ProSoundWeb Community

Please login or register.

Login with username, password and session length
Advanced search  
Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Down

Author Topic: Case Builders Unite  (Read 4785 times)

(BJ) Benjamin Fisher

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 389
Case Builders Unite
« on: December 11, 2009, 09:22:06 pm »

I am about to start my attempt at building a couple ATA flight style cases and would like to have some input, suggestions, and tips from those you have done this before. If I have good success, I would like to be able to start building and selling cases to locals. After some research, it looks as if it could be a decent money maker for me.

I've done some online research, but more is always great before taking on a task. I will be ordering through Penn Elcom (NJ). Below is a list of products I have gotten prices on, for various case ideas. If you have pictures of your cases, please post! I want to build cases that are professional looking and not some junk thrown together. ATA Flight style only.

Various parts list and parts # from Penn Elcom:
S0740   Large Grooved Rivet
S1090/UNC   ¼-20 X 1.5 Phillips Head Screw - Zinc
6001   ¼-20 Tee Nut (9/16) 4-Prong
R0828   Rack Rail
C0651Z   Large Ball Corner w/Offset - Zinc
E0775/2000   1 3/16 X 1 3/16 Single Angle Extrusion
E0825/2000   Hybrid Valance For 3/8 Wood
W9008   Swivel Caster w/ Brake
W9000   Swivel Caster  
W8375   3" Side Castor
F3852   Plastic Leveling Foot
F1558   Rubber feet
H1064Z   Recessed Flip Handle
1222   4-Hole Tight Radius Brace - Zinc
L907/915Z   Standard Medium Latch with offset
1519   Small Lift Off Hinge
W0968Z   Recessed Caster Dish
H2000   13" Telescoping Handle
2119   Lid Stay Black Nylon Strapping
9967   Telescoping Table Leg Assembly Black
3232LKLK   2 Unit Lockable Rack Drawer Black
R1194/2UK   2 Unit Rack Shelf Black
R1286/1UVK   1 Unit Vented Rack Panel
R1286/2UVK   2 Unit Vented Rack Panel
R1286/3UVK   3 Unit Vented Rack Panel
4510   2lb 1" Ester Foam 54"x72"
4610   1" Plank Foam 24"x108"
M8421   BLACK ABS Laminate Sheet 4x8
Logged
BJ Fisher
Stealthy Sound
Columbus,OH

John Stoffel

  • Jr. Member
  • **
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 73
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2009, 10:04:39 pm »

I assume you have the right shop tools. Good Luck. IMO Penn/ Elcom have the best stuff in the biz.

John
Logged
FOH/ Monitor Engineer
fohmixer@yahoo.com

Jim Cutshall

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 378
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2009, 10:12:27 pm »

be prepared to buy yourself a CNC machine if you are serious about this.  the case shop in my building bought one when they started and it's the only way to do it
Logged

Tim McCulloch

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 0
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2009, 10:49:15 pm »

Hi Benjamin-

Case building ain't easy until you do it full time, so be prepared for some frustration and re-work.  Once you factor in what your time is worth you'd probably be better off buying (or consider it tuition at Casebuilders U), but frankly it's worth making a few to appreciate the craftsmanship of good case builders.

You might be able to purchase foam locally if you're willing to buy a lot.  I think our local producer has a $250 minimum order now, but that re-foamed a pair of 52 input console cases.  At any rate if you can justify the minimum it will be much cheaper than ordering from a case supplier.  Ditto for the ABS, probably a big minimum order if you buy from a plastics wholesaler but cheaper per S.F.

Like Jim said, if you get serious about this, you'll be looking at auctions for CNC machines, air drive rivet tools, Cleko blind panel holders...

Making nice cases can be rewarding, but learn to make some cheap crap, too, so you'll have an income. Wink

Have fun, good luck.

Tim Mc
Logged
"Will you stand by me against the cold night, or are you afraid of the ice?" Crack The Sky

(BJ) Benjamin Fisher

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 389
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #4 on: December 12, 2009, 03:45:52 am »

What do you use to cut the foam?

I have all of the air and necessary tools minus pneumatic rivet gun which I'm getting.

Do you guys have any pics of your work?

Any tips for typical problems that will arise?

**EDIT** Anyone know of a place that I could get some custom (etched maybe?) metal Tags/Nameplates made that I could rivet on the cases?
Logged
BJ Fisher
Stealthy Sound
Columbus,OH

Bob Leonard

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 4669
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #5 on: December 12, 2009, 08:01:50 am »

Benjamin,
In your other thread you've asked how to succeed in this business. While making a case or two may fill some time and waste some money it won't enhance your appearance with the paying customers regardless of how well the cases are made.

If this is a part of the business plan it's a part you should remove.

Take a look at the link below. These are the cases I use and to be honest if you can't make cases at least this good you shouldn't make them at all.

http://roadreadycases.cust.shopatron.com/dyn_category.php?k= 113874
Logged
The roar of the grease paint, the smell of the crowd.

(BJ) Benjamin Fisher

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 389
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #6 on: December 12, 2009, 08:09:17 am »

Bob Leonard wrote on Sat, 12 December 2009 07:01

Benjamin,
In your other thread you've asked how to succeed in this business. While making a case or two may fill some time and waste some money it won't enhance your appearance with the paying customers regardless of how well the cases are made.

If this is a part of the business plan it's a part you should remove.

Take a look at the link below. These are the cases I use and to be honest if you can't make cases at least this good you shouldn't make them at all.

 http://roadreadycases.cust.shopatron.com/dyn_category.php?k= 113874

I've never even built a case, so I certainly cant say this is a "business". And even if it ever was, It would have nothing to do with whatever direction I go in as far as SR is concerned. Who knows, I could completely suck at building a case Smile

I appreciate your concern, as I am here to learn and grow. Building cases is just something that interests me, and something I could do during my free week days.
Logged
BJ Fisher
Stealthy Sound
Columbus,OH

Bob Hulme

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 350
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #7 on: December 12, 2009, 11:13:32 am »

Benjamin, If you want to do a good job of this, check out this site.  
http://www.do-it-yourselfroadcases.com/home.html

I spent the 30 or 40 bucks for the video and it was worth every penny. The guy even phoned me up to see how I was getting along. Great guy. You can order the Penn Elcom parts through him and get a decent discount because he does a lot of volume and He's made a deal with them to do that.

Hope this helps,   Bob H  
Logged
"I finally thought I had the rat race won, then along came faster rats"

(BJ) Benjamin Fisher

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 389
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #8 on: December 12, 2009, 11:29:13 am »

Bob Hulme wrote on Sat, 12 December 2009 10:13

Benjamin, If you want to do a good job of this, check out this site.  
http://www.do-it-yourselfroadcases.com/home.html

I spent the 30 or 40 bucks for the video and it was worth every penny. The guy even phoned me up to see how I was getting along. Great guy. You can order the Penn Elcom parts through him and get a decent discount because he does a lot of volume and He's made a deal with them to do that.

Hope this helps,   Bob H  

I came across that site during my research, but hadnt heard any reviews of the DVD, so I was a little skeptical. I have a tax ID number and the prices PE have given me are pretty much the same as the prices he lists, if not a little cheaper on some things. I'll have to think about that DVD!
Logged
BJ Fisher
Stealthy Sound
Columbus,OH

Tom Manchester

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 3034
    • http://www.electrosoundsystems.com
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #9 on: December 12, 2009, 01:21:42 pm »

I've found a standard Jig saw with a fine tooth wood blade works well for cutting case foam. It's a hell of a lot cleaner of an edge and probably 10x as fast vs. using a razor knife, especially on stuff that's >1/2" thick.

Get an electric compound miter saw with appropriate blade for cutting the extrusion, you will wear yourself out quickly with a hand saw. It doesn't have to be expensive or fancy, just good quality. Check Craigslist or Flea Markets.

Good luck! Case building can be frustrating but rewarding. Once you get the materials in bulk and get the hang of it, as long as you have the time to do it, you can save a lot of money on cases for custom applications.
Logged
-Tom
Electro Sound Systems

(BJ) Benjamin Fisher

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 389
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #10 on: December 12, 2009, 02:51:39 pm »

Thanks Tom. I've got nothin but time!
Logged
BJ Fisher
Stealthy Sound
Columbus,OH

Rick Powell

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 252
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #11 on: December 12, 2009, 03:06:48 pm »

Dyslexic case builders untie!

Another good method for cutting foam is a double-blade carving knife, the kind you'd use for a turkey or roast.  You can cut a very straight and vertical line with it, with no snags or hanging chads.  Just take a straightedge and mark your foam with a fine tipped Sharpie, and carefully hold the knife for a vertical cut and follow the line as you go.
Logged
Rick Powell
StudioLive 16:4:2
JTR Triple 8 Mains
Danley TH115 Subwoofers
Bag End TA15 Floor Monitors
Crown xti6000/4000/2000

"There are two types of people...those who divide people into two types, and those who don't."

Bruce Pritchard

  • Newbie
  • *
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 32
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #12 on: December 12, 2009, 03:19:01 pm »

Rick Powell wrote on Sat, 12 December 2009 14:06

Dyslexic case builders untie!

Another good method for cutting foam is a double-blade carving knife, the kind you'd use for a turkey or roast.  You can cut a very straight and vertical line with it, with no snags or hanging chads.  Just take a straightedge and mark your foam with a fine tipped Sharpie, and carefully hold the knife for a vertical cut and follow the line as you go.

You mean electric right? Razz
Logged

Rick Powell

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 252
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #13 on: December 12, 2009, 04:42:37 pm »

Electric Very Happy

Logged
Rick Powell
StudioLive 16:4:2
JTR Triple 8 Mains
Danley TH115 Subwoofers
Bag End TA15 Floor Monitors
Crown xti6000/4000/2000

"There are two types of people...those who divide people into two types, and those who don't."

Jeff Wheeler

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 2364
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #14 on: December 12, 2009, 06:07:39 pm »

Hi, BJ, I hope you don't mind an idea.  I have looked on The Google for "DIY case kits" and not found anything.  If someone sold all the hardware and a simple instruction sheet for putting it all together, people could potentially save money by purchasing a kit, buying their lumber locally, and doing their own assembly.  Obviously most people will not own a rivet gun, but if you sold a kit and plan that customers could put together with common power tools, that could be a good little business.

It costs over $100 to UPS a mid-sized rack case or road trunk.  Just reducing that to $20 for shipping a box of casters, ball corners, rails, screws, etc. might give people with spare time a good cost savings.  But it's a pain to find all that hardware.  Since you have already done most of the work ... draw some plans and sell kits. Smile
Logged
Jeff Wheeler, wannabe sound guy / moonlight DJ

David Little

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 363
    • http://www.dblittle.com
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #15 on: December 12, 2009, 07:58:21 pm »

Save yourself some time and frustration - use the double angle extrusions for corners and the break-apart T&G for lids. Check your local fastener wholesalers - shipping tee-nuts, screws and rivets can get costly.

There is a very narrow margin in standard cases. To make a living you will need to target the custom case market. It helps if one of your customers write a column in one of the trade rags. (RIP Mark Amundson)

David Little

http://dblittle.com
Logged
http://www.dblittle.com/catalog/images/dblit310x90b.gif

(BJ) Benjamin Fisher

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 389
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #16 on: December 12, 2009, 07:59:48 pm »

Jeff Wheeler wrote on Sat, 12 December 2009 17:07

Hi, BJ, I hope you don't mind an idea.  I have looked on The Google for "DIY case kits" and not found anything.  If someone sold all the hardware and a simple instruction sheet for putting it all together, people could potentially save money by purchasing a kit, buying their lumber locally, and doing their own assembly.  Obviously most people will not own a rivet gun, but if you sold a kit and plan that customers could put together with common power tools, that could be a good little business.

It costs over $100 to UPS a mid-sized rack case or road trunk.  Just reducing that to $20 for shipping a box of casters, ball corners, rails, screws, etc. might give people with spare time a good cost savings.  But it's a pain to find all that hardware.  Since you have already done most of the work ... draw some plans and sell kits. Smile

Not a bad idea...I'll chew on it Smile

Most of my business would come locally, so shipping wouldnt be much of an issue, but once it gets out of my area I can see what you are saying.


Thanks guys....keep em comin'!
Logged
BJ Fisher
Stealthy Sound
Columbus,OH

Marlow Wilson

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Offline Offline
  • Posts: 533
Re: Case Builders Unite
« Reply #17 on: December 12, 2009, 09:36:31 pm »

Bob Leonard wrote on Sat, 12 December 2009 07:01

Benjamin,
In your other thread you've asked how to succeed in this business. While making a case or two may fill some time and waste some money it won't enhance your appearance with the paying customers regardless of how well the cases are made.

If this is a part of the business plan it's a part you should remove.

Take a look at the link below. These are the cases I use and to be honest if you can't make cases at least this good you shouldn't make them at all.

 http://roadreadycases.cust.shopatron.com/dyn_category.php?k= 113874


+1

If you need income try to find something more certain.  If you need a hobby start soldering stuff.  If you crave sawdust, check out the Bill Fitzmaurice site or start building something in greater demand and to wider audience.  I have ventured into virtually every aspect of SR/music and many other aspects of life that exist in the gray area between hobbies and real work.  The result?  I have way too many power tools and sound equipment that brings me joy and modest returns.  For a while I also built concrete countertops did commercial cabinetry.  There was way more money there than in SR, but still less steady and more work than my day job.  Last year I also DJ'd three nights a week while off from school.  I do SR because it makes me smile, and as a part time hobby it is modest relative golf and fancy cars, balanced only by the income part.   If I tried to pay myself for the time I spend finding 'deals' and engaging in 'training' (reading stuff like this on PSW) my business would be broke, something I suspect is true of many here.

I'd try to establish connections in your community and pursue business ventures where there is actual opportunity.  Follow demand, don't try to create it.  You'll find there isn't a very big market for b-grade custom cases.
Logged
I should probably be doing something else right now....
Pages: 1 2 [All]   Go Up
 

Page created in 0.019 seconds with 17 queries.