One less step is always better.
The SciCon AeroComfort Triathlon TSA Bike Case is designed specifically to keep your triathlon bike safe for the duration of your journey. The majority of the bag is sewn from 840 denier ripstop nylon backed with PE for added durability. A waterproof polyurethane is used for the bottom panel and it has been given a durable diamond texture to minimize scuffing. And while the exterior of the bag is important, the insides are what set it apart. The geometry is designed specifically to match the geometry of a triathlon bike. Additionally, SciCon uses both the front fork as well as the rear dropouts to securely attach your frame to its Antishock Bike Frame (ABF). This greatly reduces lateral movement, minimizing frame scuffs and paint dings. In addition to the multiple points of attachment, SciCon uses an Inside Stabilizer System (ISS), which is a series of straps that holds the bike to the case in critical places, including the seat.
Perhaps the most exciting feature of the AeroComfort is that you no longer have to remove the seat or aerobars for the bike to fit. No more searching for lost screws or worrying that your position has shifted when you reattach the bars. The case will accommodate seatposts up to 90cm and most aerobar configurations. And, given the wider width of the bag needed for the bars, you won’t need to remove your pedals either. The bag includes two built-in pockets to hold your wheels and they are attached through the frame with a strap to hold them close to the bike. The entire case flattens for convenient under-bed storage when your travels are done.
- Triathlon or Time-trial bikes
- Ripstop 840 denier nylon and PE
- 52in length x 35in height x 17in width
- Holds one bike with wheels
- Q & A
SCICON AeroComfort Triathlon Bike Bag 3.0
If you care about your bike, you will not opt for this case. Traveling with a bike is not easy, and the notion that you can just take off the wheels, attach the bike to a metal frame, zip and go is a myth. The giant red metal “frame protector” is a literal red flag for TSA, and inspections are only getting MORE intense, not less. On an outbound trip, TSA removed my bike from the frame / skewers and did not replace it correctly. My bike (and the unhitched derailleur protector AND red front fork SciCon moveable arm) bounced around in the bag for 2 domestic connections. TSA had clearly taken the bike off of the frame protector, as the skewers were retightened, but the derailleur protector was not put back on, the bike was not attached to the skewers, the front fork “arm” came out of the sliding mechanism, and the bolt that attaches that fork was broken . My derailleur was crushed and my beautiful Trek Speed Concept had chips out of the paint all over the bike (even though there were pieces of extra padding on the frame). But wait, it gets better.
On the RETURN flight, TSA DISMANTLED THE ENTIRE FRAME PROTECTOR. Not where the bike connects to the red frame protector but where the protector connects to the BAG ITSELF. The bolts along the bottom of the bag had been unscrewed (and stripped because they used the wrong tool) and the bolts were loose (with one completely gone) when I got the bike back home. No, I did not have CO2 cartridges in the bag, and I was not smuggling contraband goods inside the rails of the red frame protector. TSA sees metal, and TSA dismantles. I had also taken off the derailleur this time for extra safety, but TSA unpacked it and left it swinging around in the bag. Really- understand this—TSA TOOK APART THE BOTTOM OF THE FRAME PROTECTOR, which is not a set of pieces you are meant to be moving.
Beyond the frame protector itself, the most problematic design is the metal arm attachment (that moves) for the front fork. If TSA untightens the main bolt where the two parts attach, then your frame is completely vulnerable. (This bolt was taken off on my outbound trip, leaving the red “arm” bouncing around in the box destroying my frame).
Yes, I dislike taking my bike apart to fit into a hard bike case. But guess what—it is a set of simple bike parts in a simple box with padding; we should know our bikes and adequately take them apart and put them together anyway. The metal frame protector that makes up the foundation of this case will eventually be your undoing once a TSA inspector gets their hands on it. There are way too many moveable metal parts in this soft case, and TSA does not care if those parts are put back the way that they were packed. I have been riding, racing, and traveling with my bike for over 18 years, and I am truly sorry that I drank the cool-aid and purchased (and travelled) with this case.
I did not have anything extra (no shoes, helmet, etc.) packed in the bike box. Yes, it was maneuverable through the airport, but I would prefer to have my bike in one piece instead of looking comfy carting around a soft case bag that left my bike trashed.
Oh, and lovely SciCon charged me $45 to replace the hand screwed bolt that TSA lost on the outbound flight. Great additional insult.
Great travel case, but........
- Familiarity: I've used it several times
This bike case has proved to be a very convenient method to travel with my Wife's Tri-Bike. Easy to pack and easy for TSA to take a look see, which they always do. Here is the "BUT" .. In the first two trips with the airlines, all 5 caster wheels have been damaged and made unusable. I say 5 because when you purchase the case, it comes with an extra caster wheel assembly. The Casters are not durable at all and all the bearings fall out of the caster assembly. If you want to order replacements, it can take a long time to get and they are $78 for all 4. I am looking into purchasing replacements through an online caster wheel website where they are priced from around $5.00 each. Just a word to the wise..... Otherwise, I love the bag as I do not have to remove aerobars and cables when packing. Bike packs up fully in about 5 minutes and then reassembly is also about 5 minutes. Padded wheel bags within this bike bag are a plus. It says you do not need to take pedals off but I do anyway as its easy and its a precaution.
Not small but easy to travel with
- Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
This is a very good bag to travel with your triathlon bike. As mentioned it took very little disassembly to fit my P5 into the bag. It took a little skill to get the chain and RD into position over the frame. Do not expect to get away without paying the bike fees, this thing will dwarf all other luggage in the terminal.
It seemed strange that they provided an extra caster for the bag, but on my very first trip I found out why... When I picked it up from oversized on my return trip one was missing. After seeing how they are mounted I'm not surprised it came off. I might need to get a line on buying spares if my luck remains the same on future trips.
In all it did exactly what I needed it to. I avoided having to mess with my fit by having to taking much of anything apart. The bike arrived unscathed (Delta checking did freak me out when they asked me to sign a waiver because it was a soft side). And it was extremely easy to maneuver despite it's size.
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
1. Consistent with the statements in the video above, it is really fast to pack and unpack your TT bike. It easily swallowed my 60cm TT frame with aero bars at the morphological (+5 cm) exception, even with extra padding to protect the electronic shifters. And, given all the fine tuning in a TT setup, you don't have to remove anything but your two wheels. Traveled with Mavic disk and HED tri-spoke and didn't even have to remove pedals. One side of the crank was below the disc, the pedal on the other side easily between the tri-spoke spokes. Talk about easy. Also, if you have a power meter some have magnets/magnet holder under the BB which can be an issue when it comes to bike boxes that require the BB to rest on a foam pad, etc. The internal frame in this box keeps the BB away from direct contact with anything. It is also really nice to have both fork and rear wheel dropouts secure.
Fully loaded, the bag is easily under the 50 lb weight 'Heavy' limit for some airlines.
2. Rolls beautifully.
I have five other bike bags/boxes. This rolls better than any of them. By far.
On a recent trip with both Road and TT bikes, I simply created a train with the Sci-Con bag as the caboose. Easy peasy.
3. Just fits
Fortunately, the bike bag just fit into the XRay machine.
4. Internal frame appears robust
One of my other bags also features an internal frame arrangement. It is amazing, or not, how baggage handlers seem to be able to bend the frame. The Sci-Con bag has fared much better.
1. No convenient place for Airline baggage tags. Had to run the airline baggage tag through a loop provided by my ID tag, which was in turn slipped through a handle D-Ring. The D-Rings for the straps are too small to slip the bag tag through. Not the best solution, but the tags didn't come off.
2. A little front heavy. With my train set up, the bag had a tendency to tilt forward from the front wheels. This is easily solved by putting something heavier (e.g. your shoes) at the back of the bag (e.g. under the chainstays)
3. Strap hooks not robust.
The straps themselves are really nice, but there is a flimsy hook at the end. I inadvertently punched myself in the face when one of the hooks decided to let go as I was lifting the bag. This could definitely be beefed up.
Geoff Brown Approved