View Full Version : Hard Shipping Cases

tim atherton
14-Mar-2006, 09:54
what do they call those hard sided aluminium cases they use for shipping - like sound equipment etc - I'm sure there's an actual name for the things...

also, I was sure there was a company in Edmonton that custom made them that someone pointed to on here once (not strebor), but now I'm here I can't actually find them. I think they also made cases for the military etc


Mark Sampson
14-Mar-2006, 10:17
Anvil cases are the standard for traveling rock bands...

Frank Petronio
14-Mar-2006, 10:32
Calzone is also a brand

Frankly, I love my Lightwares... easier on the walls too

Jack Flesher
14-Mar-2006, 10:34
Ditto Lightware. Plus the scuzzy outer bag is a pretty good deterrent ;)

Walt Calahan
14-Mar-2006, 10:42
Had Anvil.

Switched to Lightware.

Never looked back.

Eric Biggerstaff
14-Mar-2006, 10:48
Lightware makes excellent products.

Go to www.lightware.com

tim atherton
14-Mar-2006, 10:51
yes, I've used lightware, but we need something probably custom made and tougher than Lightware for insurance purposes.

Frank Petronio
14-Mar-2006, 11:08
Your local heavy metal music shop will probably have the connections to locally made shipping boxes. The hardware and coated plywood is all the same and you might be able to save $ by customizing the interior padding yourself.

14-Mar-2006, 11:15
in music they're called road cases. they come in a couple of varieties ... the normal ones, which offer enough protection for when you're going to supervise the handling of your gear, and the full ATA approved flight cases, for when you're trusting your gear to roadies or the airline baggage gorillas. the flight cases are extra heavy, and typically have a case-within-a-case construction, with some kind of foam or spring suspension. they weigh a ton and are expensive.

Ted Harris
14-Mar-2006, 11:16
Anvil, Calzone already mentioned and several others all make cases that are ATA rated meaning that they are rated by the Airline Transoprt Association as constructed to be impervious to damage when checked. Neither Lightware nor any of the other photo specific cases are ATA rated AFAIK, thus if something is damaged in transit you might have a tough time with an insurance claim. Rimowa Tropicana cases might be ATA rated but don't recall.

Tim, you don't want to pay the price to have either Anvil or Calzone or any of their competitors custom make a case for you. You are way bettter off searching eBay on Anvil, etc.....finding one that is in decent shape and customizing the interior to meet your needs, or send it back to the manufcturer to meet your needs. You can also checkk government surplus sales for same. About 10 years ago I got 6 barely used Anvil cases that way for $50 each; kept one and sold the others. I still use that one case when I need to haul around or ship my Horseman monorail. It is literally bombproof but you can tell that when you pick it up ... the case itself weighs more than 20 pounds. Anvil cases, btw are also the standard for many professional photographers, network camera people and cinematographers .... all for when they are checking equipment on a plane.

Richard Boulware
14-Mar-2006, 11:29
Years ago, I got really fine government surplus instrument cases at surplus stores. They were about 30-36" square, and about the same in height. They had two clamp hinges on each of the four sides and had aluminum rims but the cases were fiberglass. They seal so tightly that there was even a screw-out bleeder valve to adjust air pressure. They were cheap and incredibly tough.
I used to carry the heavy Ascor 800 WS strobe power packs(40lbs.) in each, heavily packed in foam rubber. The cases were almost indestructible. The only down side was the heavy 'tips' I had to provide at each airport where I changed planes. Four heavy cases carrying Ascor packs. It used to cost me about $5o at every airport for SkyCap tips, in addition to extra airline insurance....in handling these 16 various cases.

Look around for some REAL surplus stores. Not the ones that carry sleeping bags, ...the ones that really carry shipping containers and industrial stuff and similar. The containers I used even had a govt. sereial number moulded into the fiberglass to confirm govt. standards.

Well worth your time, if you really want to find some Ft. Knox type shipping containers.

14-Mar-2006, 12:37
Tim, they are called 'flight cases'...

Struan Gray
14-Mar-2006, 14:09
This is a good site to get an overview of the various 'serious' cases on the N. American market: www.apgcases.com.

Henry Ambrose
14-Mar-2006, 17:10
I have a US military surplus computer monitor case - sorta like what Richard wrote about. Incredibly heavy duty but lighter than you'd think - its some kinda super plastic and aluminum. I bought it for a flying around project but they flew me on the company plane so I got special treatment for my gear and never used it. I'll sell it cheap, write me if you're interested. A few bio-hazard stickers to scare off the thieves and you're good to go.

Ellis Vener
14-Mar-2006, 19:25
here is one out of left field; Zarges. They build cases to NATO military spec. waterproff and dustproof (while closed of course). I have a couple and they are handsdown the strongest case I've ever owned inclusing Calzone, Anvil, Pelican, Zero-Haliburton and Lightware.


Ellis Vener
14-Mar-2006, 19:27
Here is one out of left field; Zarges. Zarges builds cases to NATO military spec. waterproof and dustproof (while closed of course). I have a couple and they are hands down the strongest case I've ever owned inclusing Calzone, Anvil, Pelican, Zero-Haliburton and Lightware.

Zarges (http://www.zarges.de/prod_log.php?chid=11&lang=int)

Jeff Graves
14-Mar-2006, 19:35
If your looking to build your own check out, www.reliablehardware.com/index.asp
I'm currently in the middle of building several cases of my own and I am using these guys for the extrusion and hardware. I figure by the time I am finished I'll have invested about 30% of what a new Anvil case would cost.

Robert A. Zeichner
15-Mar-2006, 05:40
Interestingly, the most popular (and best in IMHO) case used for the transport of delicate and expensive motion picture equipment is the one brand that hasn't been mentioned.... A&J. they are located in Los Angeles and I believe are very close to LAX. They design and manufacture all kinds of ATA shippng cases including a type that looks like the typical steel and aluminum edged/cornered case but featuring corrugated plastic sides that reduce weight considerably. I've worked with this company for nearly thrity years and have had them build a couple of hundred different cases for me. Who uses them? How about Panavision, Continental Camera Mounts, Stratton Camera, Claremont Camera and the former Victor Duncan. One of their best features is over-the-valance latches, very important if your case sits on the the tarmac in the rain! A&J also makes kick-ass tripod cases that won't roll around in the bed of your pickup and are guaranteed for life!