Whether you’re selling your vintage bike or shipping it for repairs, proper preparation and packaging is essential to ensure it arrives at its destination in the same condition it was sent. This guide provides an overview of important considerations and best practices for safely transporting popular classic motorcycle brands via commercial carriers Shipping Your Vintage Motorcycle.

Prepare Your Bike for Transit

Before packing up your bike, take the necessary steps to protect it during transport. Remove or secure any loose parts like mirrors, indicators and license plates that could break off. Drain all fluids like gasoline, oil and coolant to eliminate risks of leaks. Protect painted or chrome surfaces with plastic sheeting, fabric or bubble wrap where possible to prevent scratches.

Popular Vintage Motorcycle Brands

Brand Years
Harley-Davidson 1901-present
Triumph 1902-present
Norton 1901-present
BSA 1905-1973
Honda 1948-present

Pack Your Bike for Maximum Protection

Once prepared, pack your motorcycle carefully with the goal of immobilizing parts to prevent unwanted movement during transit. Place sturdy foam sheets or pads between major components like the frame, engine and wheels. Secure them with straps or zip ties so pieces don’t rub against one another. Padding helps absorb vibration and impacts from bumps in the road.

Crate or Wrapping?

Most vintage bikes ship within a custom-fitted wooden crate for ultimate security. However, wrapping with plastic or fabric sheeting can also work depending on the bike’s size, condition and desired level of protection. Crates provide complete enclosure but may be more difficult to assemble than wrapping. Consider your options based on the specific motorcycle.

Choose a Reputable Shipping Company

When transporting a collectible motorcycle, opt for a carrier with experience handling vehicles that requires extra care. Look for companies offering enclosed transport options like enclosed trailers or protected truck beds. Ask about insurance coverage in case of damage during transit. Also confirm the carrier is properly licensed and verify any recent customer reviews.

Shipping Your Vintage Motorcycle – Prepare Documentation

Print out shipping details, manifests, and waybills to attach to your packaged motorcycle before pick-up. Include your contact information, the bike’s description and estimated value. Photograph the bike from multiple angles before sealing to have a record of its pre-ship condition. Maintain all documentation in case any issues arise throughout transport.

Shipping Your Vintage Motorcycle – Inspect Upon Delivery

Check for external damage as soon as your packaged or crated bike arrives. If possible, have the carrier present to note and initial any issues found. Unpack carefully and thoroughly inspect all parts for damage before signing acceptance forms. Document any problems, missing parts or signs that it was mishandled during transit for your records.

By following these preparation, packing and shipping tips tailored to classic motorcycle brands, you can better protect your valuable vintage bike during transport. Proper planning and care taken at every step of the shipping process helps ensure a safe voyage to its new destination.