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Old Jun 1, 2019, 11:37 PM   #1
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Default Gear Question

Iím trying to find a way to keep approximately 18 lenses in a case of some sort that can be packed in the backseat area of a half-ton pickup truck. Iíve been using the variety of camera bags I have that are really too big for me to carry, but do offer places for lenses. The bags take up a lot of room because they canít be stacked and because of their soft sides and top, they get squished down a bit when I put a camping chair on top. Plus thereís a lot of space above the bags that isnít useable, and that space is soon to be at a high cost - my house is in escrow and Iím soon to become a full-time RVer and my travel trailer is pretty small.

Iím thinking of something like Pelican cases but donít know what size I should get (or should I get 2 - that could get expensive quickly).

I just thought about maybe thinking about a small plastic drawer or two, that would allow easier access to the lenses than trying to partly unload the backseat area every time I want to use a lens thatís in the case. Iíd have to do some measuring to see if thereís something plastic available that would fit, but I think my first choice would be a case of some sort.

Does anyone have any good ideas for me? Any experience with alternatives to Pelican? Iím thinking that Iíd want some sort of divider system instead of the foam, just because I have as many lenses as I do.

I will continue to use Tamrac bags for the cameras and a couple of lenses, that seems to work well as a walk-about, general use and tourist type of thing. For hiking I have lens cases I put on the hip strap of a hydration day pack I have. That way I have lots of water, I can reach the couple of lenses easily without having to take off the pack. Itís just how to permanently organize and carry all my lenses.
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Old Jun 2, 2019, 3:28 AM   #2
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Wow, this sounds like a kind of pleasing problem!
When I had fewer lenses than today I made innards for a hard plastic carry-on suitcase. I used thin plywood for the dividers, and cellular plastic to form-fit every department. So I had a ready-to-go well protected case for all my camera gear.
But that was then, I soon bought more lenses and new camera bodies, and the lenses needed a cupboard rather than a case.
For yor needs, I come to think of the metallic gear drawers used in garages and by building workers. Of course you'd have to pad the departments for your lenses, but I think they are available in different sizes and with movable dividers.
Your new (maybe not so new) way of living: "where ever I lay my scarf", sounds like a permanent adventure. Lots of images to come?
Kjell
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Old Jun 2, 2019, 6:04 AM   #3
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Default Different life-style

My life-style has turned the opposite direction to yours, Harriet. As me and my wife Christina has expanded our bird-keeping, we can't leave home for extended periods of time. And if we want to take a week's holidays away, we have to arrange with our not-so-far-living son to take care of the birds while we're away.
I have had my fair share of travelling in life, but as my family moved a bit to often when I was a kid, I am now very satisfied with having found my spot on the globe. Not just a house, but a place to call home.



#1 My place as seen from the forest side, the forest we like to call ours even though it isn't. But we are the only two-legged things who moves around in it.


#2 Our bird-house interior


#3 And my resolution to your problem. Since the boys moved away to form their own families, for the first time in my life I have my own room!

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Old Jun 2, 2019, 2:02 PM   #4
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Great suggestion - went looking at Home Depot's website and there's several companies that put out stacking tool boxes, the first one being a bigger one with a retractable handle and wheels, the smaller ones can stack on top of it. Maybe some thin plywood or the like as dividers, wrapped in some sort of foam...

Guess that means the next time I go into town I'll stop at both Lowes and Home Depot, along with Harbor Freight (a discount chain specializing in tools etc.) to see what they look like and how difficult it will be to modify them for my lenses.

I still haven't ruled out the Pelican cases, they are expensive but look really nicely organized for photo equipment.

I had been keeping the lenses in a cabinet for the most part, but then I'd throw them all into the various bags I have when I'd go on an RV/camping trip (if you want to call RVing "camping"). Last summer's 3 month trip to Alaska convinced me that I really needed to find a better way of dealing with it all, but until I put the house on the market and started moving out, I had no real incentive to do anything about it.

How many birds do you have now? That looks like quite the aviary!

The funny thing about having some place that feels like home - I realized this spring (have sensed it but not quite admitted it) that "home" to me is my travel trailer, not my house. So it was time to sell.
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Old Jun 3, 2019, 5:15 PM   #5
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G'day Harriet

Back in film-camera days I had a similar 'problem' and used lawn bowls cases with the foam inserted - then I profiled each camera body or lens or flashgun and razor-cut each item to fit

Then I needed a second case - so the equipment was divided into 'usually needed' vs 'sometimes needed' categories for my carrying around in the car

These bowls cases were of plywood perimeter construction, solid enough for me to up-end them and stand on them for shooting over the crowd if needed.

However, if you want metal / aluminium cases, seek out some for I.T. / electronics technicians. I have seen many about 20-24" long x 10-14" deep x 6" thick with pre-slit foam in side. All you do is remove what is not needed and it's all there waiting you

Hope this helps
Phil
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Old Jun 9, 2019, 10:29 PM   #6
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I ended up going to Harbor Freight and buying 3 different sizes of their Apache hard cases. They are knock-offs of the Pelican cases. I havenít yet started to figure out what Iím going to put in each one yet, but I think they will work for my purposes. Buying them was a bit of buying therapy, my buyers backed out so my house is back on the market, which means Iím going to end up paying to get the septic system repaired out of savings, instead of from the proceeds of the sale. With any kind of luck Iíll get another offer soon!

I can post photos and write up my impressions once I sort them out. They come with foam pluck and pull for customization.
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