Storing a lot of photo gear, advice request

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous Equipment' started by segedi, Dec 9, 2011.

  1. segedi

    segedi Member

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    I have the following and really need a better system for accessing gear as needed. I currently just use a couple of bins, but having things stacked on top of each other probably isn't the best for the gear and hinders finding and using things as I need them. I was thinking a tool chest or something like that, but thought I'd ask the group to see what you are all using.

    2 Medium format slr bodies
    6 MF backs
    5 MF lenses
    4 Rangefinders
    10 RF lenses
    3 35mm SLRs
    6 35mm lenses
    Lightmeter
    6x12 Pinhole camera

    Thanks,
    Kevin
     
  2. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    Kevin, I have significantly more than that, I find that good quality bookshelves work best for me in the studio. On 4 bookshelves I can manage to fit my entire 4x5/8x10 Sinar F/P system with ~dozen or so lenses, extension rails, Sinar Shutter, reflex viewer, and a pile of accessories, a 4 lens Hasselblad system, a 2 body Mamiya RB67 outfit with a full set of lenses, my 35mm/digital bodies & lenses, 5 Broncolor packs, a dozen heads, reflectors, speedrings, grids, snoots, etc and numerous shoebox size storage totes for filters, cables, cords, etc. More than enough room and everything is organized so I can find what I need/want immediately.
     
  3. segedi

    segedi Member

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    Thanks, I've considered bookshelves as well, but am worried (maybe overly so) about dust.
    And nice bit of kit you have!
     
  4. bobwysiwyg

    bobwysiwyg Subscriber

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    I don't know if you intend to have them in a "show" position, or just good storage. My gear is in the basement, which is very dry, year-round. I use Black and Decker plastic cupboards, for want of a better term. You assemble them, they have two doors and 5 shelves. They are not air tight, but definitely close well enough to keep dust out. They are made of molded plastic panels and such, you assemble them. Quite durable.
     
  5. Buje

    Buje Member

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    I bought a five-drawer chest at a garage sale for $10. I sanded off the cheap spray paint-varnish and refinished with polyurethane varnish. Looks great! It holds 35mm, 645, 6x7, and LF lenses and bodies, flashes and miscellaneous stuff.

    I admit I could use another but meet some spousal resistance.
     
  6. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    I'm thinking of getting (after the holidays) a rolling toolbox with the many drawers. Figuring on putting the bigger lenses in the bottom drawers, accessories and filters at the top, small lenses in a medium sized drawer. A toolbox like one of these, but perhaps not this very one...

    [​IMG]
     
  7. segedi

    segedi Member

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    Definitely for storage as opposed to show. Thanks for the suggestions, will check them out. Now if that nice rolling tool cabinet could be had at a garage sale for $10... It also looks like it might lock, which would be a bonus.
     
  8. epatsellis

    epatsellis Member

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    I've been looking for one for the studio, but getting just the right one with enough drawers that are deep enough (that isn't made by SnapOn or MAC that is...) has so far been fruitless. Some at Sears get close, but not quite.

    erie
     
  9. mike c

    mike c Subscriber

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    erie, try home depot or Loews or other large hardware outfits, they usauly have there own brand of cheap roller tool boxes.

    Mike
     
  10. jcoldslabs

    jcoldslabs Member

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    I've got a number of large Pelican cases with padded divider sets instead of foam and these work great. They hold a lot of gear, they roll, and they can be popped open easily for gear access at any time. Just one case contains: a Speed Graphic body, a Toyo 45A body, four lenses, a Zero Image 4x5 pinhole with two extension frames, film holders, meters, 2 Polaroid 405 backs, two Polaroid 545 holders, a Horseman 6x9 back, filters, cable releases, lens hoods, etc. Plus they load into the trunk of the car directly without needing to fill up a separate camera bag.

    Did I mention the moisture and shock protection, too?

    Jonathan
     
  11. paul ron

    paul ron Member

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    The rolling tool chest is nice if you have the room for em.

    But for stacking in closets I am putting my cameras in zip loc bags with silica packets, then putting em in portable hand tool boxes like these...


    http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_00959423000P?prdNo=16&blockNo=16&blockType=G16

    I get em at Sears, K-Mart n Home Depot for around $15 or so when I see em on sale. Take the top shelf out n they can hold a complete MF kit. Label the outside, it makes finding my stuff that much easier.


    .
     
  12. Discoman

    Discoman Member

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    I got one of those sunglasses cases with the locking doors and locking drawer. the local furniture store was going out of business and they sold it for around $40
    it isn't airtight, so a little dust builds up, so stuff gets stored with caps on and cameras folded.
    the drawers aren't airtight either, but you unlock the one and open it, then another drawer can be accessed from above it-almost no dust gets into it, so film holders, lenses, etc gets stored there. flashes, reflectors, and cables get stored in the main drawer.
    shelves, sides, and front are all thicker lexan or acrylic plastic, so they do flex a little if you put some weight, as in a few cameras on them.
    also, you can put it out in a room and turn the light on, so every camera that isn't in use becomes a display collection, if you are into that. :smile:
     
  13. fmajor

    fmajor Member

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    Admittedly, i don't have one of these, but if i were looking to store my photogear this is what i'd do.

    Buy one of those smaller, inexpensive *locking* gun-safe/cabinet and retro-fit appropriate shelving. They're not heavy, are lockable and usually can be configured to have a filtered-air dehumidifier/circulation fan. I've seen them at Costco, Gander Mountain, Cabela's or similar places - though not sure if Calgary has these particular stores.

    However, you could look in any large hunting/fishing retailer stores and i certain you'd find one there.
     
  14. mgb74

    mgb74 Subscriber

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    The tool chest works well as long as the depth of the various drawers meets your needs. The locking aspect isn't that big a deal as the thief can just roll it right out - at least you don't have to worry about him hurting his back. I've seen commercial studios use these.

    You probably need some sort of divider/padding to keep some items from tipping when the drawer is open or closed.

    But I use plastic containers in a closed cabinet. I try to use the smaller sizes so that a) nothing is on top of something else in any one container and b) the contents of each container is relatively consistent (i.e. "folding cameras", "Olympus OM"). The containers are stacked on a shelf, but only 2 or 3 high.
     
  15. Curt

    Curt Subscriber

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    A safe.
     
  16. AlbertZeroK

    AlbertZeroK Member

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    I agree, this is how I store my gear. One box for EOS (digital and film) plus lenses and flash plus room for batteries, filters and memory cards and business cards. My other box has my Pentax 67ii with five lenses, a filter set and misc junk. My third box was just vacated by a gx680 and will like hold now my Polaroid 250's, film and my g2.

    I also have a back pack I use for packing gear in, nice and versital. I carried in a Polaroid 250, g2 and EOS 3 with a 50mm f1.4 plus 30 rolls of film to the amusement park just this weekend, works great.

    The rest is stored in clear stackable plastic tubs on the shelf in the basement.

    With cats in the house, shelves are a horrible idea in our basement :smile:
     
  17. tkamiya

    tkamiya Member

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    If you use a safe for storage, please be careful.... Some folks stored watches in fire-retardant safes and ended up with pitting and corrosion because materials used for fire protection emitted enough gas and moisture in this sealed environment.

    This is a second-hand information and I don't intend to experience it myself!
     
  18. Trask

    Trask Subscriber

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    I use a cabinet from Ikea, in the PAX series, that has roll-out drawers. I find that if the shelves in a cabinet are too deep, you can't really see what's at the back. With roll-out drawers, nothing goes unseen. So far I'm pretty pleased.