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Wood vs ABS

Discussion in 'Pro Audio Equipment' started by kevinlimse, Jul 3, 2006.

  1. kevinlimse

    kevinlimse Guest

    Which material of casing would you buy to protect ur Instrument/equipments given that it will be used for touring also long term storage. ABS or Wood? Anyone have experience to judge which ones are more durable and resistant to abuse.

    I think that ABS will be more rain proof than wood which will in time spoil and rot. However ABS seems fragile although it can be harder then wood. Once I saw an ABS guitar case being sold for cheaper because a corner's chipped of leaving quite a big hole.

    Wood won't chip that easily, because it will be blunted then smashed rather than pop a hole. Downside is its heavy and biodegradable. However its thermal insulative.

    I have no first hand experience in ABS or some plastic cases before only wood/Al, so... all my opinions on ABS are just analytic guesses.. need real comments on the comparison on both...
  2. moonbaby

    moonbaby Mmmmmm Moderator

    Feb 23, 2005
    When you say "wood", do you mean "just" wood? I mean your typical Anvil-type of flight case is wood with hard plastic coating (in your choice of 33 lucious colors!). THAT type of case material is relatively light and being that it's....WOOD (!), is much more resilient to vibration . Kind of like a natural "shock absorber".
    The ABS cases are, as you said, waterproof to some degree. Until one of them gets dropped on a corner and punctures. Some SKB cases are "roto-molded" and they tend to be more reinforced in the corners from that.
    From my own experiences, the metal frames that most "wood" cases have are easier to replace the hardware on, as opposed to the ABS cases. And many of those ABS cases feature "hardware" like hinges and latches that is actually molded into the structure, rendering them non-repairable! And the ABS tends to transmit shocks and vibrations right to the rackrails and the gear that's mounted to it. That's why so many folks opt for the SKB "rack-within-a-rack" shockmount design.
    The BEST plastic cases that I've run across were by TechnoMad. They are "roto-molded" so they are much thicker and stronger than other ABS cases. Now they mainly make speakers from that stuff, but check them out.
    Large SKB cases can have a unique problem: They tend to slide around in the van much more so than a "wood" case. This can be a real PIA! This is true of their musical instrument cases, too.
    For smaller stuff like mics and delicate accesories, Pelican (ABS) cases are hard to beat. And for the plastic-coated wood rack...ARMADILLO!!
    For guitar/bass cases, I like the TKL (wood) line, but they can be a bit heavier. Well worth it. When I take my recording mics out on a remote, I have a pair of old Anvil cases originally made for Alembic basses...everything gets thrown into those puppies.
    Stay clear of Gator cases. They are thin, flimsy versions of SKB. Sort of like the Behringer of cases!
  3. pr0gr4m

    pr0gr4m Distinguished Member

    Feb 9, 2005
    South Florida
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    Don't forget the Tackle Box!


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