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11-18-2018, 03:34 AM   #1
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Hard case in car, smaller case for field

Hey everyone,

Iíve had an idea and was wondering if anyone has done similar and has any tips and tricks they could give me.

I carry a fair amount of gear, Kp gripped, 16-50, 17-50, 18-135, 70-200, 35mm prime, flash, cables/chargers etc, and a mavic air drone lus accessories for that as well. Not a huge amount, but enough.

Depending on what Iím doing obviously depends on what I need. Am I doing landscape/hiking stuff, my part time gig as a first responder photographer, being a first responder myself, a friends party, that sort of thing.

My idea is to have a pelican style hard case (1510 or similar) in the back of my car with all the gear in it. I would then have one or two smaller soft bags to put things in based on what Iím shooting and needing at the time. Iím also thinking of another smaller hard case that I could throw the Kp in, possibly ungripped, with a short lens on it for if Iím the first responder myself and need to throw it in the back of a truck or vehicle that isnít mine and space is limited.

So, the question. Has anyone been in a similar situation? Anything to stay away from? Configurations that helped?

If you need more info let me know, but hopefully someone out there has felt similar pain.

11-18-2018, 05:20 AM   #2
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Seems like a fantastic idea.
11-18-2018, 05:35 AM   #3
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I have a modest-sized Pelican case that has a Pelican-made soft, well-padded briefcase-like bag that fits into it exactly. The latter has flexible dividers, a hand carry and a shoulder strap, tripod straps, and can be opened entirely along one side, or just along the top edge (= what would be the top when using the shoulder strap or hand-carry). It's a decent compromise between hard protection when traveling and soft-light carry when on location. Disadvantages? You must fit & carry everything in the soft case, and the latter, despite the double openings, is not as convenient for accessing equipment as a traditional shoulder bag. Also, if you do take a tripod, it must be carried outside the hard case then attached to the soft case when the latter is pulled out for use. Pelican also makes a tray-like insert for the hard case which provides less padding but significantly more room inside the hard case in the event you want to carry that to your location.
11-18-2018, 08:49 AM   #4
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IF you spend a lot of time working out of your car, this is a great idea

11-18-2018, 10:56 AM   #5
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I keep my gear in a Pelican case at home (a) to keep it safe and (b) to keep the dust/animal hair off it (I live with 3 cats, a dog, 2 guinea pigs, a wife and a daughter so 'stuff' gets everywhere!). On the odd occasion that I do go out to shoot (I am medically disabled so a bunch of stuff has to align before I can venture out) I use an Ape Case holster (Ape Case ACPRO650 Standard DSLR Holster (Black) ACPRO650 B&H ) to carry the camera and lens (up to 300mm), batteries, cards, etc. which is attached to a police style tactical waist belt I found on Ebay. Any additional long lenses I may want to take are in protective padded bags that also attach to the belt.

I have an 11" Op/Tech Accessory Pack (Accessory Pack | OP/TECH USA ) that carries all my short lenses (in their original pouches), lens brushes and anything else I might need with me. The Op/Tech pack is a fantastic little bag and well worth the money and I would buy another one tomorrow if anything were to happen to this one! I did make some extra dividers to give me better sizing/flexibility for the interior.

I made/adapted a shoulder harness system that attaches to the belt to help carry the weight if it gets too heavy on the hips (I also have osteoporosis) and can clip my camera either to short straps on the harness or to my Op/Tech Sling strap using the same fittings.

The whole system works well for my needs which are non-standard to say the least.

Last edited by Tako Kichi; 11-18-2018 at 07:25 PM.
11-18-2018, 10:58 AM   #6

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I have a very large two layer condition 1 hard case. A large Canon shoulder/messenger bag. Various sized sling/shoulder/waist bags. What I pack and take depends on what I am doing and how long I'll be gone. Could be any combination of the above.
11-18-2018, 12:16 PM - 1 Like   #7
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Just a note to say that leaving camera gear in a car long term in high summer is not advisable, as the grease in lenses will melt and migrate. The lens care leaflets say as much and warn against it.

For the rest of the year, it's a great idea.

11-18-2018, 12:48 PM   #8
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remember that Pelican isn't the only option

I found member's mark cases on sale at sams that I like a lot

and seem very similar

Last edited by aslyfox; 11-18-2018 at 01:48 PM.
11-18-2018, 01:40 PM   #9
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I do same using a large Pelican case in the trunk and then using my car as home base to return periodically to change items in my sling bag. this works for weddings and long events.
I did note that if the case lid cannot clear the open trunk easily, that can be a pain when there's a body strapped around my neck and I'm navigating one handed, FWIW.

Also, when relocking my car, I need to disable the chirp so as not to disrupt the event.

Otherwise, it is a fine solution. Good luck
11-18-2018, 10:30 PM - 1 Like   #10

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Sounds like a good plan. I do something similar for multi-day photo trips. 2 (or more) camera bags of different sizes go into my camper van. Each morning I decide which bag and gear to carry.

Be careful when exchanging gear at your vehicle. Bystanders may notice you swapping camera gear and try to steal the case when you leave. Even if you lock the case and also lock it to your car, saving your gear, there's the inconvenience of a smashed car window from a failed theft.
11-19-2018, 06:40 AM - 1 Like   #11
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A lot depends on how secure is the area that you normally park. It doesn't take long for someone to become known as the guy with $$$$ of camera equipment always in his car.
11-19-2018, 06:44 AM   #12
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insurance will cover part of the loss perhaps all

but not the aggravation or the feeling of being attacked

" let's be careful out there "
11-20-2018, 02:04 AM   #13
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Hey everyone,

Thanks for your answers and ideas, and for the concern as well. Itís nice to see people caring about others.

To cover off on a couple of points:

- The other point of getting one of these style cases is so I can easily wheel it car-> apartment -> office etc instead of yet another bag to juggle with me, so it wont be in the car overnight.

- If it is left in my car during the day it is in a secure car park, darkest legal tint on windows, plus one of those pull over blinds. Things are very secure, effective at keeping a lot of the heat out, and its impossible to see whatís in there.

- If I am working from this at an event, where I park my car will also be a restricted area, inaccessible without the correct credentials so Iím not too concerned about that either.

Iím thinking this is a go to option for me. Iíll investigate the different brand offerings and let you all know how it goes once I have it sorted!
11-20-2018, 04:56 AM   #14
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thanks for promising to let us know how you make out in this endeavor

good luck

if you haven't done so already, consider listing your equipment here:

and at
11-20-2018, 12:21 PM   #15
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There's a small Pentax-suitcase:
Pentax SLR Koffer anthrazit, AussenmaŖe: 24 x 33: Kamera

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