What is the Motorcycle Crate Shipping?
When it comes to getting your motorcycle shipped from one location to another, it is paramount that you go for an auto transport company that offers options Tough as they may look, motorcycles are delicate machines. They are even more sensitive when shipping one to a client, transporting it to a collector’s warehouse or to a motor show. The motorcycle needs to arrive to the destination in perfect condition. There are various options for shipping motorcycles, which include open air transport, enclosed transport, door to door transport, and terminal to terminal. You can read more about what each shipping option constitutes here. In either of these options, you can seek what is called motorcycle crate shipping.
What exactly is crate shipping?
Crate shipping refers to the mode in which motorcycles are transported. Look at it like wrapping a household item such as a microwave inside its box and moving it. When it comes to motorcycles, a huge wooden crate, big enough to fit an entire bike, is used.
First, the motorcycle is wheeled or hoisted inside a wooden crate. Then strong straps are used to hold the motorcycle in place inside the crate. This is to avoid the motorcycle from falling over or leaning at a bad angle inside the crate. Once the motorcycle is secured inside the crate, the door to the crate is sealed and the entire crate is lifted onto a long haul truck (for motorcycle overland transportation) or the cargo ship (for motorcycle international/overseas transportation). The long haul trucks and the cargo ship come with installed pallets, onto which the crates are placed and strapped before transportation can commence. The pallets hold the crates in place, while also aiding in efficient loading and offloading.
Types of motorcycle crate shipping
There are three options for motorcycle crate shipping, depending on the size of the crate.
- Economy/ Single-use: Single-use motorcycle crates are the cheapest and hence the most economical. These crates are made of plywood and oriented strand boards (OSB). Usually, plywood crates are only strong enough to properly serve a singular shipment. They are specifically designed for clients who just bought or sold a motorcycle and are seeking to transport them to a specific destination at the lowest cost possible.
- Standard re-usable quick-crates: These crates are made of stronger plywood, making it reusable. The crate is easily assembled once the motorcycle is placed on the plywood floor. This standard reusable quick crate is compact enough to offer stable protection for the motorcycle all through the entire journey. Once a shipment is done, the crate can be dissembled and stored in your garage. The walls fold and stack on each other, taking up only about 12” high of space, proving to be convenient for all. Its reusability is economic in the long run, and especially for frequent motorcycle movers.
- XL Reusable quick-crate: These crates are recommended for the larger motorcycles. They offer more room for the motorcycles. The larger the bike, the heavier it is. The straps and the tie-downs here are stronger to support the heavier weight of the motorcycle and hold it in place during bumpy rides. These XL reusable quick crates can also be dissembled, occupying only little space in your storage facility.
Tips to note
While the roll on, roll off option is open-aired in nature, motorcycle crate shipping is enclosed in nature. This poses a limit to what components of the motorcycle can be comfortably accommodated inside the crate. For this reason, any extra additions to the motorcycle should be unscrewed or disconnected to save on space. These include extended windscreens, extended handlebars, side mirrors, extended motorcycle stands and the passenger carrier if it has one.
Apart from those tips specific to motorcycle crate shipping, standard motorcycle preparation tips are still adhered to. Such tips include:
- Cleaning the motorcycle of dirt and mud. This is to keep the reusable crate clean and neat for use the next time you need it.
- Draining the gas tank until it’s just about ¼ tank full. The wooden crates are flammable in nature. The lesser fuel in the gas tank, the safer, just in case of any accidents.
- Checking the motorcycle fluids, tire pressure, and the battery. Any spills can damage the crate, compromising its functionality the next time it’s used.
- Disabling the alarm system: A motorcycle alarm that goes off while in transit will be difficult to reach, as the crates are closed up and fastened before transportation commences.
Need motorcycle crate shipping for your ride. We have got you covered. Talk to us today!
Written By:Joe Webster
Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing.
After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood.
With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.