Riding the Hooligan to NAHBS

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The Cannodale Hooligan continues to prove itself as a very versatile bike.  The afternoon before flying to Denver, I raced around town on the little-wheeled bike in search of a suitable bag to pack it in.  In the end, I decided that a pair of durable black plastic trash bags would be best, with the aid of a roll of duct tape.  Total cost: about $6.  

Twenty five miles pavement riding, fast– check

Pack my bags with camera socks and a sleeping bag the night before, around midnight.

I awoke at 3:30AM to ride to the airport by 4:30, to check the bike by 5:00 to board the plane by 5:30 to arrive in Denver by 7:30.

Cross-town ride in the dark to the ABQ International Sunport.  Pack the bike in about 15-20 minutes– check

At the last moment I noticed my multi-tool in my pocket, which would be confiscated at security.  I tore open a hole in the plastic bag, packed the tool away, and taped the hole closed.  I did not realize that the bag was not fully sealed elsewhere, as I had used two bags in opposite directions. I arrived in Denver without a tool to re-assemble the bike.  After some digging around with various airlines, I finally found 4 and 5 mm hex wrenches and an adjustable crescent wrench.  Roll out.  RTD bus to downtown Denver, $11.  Bike the last mile or two to NAHBS in the sun.   

Ride to NAHBS, with the help of a bus and an airplane– check.

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What’s in the bag?  A kinetic sculpture.  Mobility device.  Materials for a trade show.  A new wheelchair for my mom, aunt, great uncle…most definitely not a bike.

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11 thoughts on “Riding the Hooligan to NAHBS

  1. That’s a terrific recounting of your journey with the Hooligan. After having a chance to ride it, this only makes me appreciate it that much more. The only part I wonder about is how you protect the rear derailleur. It really is a stealthy mobility device.

    • Yes, wrapped in garbage bags. No issues in transit, although I did lose my multi-tool en route. It took some time to find the appropriate tools at the airport to reassemble the bike.

  2. Nice recovery on the missing tool. I’m curious about your experience with the black plastic bags. We’ve been advocating using clear plastic bags to transport our full sized rigs via airlines for some time now. (not going to post a link, but you can find it if you look). Our theory is the clear bag gives baggage handlers a chance to treat the bike humanely since it isn’t in an anonymous box, but with the black bags I’d be concerned that the bike might not get the same TLC. Glad to hear it made it in [one] piece.

    • The black bag avoids any additional bike charges. In this case, I’m not worried about how the bike is handled. The Hooligan is a tough little bike and was packed well, padded with a few small bags.

      If I were paying full price for a bike and intended to use a plastic bag, I would seek out a clear bag. In this case, the black bags were acquired from a Home Depot attendant free of charge.

      • Fair point RE: fee avoidance. I used to travel by plane with a brompton, walk right up and gate check it with seat and pedals removed. I would claim it was an inline wheelchair or similarly odd non-bike item :). Never had anyone deny me, but there were a few moments…

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