Bikes on cross channel ferries

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Igobybike
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Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby Igobybike » 23 Feb 2019, 7:23am

Are any precautions necessary for bike transport on the cross channel ferries, in terms of how they are secured on the vehicle decks? In other words, should I perhaps be thinking of bringing some lagging to protect the frame for example? Or anything else? It'll be a carbon frame. I'm particularly thinking of the Hook of Holland and Dover Calais routes. Thanks.

MrsHJ
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby MrsHJ » 23 Feb 2019, 8:03am

Nope.

You wheel it on (cycle in the old days), park up using rope they provide and leave it. A couple of bungees might be helpful
Depending on layout etc.

Nb i see you have carbon fibre- yes, there is a good chance of other bikes being next to yours and leaning against it- your panniers will usually protect but something to consider.

ANTONISH
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby ANTONISH » 23 Feb 2019, 8:43am

I went with P&O from Dover to Calais last September.
They had newly acquired one of those wheel breaker cycle racks and insisted that bikes were placed in them.
Another cyclist and myself lashed our bikes together using bungey cords - at least this reduced the movement.
I much prefer to lash my bike to the wall - there is plenty of space - I get the impression that some ferry companies would prefer not to carry cyclists.
DFDS seem to be better in this respect.

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mjr
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby mjr » 23 Feb 2019, 2:11pm

The last two years, DFDS at Dover have had bike racks just inside the car deck and then once full, there are bars along the walls to tie to as directed.

Two and three years ago, Stena's Harwich lines have had metal fences slotted into the deck to lean bikes against and tie to.

In both cases, saddle and bar sides against the rack, fence or bar means your frame is mainly at risk of careless parkers next to you.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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LittleGreyCat
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby LittleGreyCat » 23 Feb 2019, 4:46pm

I thought that if you went Harwich to Hook of Holland overnight you could bring your bike into your cabin.
One bike, that is, so you would need a single cabin.
I have just sent a query to DFDS to confirm/deny this.
I will report back.

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mjr
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby mjr » 23 Feb 2019, 5:26pm

LittleGreyCat wrote:I thought that if you went Harwich to Hook of Holland overnight you could bring your bike into your cabin.
One bike, that is, so you would need a single cabin.
I have just sent a query to DFDS to confirm/deny this.
I will report back.

Harwich-HvH is Stena not DFDS and you would only want to carry a folding bike up stairs or to/from lift on either!
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

Thehairs1970
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby Thehairs1970 » 23 Feb 2019, 5:31pm

Done Harwich to Hook of Holland a couple of times. Never been offered cabin space for a bike. Having said that we travel as a four so...

Lots of bikes when we have travelled. If you have panniers, these should provide a bit of cushioning. If not, hang back and put yours on the outside.

tatanab
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby tatanab » 23 Feb 2019, 5:40pm

ANTONISH wrote:I went with P&O from Dover to Calais last September.
They had newly acquired one of those wheel breaker cycle racks
Newly? They were using them in 2013 when I last used that crossing, and they looked pretty old even then. I don't recall what was used on the Dunkirk crossing I used on the way back.

The rope I always loop around the handlebar stem and saddle pillar so there's no possibility of rope marks on the paint.

Slowroad
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby Slowroad » 23 Feb 2019, 8:35pm

LittleGreyCat wrote:
I thought that if you went Harwich to Hook of Holland overnight you could bring your bike into your cabin.
One bike, that is, so you would need a single cabin.
I have just sent a query to DFDS to confirm/deny this.
I will report back.


Harwich-HvH is Stena not DFDS and you would only want to carry a folding bike up stairs or to/from lift on either!

You'd not be allowed to bring a full-sized non-folder into the cabin, and there would be little enough room anyway. It's hard work even carrying a Brommie up all the stairs! Stena are not too bad re non-folding bikes, I've travelled with them a few times and never been concerned about the physical safety of my bike. You could lock it to the bike fences if it'll help you sleep, and carry up your gear to the cabin.
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ossie
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby ossie » 23 Feb 2019, 10:47pm

Igobybike wrote:Are any precautions necessary for bike transport on the cross channel ferries, in terms of how they are secured on the vehicle decks? In other words, should I perhaps be thinking of bringing some lagging to protect the frame for example? Or anything else? It'll be a carbon frame. I'm particularly thinking of the Hook of Holland and Dover Calais routes. Thanks.


Its a free for all when you get on board. If its busy you might return to find 5 bikes stacked against yours or more. The Hook / Harwich route is a roadies weekend favourite with plenty of bling and worried owners looking concerned as they lash their bikes to old tourers and the rest .They are secured by a rope, if quiet you rope it yourself but on occasion I've returned to find bikes having slipped down at odd angles and pedals / spokes intertwined.

I'm struggling to think what protection you could use other than copper pipe insulation for the frame. I've never seen anyone do that mind.

ANTONISH
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby ANTONISH » 24 Feb 2019, 9:24am

tatanab wrote:
ANTONISH wrote:I went with P&O from Dover to Calais last September.
They had newly acquired one of those wheel breaker cycle racks
Newly? They were using them in 2013 when I last used that crossing, and they looked pretty old even then. I don't recall what was used on the Dunkirk crossing I used on the way back.

The rope I always loop around the handlebar stem and saddle pillar so there's no possibility of rope marks on the paint.


Time flies :(
We use the Dover - Calais crossing several times a year (car with bikes).
I only rarely use that crossing by myself with my bike - depends on where I'm going - so last year may have been the first time I was made to use that rack. I wonder what happens when the bike rack is full.

Igobybike
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby Igobybike » 26 Feb 2019, 7:32am

ossie wrote:Its a free for all when you get on board. If its busy you might return to find 5 bikes stacked against yours or more. The Hook / Harwich route is a roadies weekend favourite with plenty of bling and worried owners looking concerned as they lash their bikes to old tourers and the rest .They are secured by a rope, if quiet you rope it yourself but on occasion I've returned to find bikes having slipped down at odd angles and pedals / spokes intertwined.

I'm struggling to think what protection you could use other than copper pipe insulation for the frame. I've never seen anyone do that mind.


Thanks for all the replies. Yes, copper pipe insulation was exactly the sort of thing I was thinking of. I can see myself being that worried roadie, and I would be traveling at the weekend! But I am planning for a bit more than a weekend away. :-)

durhambiker
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby durhambiker » 2 Mar 2019, 9:57am

LittleGreyCat wrote:I thought that if you went Harwich to Hook of Holland overnight you could bring your bike into your cabin.
One bike, that is, so you would need a single cabin.
I have just sent a query to DFDS to confirm/deny this.
I will report back.

Why on earth would you wish to do that?

LittleGreyCat
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby LittleGreyCat » 2 Mar 2019, 6:21pm

durhambiker wrote:
LittleGreyCat wrote:I thought that if you went Harwich to Hook of Holland overnight you could bring your bike into your cabin.
One bike, that is, so you would need a single cabin.
I have just sent a query to DFDS to confirm/deny this.
I will report back.

Why on earth would you wish to do that?


Have my touring bike safe with me instead of locked up and subject to abuse in the car deck or wherever.
I have read various complaints about unsuitable fixings, and the risks of lashing a number of bikes together.
Depending on area, some people keep their bikes at home in the hall which seems a sensible precaution.
I wouldn't want my leather saddle pinching, for example.

In fact, look directly up thread for some examples.

gregoryoftours
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Re: Bikes on cross channel ferries

Postby gregoryoftours » 2 Mar 2019, 10:07pm

Igobybike wrote:Are any precautions necessary for bike transport on the cross channel ferries, in terms of how they are secured on the vehicle decks? In other words, should I perhaps be thinking of bringing some lagging to protect the frame for example? Or anything else? It'll be a carbon frame. I'm particularly thinking of the Hook of Holland and Dover Calais routes. Thanks.

I would take some lagging as you say, and secure your bike as firmly as possible with Arno straps. And try as hard as you can not to have to put it in one of those wheel/rotor/rear derailleur trashing bike stands.