Flightcasing and Protection

December 10, 2011 -

Stage gear takes a lot more punishment than studio equipment, so investing a few quid in suitable protection for it has to be worth considering. But what do you need to know before buying?

Once you've spent hard-earned cash on equipment for live sound use, it's the generally accepted wisdom that it will need protecting against bumps and scrapes along the way. Captain Kirk could look after the Enterprise by simply saying 'raise shields' but for the likes of you and me, it's 'flightcase'. You might think that the cost of flightcases to properly protect your valuable gear against damage will be quite high (although cases don't actually cost as much as you might expect). However, investing in suitable cases not only offers protection against damage, but has other 'on road' benefits too, in terms of added convenience and flexibility, not to mention the professional look it gives you.

If you try a Google search on 'flightcase', about two million results will be returned, the first page or so of which are likely to refer to flightcases for the entertainment and corporate advertising industries. No matter what the object is, the chances are that someone, somewhere makes a flightcase for it, or is quite willing to do so if asked. In the field of live sound, we need cases in which to hold, operate, store and transport our equipment. The degree of protection required and the overall design and quality of the case will depend not only on the gear itself but also on the intended or potential use. When I started out I couldn't afford much in the way of decent sound gear, let alone cases to put it in, but as I've built up and improved my PA inventory I've tried to ensure that it is packed and protected as well as possible. In choosing which cases are the best for your needs, don't forget that they will add to the overall size and weight of the gear you need to move around; many full flightcases are heavier than their contents, so you may need to consider the individual weight of each item, and perhaps even the load capacity of the vehicle you use to transport your gear.

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