As an avid collector of high quality instruments I am always mindful about the importance of protecting such items especially when travelling. Some manufacturers a supply case with instruments, but it’s always smart to invest in the best protection.
A number of years ago I attended a martin Simpson workshop and noticed that his Sobell acoustics were all in bright carbon fibre cases. I discovered that these were “Carlton cases” and over the years I have had the owner Keith Carlton make me a number of cases for electrics and acoustics. My Sobell acoustics all come with Carlton cases as standard and these cases now are so in demand that there is a six month wait for these. Of course professional musicians and especially orchestra players appreciate that their instrument is their meal ticket so a strong portable case is invaluable.
Instrument cases can be made of all manner of materials and it’s useful to pay attention to what the case is made of. Some cheaper plastic cases don’t afford a great deal of protection. The best cases are in my view made from carbon fibre which combines strength and lightness. In recent years I have become fascinated by ukuleles and of course have sought out good cases for the higher end instruments. Collings make great ukes and always supply good basic cases for all their instruments. These are however not made from carbon fibre but will do a perfectly good job.
Soft cases are usually not a great option for an expensive instrument, but there is one company that is bucking the trend in this respect. I came across Mono cases recently and have bought one for a tenor uke and one for a concert uke. Both are extremely light and well made. The Mono M80 tenor cases weighs under three pounds, see http://monocreators.com/ukulele-cases/ . These are hard to find in the UK and usually require a special order. The other hard cases I have discovered for ukuleles in recent times are to my knowledge only available in Japan. One of the lightest and best is made by Aranjuez and made in China. I picked one up from Tokyo and it’s just superb. I also bought a great ukulele hard case from the superb Ukulele Mania in Tokyo which appears to be another carbon fibre one, heavier than the Aranjuez, but really well built. All these cases are really well padded and have excellent catches.
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