Shipping a Moped

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Just take off the wheels and put it in a bike box! I like how everyone says that like it’s so easy. I did this to two Magnums and took pictures as I did it. Maybe it’s because they are Magnums and a little bigger than your average ped but it’s not as easy as it looks. I probably have 4-5 hours in to getting these things ready for shipping. Anyway, I took some pictures of what I did so that others might benefit from it in the future.

Drain all of the fluids including gas and gearbox oil. Shipping companies do not like oil soaking through a box. You are not guaranteed that your package will be upright the whole trip. I then placed an old T-shirt under the engine to soak up any residual fluids and then placed a garbage bag around the engine to hopefully ward off any unpleasant accidents that might involve leftover fluid. I took the wheels and exhaust off. I also took off the handlebars but left all the wires and cables connected. I just laid them along the side of the moped. I took the whole pedal crank off, not just the pedals. This may not be possible on all mopeds. I went to the bike store and jumped in the dumpster and grabbed all of the big boxes that I could find. Then I stopped at the store and bought 100 feet of bubble wrap and probably about three hundred feet of good tape. This ran about $50. There might be cheaper places to buy bubble wrap but I got mine at Office Max. Bubble wrap is great because it's light. Newspapers get heavy and will add to your weight cost.

First I cut two boxes and laid them together so that I could get the required width. I needed eleven inches for the Magnum. I just cut up the front opposite corner on each box and unfolded it so that I had two really long halves. I wanted to make sure that there was enough length to work with to make the rear of the box. Boxes taped together.JPG

Then I laid several layers of cardboard on the bottom and some sheets of styrofoam. The extra cardboard helps add rigidity otherwise you'll just get a huge sage in the middle. Styrofoam.JPG

This is what the moped looks like ready to go. I wrapped bubble wrap around everything that is painted and might get scratched. Notice the tennis balls on the front forks to prevent them from poking through the bottom of the box. Wrapped up.JPG

I then slid it in to the box. If you plan the width just right, you won't really need a lot of extra padding on the sides to keep it from rocking back and forth. It might be a good idea at this point to slide in another layer of cardboard on each side for protection. Moped in box.JPG

Once you get an idea of how long it will be, you can cut and fold the leftover length on the sides to make the back of the box. Then use lots and lots of tape. For seams and corners I usually lay a strip right along the seam. I then place another piece parallel to the first one and overlap it by about one-third. Do this on each edge of the first piece of tape. Just one two-inch wide piece of tape will not hold the weight that they will receive so by overlapping the tape you can effectively create a piece of tape that is 5-6 inches wide.

Here are two Magnum frames with engines and one box with all of the tires, exhausts and a few miscellaneous parts. Ready for DHL.JPG

It cost right around $250 via DHL to get these shipped from the Kansas City area to the west side of the country for those of you that like to know those things.

          • Another way to go about it... This is how i shipped my faired racing Moby to Cali.

Go to and buy a shipping crate - mine was $214.00 - pick it up at Uline to save shipping. It was easy to use, had super easy tabs fabbed on to bend over and I reused it for the trip home. (or build your own from a pallet and scrap wood if your a Handy Andy). Put your bike inside (assembled if it fits, take it apart if it doesnt. It cost me $275.00 each way to ship it from Minneapolis, to Los Angeles. Hub to Hub. What this means is, I found a local LTL (less than truck load) logistics company. Search for Logistics or freight brokers in your area. I dropped it off at the hub, picked up at the hub (cus i flew out there and back duh) then again when i got home. It was fairly easy, and offers quite a bit more protection than shipping it in boxes.

- Shane Johnson