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Old 24 Feb 2010
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How do I get a fuel tank from USA to UK

Last week I tried to bring a used 6.6 US gallon plastic KLR tank back from Denver to London as check in luggage. To cut a long story short... man did I get told off. They don’t like that, I had made it safe was willing to put a lighter into the tank to prove it, they don’t like that either.
To get the point and brush over the threats and warnings I received. I was eventually allowed on the plane but my tank wasn’t. I want to get it back to UK at the moment it’s at my mates house in Denver. UPS want a ridicules $400. It’s about 2 cubic foot in size and 10kgs. Any one got any ideas. I would like it back in UK by May 2010
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Old 24 Feb 2010
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How did they know at 'check-in' what you had in your baggage?
'He who laughs last, was too slow to get the joke'
Never confuse the map with the journey.
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Old 25 Feb 2010
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Unfortunately, you don't have many choices.
The USA eliminated sea mail a few years ago.
So it is either UPS/FexEx/DHL or the US postal service (air mail).
Or wait until a traveler is going that way, and have him included it on his bike as a... spare gas tank?

I had a cooking stove tank confiscated in a US airport too. I even washed it and let it sit for a week so there was no chance of fumes. The airline counter guy still didn't like it. Should have said it was a water bottle, I guess.
Japan touring information
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Old 25 Feb 2010
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fuel tanks and bottles

I've had a similar problem with my MSR UNUSED fuel bottle not being allowed anywhere near a flight or to be parcelled up and sent

I think your best option may be to see if you can get it across one of the borders either Canada or Mexico to then send? If you can find anyone travelling that way who can do that for you.
Good luck.
On the road from...I'm not sure any more
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Old 25 Feb 2010
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Is this an IMS tank for the KLR? If so, call IMS and ask them to forward ship it for you. Let them pack it and ship it using their logos and packing methods. Go with USPS. This will be the cheapest by far. UPS and FedEx are way expensive, I never, ever use them. Anyone who ships for a living will know this.

I've sent all sorts of MC parts worldwide using USPS including fuel tanks, Carbs, Stators, heads, headlights, body parts, panniers and dozens of other weird things. I always label them as used cycle parts and use a non descript term when possible, like "used cycle part". With the fuel tank I never state "fuel tank", but Cycle parts. Fuel tank will immediately get a red flag. Once the clerk accepts it at your local USPS it should go unopened until it arrives in UK.

When I sent a stock fuel tank I cleaned inside with Alcohol to remove petrol smell, finished up with soap and hot water. Then left it bake in the Sun for a few days. I shipped it with fuel cap and petcock OFF. Any hint of odor and they will confiscate it.

The other possibility is to sell the tank in the USA. Better than paying shipping it. Get another tank for the KLR in the UK or EU. Thing is, if you sell in US, you'll still have to mail to someone. This is possible, trust me.

Shipping USPS to UK with insurance should run about $80 USD. I sent one to Australia for about that price. (from California) Unless your KLR tank is really huge and a weird shape. If it requires a odd sized box, then it's gonna cost you more, and will get more scrutiny.
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Old 26 Feb 2010
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klr Tank Shipping

Try DK Motorcycles,01782 338707. They import containers from USA. You never know your luck,a container may waiting. I'm sure a deal could be done,or any other shipping agent / importer come to that.
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Old 27 Feb 2010
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You should be able to get the tank professionally decontiminated and a certificate to confirm that it has been done.

I am so pleased that airport staff have the common sense not to believe the "I rinsed it out 20 times with water" story and then let in on a plane with 300 passengers.

I find it hard to believe that you had no doubts at all that they would let you on with it to begin with.
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Old 9 Mar 2010
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Thanks for all the response, to answer the questions in order I got them.
The box with the tank and other parts in, was randomly searched, no luggage at all is allowed to be locked, and I have had to cable tie the key to my Givi top box in the past so it can be inspected in needs be.
It is an IMS tank but it cost the seller $70 to get it from California to Denver so I don’t really want to spend that again just to get it to the IMS people. If I can’t get it back to the UK for under $100 I will just cut my losses and put it on craigslist next time I'm there.
The tank was decontaminated; it would be safe to weld if it wasn’t plastic.
Right now I'm seeing if a local breakers who ship to the UK will put it in their next shipment.
If and when I get it back I will post and update and any with any information I have gathered.
Thanks again all for your help
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Old 22 Mar 2010
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When carrying chainsaws on board airplanes, the Forest Service has to "purge" their fuel tanks with some potion. I'll try to find what they use and get back to this thread.
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Old 23 Mar 2010
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Just to let you know USPS is the way forward, $70 and 8 days and it arrived safely to my door step. Now all I have to do is get it to Mongolia but it will be between my legs all the way for this journey (hopefully). Thanks for the comments especially Mickey D.
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Old 24 Mar 2010
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Wow! This is great news!

Best of luck with your trip. I hope you'll post here on Ride Tales once you get started. Much better than a Blog!

Ride safe! Have fun!
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