Suggestions for adding weight to a suitcase

For an upcoming shop I need to check an overweight suitcase (55 pounds). I've used every spare piece of plywood in my basement and a couple of big cookbooks and I'm STILL not there! I thought about using landscaping blocks, but I'm afraid they would shift around too much and ruin the suitcase. Any suggestions?

Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt

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Bottles of shampoo and conditioner weigh a lot, and so do boots and shoes (not flip flops and sandals). I know this from experience of traveling a lot, LOL!! Jeans are heavy material, I imagine you could roll them up and use a bungie cord to make them more compact so you have room for other items. I am not familiar with this shop, are you actually taking the trip? If so, they sometimes do search suitcases randomly and I imagine they scan suitcases frequently. I think plywood is an odd item to be in someone's bag.
You mentioned the cookbooks, but hardback books come to mind when I used to move a lot. However, I am probably dating myself. With the proliferation of eReaders you might have to scrounge around to get your hands on enough.

The spare tire in your trunk?
Water weighs 8.34 pounds per gallon. Go to the dollar store and buy 4 quarts of very cheap shampoo. Or buy 2 half gallons of apple juice. You probably have 10 pounds doing either of them. Wrap them in the clothes you have packed. Put them in plastic zip-lock bags if you are concerned about leakage. A single roll of pennies weighs 1/4 pound. Get as many rolls as you need at the bank. Spend them after the shop or just take them back to the bank.

Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
Go to Ross or TJ Maxx and invest in a business expense for a kettlebell or two. Not only you can justify it as a tax-deductible expense to help you complete this project, but you can also have a kettlebell at home to further enhance your health for the long term.

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 29 year old male and willing to travel! Badged for Denver International Airport.
Take a look in your kitchen. Do you have a cast iron frying pan, a cast iron flat burner cover for low heat, some mixing bowls that are ceramic, even some of the smaller appliances that are heavy might fit your suitcase and can be wrapped in paper to protect them, or a sheet, a full set of everyday silverware. Some sheet sets are quite heavy too. They prob will not ask but you could be relocating and did not pack those things as you needed them until the day of the move.
Or if that does not work and you live anywhere near LA you can invite my daughter over. She has no problem packing a 55 lb suitcase.
To build on the post above, what about weighted blankets? Recently, I saw one that weighed 6 pounds...

Some of the days in November carry the whole memory of summer as a fire opal carries the color of moon rise. - Gladys Taber
Yes, I am doing my first Amtrak shop. Good catch on the random wood and scanning.
@JASFLALMT wrote:

Bottles of shampoo and conditioner weigh a lot, and so do boots and shoes (not flip flops and sandals). I know this from experience of traveling a lot, LOL!! Jeans are heavy material, I imagine you could roll them up and use a bungie cord to make them more compact so you have room for other items. I am not familiar with this shop, are you actually taking the trip? If so, they sometimes do search suitcases randomly and I imagine they scan suitcases frequently. I think plywood is an odd item to be in someone's bag.

Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt
I have a lot of books, but right now they're boxed up in preparation for an upcoming move. If I had to I could search the multiple Little Free Libraries in my neighborhood and return the books when I was finished with the shop.
@lcubed3 wrote:

You mentioned the cookbooks, but hardback books come to mind when I used to move a lot. However, I am probably dating myself. With the proliferation of eReaders you might have to scrounge around to get your hands on enough.

The spare tire in your trunk?

Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt
Great ideas. I KNEW this group would come through!
@myst4au wrote:

Water weighs 8.34 pounds per gallon. Go to the dollar store and buy 4 quarts of very cheap shampoo. Or buy 2 half gallons of apple juice. You probably have 10 pounds doing either of them. Wrap them in the clothes you have packed. Put them in plastic zip-lock bags if you are concerned about leakage. A single roll of pennies weighs 1/4 pound. Get as many rolls as you need at the bank. Spend them after the shop or just take them back to the bank.

Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt
I just found out that one cast iron Dutch oven with lid and two cast iron frying pans are approximately 20 pounds. My suitcase is weighs 12 pounds, so I'm off to a great start.
@sandyf wrote:

Take a look in your kitchen. Do you have a cast iron frying pan, a cast iron flat burner cover for low heat, some mixing bowls that are ceramic, even some of the smaller appliances that are heavy might fit your suitcase and can be wrapped in paper to protect them, or a sheet, a full set of everyday silverware. Some sheet sets are quite heavy too. They prob will not ask but you could be relocating and did not pack those things as you needed them until the day of the move.
Or if that does not work and you live anywhere near LA you can invite my daughter over. She has no problem packing a 55 lb suitcase.

Happiness is not a goal; it is a by-product. Eleanor Roosevelt
Honestly, you could easily do it with heavy clothing (well bundled), toiletries, and shoes alone. I am a notorious over packer. I try to fly Southwest when going on long trips because bags fly free and I have to take 2 bags for a trip with toiletries, handbags, shoes, makeup, etc. for that very reason. If I take one bag, it will be overweight.

But, even cast iron skillets might raise an eyebrow as to WTF? Though I am sure weirder things have happened, and I doubt anyone is going to actually ask you why you have a cast iron skillet in your bag. They are great husband tamers, though. Maybe you are taking one to your daughter so she can keep her new husband in line? Blahahaha...hope you "guys" know I am just kidding.
Reading these posts I keep on thinking to when suitcases didn’t have wheels. Can you imagine having to carry 55+ pounds around. Luggage with wheels is one of those innovations I can’t think about doing without.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/24/2019 01:52AM by kenasch.
In real life my husband packed a slow cooker with a ceramic (h-e-a-v-y) insert to bring across the country to our daughter. In a few months he plans to pack our extra leaf blower to bring to son-in-law. I have packed boxes of Aldis brand Gram crackers to bring to son who has no access to inexpensive groceries. That brings to mind heavy bags of jasmine or basmati rice that are not available everywhere. Or cans of soup.
Half gallons of juice sound great but know the rules about packing liquids beforehand.
I bought a television at Costco in Tax-Free Delaware, packed it in a 29: inch suitcase (in the original box), and took it to friends in California. It was a much better deal in Tax-Free Delaware. I get free luggage on United (yes I have flown way too much for business). No one said a word. Not even a TSA inspection card inside the suitcase. In July, I packed 6 bottles of wine in my suitcase after visiting Temecula, CA and asked for a fragile sticker. As usual, no problems at all.

Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
Oh yes, alcohol is heavy. My son lives in Massachusetts where there are package stores that are expensive. The first time he came home after moving and went to Costco in Calif and saw the Scotch he liked was half the price here, he packed his return suitcase with 50 lbs worth of liquor.
I watched some people have all of their tequila and vanilla confiscated from their checked luggage last time we left Cozumel. Very unhappy travelers.
Wrap-around leg/ankle weights are flattish.

Some of the days in November carry the whole memory of summer as a fire opal carries the color of moon rise. - Gladys Taber
rameshharne spam report

Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
I recently had my suitcase (carryon) searched and my bottle of shampoo was removed, saying it was too large. I bought it new, so bummer. I'd put in a couple hardback books, maybe a heavy small frying pan saying it's a gift.
Heavy jacket, tennis shoes. I'd skip the wood stuff...booze sounds good but may be removed.

Live consciously....
Carry-on has very strict volume limits on liquids. The OP is/was looking for suggestions for checked baggage. Booze is not allowed in carry-on unless it meets the volume limits for liquids which is 3.4 ounces (100 ml) or less.. You are also not allowed to have a 55-pound carry-on, although some might get away with it if they can get it through TSA screening.
@Irene_L.A. wrote:

I recently had my suitcase (carryon) searched and my bottle of shampoo was removed, saying it was too large. I bought it new, so bummer. I'd put in a couple hardback books, maybe a heavy small frying pan saying it's a gift.
Heavy jacket, tennis shoes. I'd skip the wood stuff...booze sounds good but may be removed.

Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
@myst4au wrote:

Carry-on has very strict volume limits on liquids. The OP is/was looking for suggestions for checked baggage. Booze is not allowed in carry-on unless it meets the volume limits for liquids which is 3.4 ounces (100 ml) or less.. You are also not allowed to have a 55-pound carry-on, although some might get away with it if they can get it through TSA screening.
@Irene_L.A. wrote:

I recently had my suitcase (carryon) searched and my bottle of shampoo was removed, saying it was too large. I bought it new, so bummer. I'd put in a couple hardback books, maybe a heavy small frying pan saying it's a gift.
Heavy jacket, tennis shoes. I'd skip the wood stuff...booze sounds good but will be removed.
I said booze would be removed???

Live consciously....
If any bottle of booze exceeds the TSA limit for liquids of 3.4 ounces (100 ml) it will be removed from carry-on luggage, not from checked baggage.
@Irene_L.A.
I said booze would be removed???[/quote
wrote:


Shopping Southeast Pennsylvania, Delaware above the canal, and southwestern NJ since 2008
@myst4au wrote:

If any bottle of booze exceeds the TSA limit for liquids of 3.4 ounces (100 ml) it will be removed from carry-on luggage, not from checked baggage.
@Irene_L.A.
I said booze would be removed???[/quote
wrote:

Not sure what's going on, but I did NOT write this in caps!!!!!
LATER, MUCH LATER.

Live consciously....


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 09/24/2019 05:01PM by Irene_L.A..
Some states (and airlines/bus companies) have rules about transporting booze in checked luggage. Airlines might be a bit lenient but there is still the possibility of it being confiscated. Rice and flour are available in 5 to 10 pound bags. If you can get White Lily Flour (hard to find outside southern states--it makes the lightest fluffiest biscuits) you might be able to resell it for big bucks on ebay!
@Susan L. wrote:

Some states (and airlines/bus companies) have rules about transporting booze in checked luggage. Airlines might be a bit lenient but there is still the possibility of it being confiscated. Rice and flour are available in 5 to 10 pound bags. If you can get White Lily Flour (hard to find outside southern states--it makes the lightest fluffiest biscuits) you might be able to resell it for big bucks on ebay!

The rules for liquor in check-in luggage for flying is usually are for international travel (1 x ~1L for every 21+ year old coming into the US). However, I found that the busier the airport and/or if you use Global Entry, the less likely
U.S. Customs and Border Protection cared, AS LONG AS you don't raise any red flags such as traveling for business.... Crazy, right?

I've never ran into any restrictions for as much as I travel around the country by plane though.... What check-in restrictions do you speak of?

Shopping the Greater Denver Area, Colorado Springs and in-between in Colorado. 29 year old male and willing to travel! Badged for Denver International Airport.


Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 09/24/2019 10:22PM by Tarantado.
It is possible if on a train that the restrictions are different as you pass through certain states on land. I don't know but Amtrak will probably address that on their website somewhere or through a phone call. For flying within the US there are no restrictions on alcohol in checked luggage from what I can tell. From an international location there is a limit to how many bottles you can transport to the US. It used to be 2 per adult as i recall, checked. .
So maybe I'm just paranoid, but if I was putting lumber, water bottles and cast iron skillets into checked luggage I would have some sort of documentation, copies of guidelines, whatever in my possession as well. Because given the world as it is today, if your bag does get scanned you could spend a very long time in a very hard chair if they don't buy your explanation for why you have all this really weird stuff in your suitcase, and little or none of the stuff that travelers would be expected to have.

It sounds like an interesting shop, but you don't want it to get too interesting.
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