Hard cases with pluckable foam

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by BetterSense, Jun 20, 2011.

  1. BetterSense

    BetterSense Member

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    I recently bought an RB67 thatcame in a black plastic case with pluckable open-cell foam. This is really cool because I plucked out spaces for all my backs and lenses. I want to have a similar case for 35mm. Does anyone know any inexpensive cases that come with pluckable foam? Has anyone had any luck making hot-wire cutter and making a custom case using regular foam?
     
  2. largely

    largely Subscriber

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    Several years ago a freind and I made a hotwire cutter using a model train transformer and a piece of nichrome wire formed into a loop to cut some foam. Worked really slick.
    I don't remember where we got the wire.
    The case you refered to was probably a Pelican case. They're not cheap but they are indestructable. You can also get pluckable foam from Pelican.

    good luck,
    Larry
     
  3. mr rusty

    mr rusty Member

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    Pluckable foam is horrid stuff. Bits of foam come off and get everywhere and over time it starts degrading and goes powdery. It will also absorb any moisture it comes into contact with. I wouldn't use it any where near a camera.

    By far the best foam to use is a reasonably dense closed cell polyetheylene foam like plastazote. Its inert and waterproof and can be either carved using a very sharp blade and built up in layers, or machined using an ordinary wood working router and templates. Take some care/time and you can make a long lasting and very neat insert
     
  4. jeffreyg

    jeffreyg Subscriber

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    Several years ago I bought generic dividers that had a somewhat firm but flexible foam in nylon sleeves that had Velcro and could be arranged as needed. I have also used a foam liner for sleeping bags purchased at a camping supply. It is about 1/2 inch thick and easily cut with a box cutter and it has not degenerated over a period of at least ten years. I used it to line a waterproof duffel bag and used the dividers to section it. When traveling I use a Tamrac camera backpack - they also have similar foam dividers of various sizes.

    Just some other ideas.

    http://www.jeffreyglasser.com/
     
  5. mgb74

    mgb74 Subscriber

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    I've used quality, high density grey foam from an specialty foam shop with a fillet knife to cut. Same stuff that's used for electronic instruments. Solid piece on bottom and on top. Custom cut piece in between. Nice thing is that you can cut multiple pieces to match different equipment. I've read somewhere that freezing the foam helps, but I haven't tried that.
     
  6. Dan Fromm

    Dan Fromm Member

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    Pelican cases use a pluckable closed cell foam that lasts very well. I used to carry my Nikon kit in a Domke bag. After the bag and contents went astray in 1986, I replaced my stolen cameras and lenses with slightly more modern ones and the bag with a Pelican 1600. Still have it and the foam is still in good order.

    What are you thinking of?
     
  7. btaylor

    btaylor Subscriber

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    I have found the pluckable foam durable and simple to use, but not the best thing for equipment that comes in and out of the case frequently. The foam cubes start to come off where the gear moves in and out. It is also somewhat expensive to buy the inserts (my experience has been with Pelican cases). When I re-foam a case I prefer to buy the closed cell foam from a foam store and cut to fit my equipment using the layering technique. The store should be able to sell you glue for putting the layers together too. Here's the trick on cutting the stuff, use an electric carving knife, like you'd use on a turkey. I got mine at Target for about $20. The guy at the foam store showed me the specialty cutter they used, and it's just like the carving knife except for the supports to keep it square.

    I have used this technique with a few Zero Halliburton cases I hunted up on fleabay. Using the undulating foam I have a few that will hold gear firmly without custom inserts which is handy for specialty kits to be taken into the field.