rock, AR 72201

Purchase insurance from your shipping carrier. In the case of UPS the first $100 is free and each additional $100 is only $0.75.

Ground service takes about one day for each 800 miles. Faster air service is available.

When your frame is returned, we will include your email address in our shipping log and UPS will contact you directly with tracking and deliver information. The driver will attempt to deliver the package for three consecutive working days. If you are not home, you may leave instructions requesting that your package be held at the local UPS station for pick up or left with a neighbor. If someone is not generally home to receive packages, consider using a business for shipping address.

CyclArt Shipping Kits: For $40 all necessary shipping materials are sent right to your door! Call (760) 599-1015 for details.