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Carrying a HSC on your back

Marion 26 Oct 01 - 10:11 PM
Midchuck 26 Oct 01 - 10:48 PM
Sorcha 26 Oct 01 - 11:01 PM
Marion 26 Oct 01 - 11:34 PM
Phil Cooper 26 Oct 01 - 11:35 PM
DonMeixner 27 Oct 01 - 12:13 AM
Gary T 27 Oct 01 - 02:50 AM
JohnInKansas 27 Oct 01 - 02:58 AM
BlueJay 27 Oct 01 - 03:00 AM
JohnInKansas 27 Oct 01 - 03:19 AM
BlueJay 27 Oct 01 - 04:33 AM
Uncle Jaque 27 Oct 01 - 10:23 AM
Phil Cooper 27 Oct 01 - 10:46 AM
Clinton Hammond 27 Oct 01 - 03:32 PM
Seamus Kennedy 27 Oct 01 - 04:08 PM
Grab 27 Oct 01 - 06:40 PM
Marion 28 Oct 01 - 01:07 AM
53 28 Oct 01 - 03:03 PM
Gypsy 28 Oct 01 - 06:18 PM
GUEST,Russ 29 Oct 01 - 09:42 AM
GUEST,Marion 19 Mar 02 - 01:00 PM
Genie 19 Mar 02 - 02:08 PM
GUEST,concerened 11 Jun 13 - 05:23 PM
Leadfingers 11 Jun 13 - 06:18 PM
Mr Happy 12 Jun 13 - 04:53 AM
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Subject: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Marion
Date: 26 Oct 01 - 10:11 PM

Hello all.

I appreciate that hard shell cases are sturdier than gig bags, but they're pretty wearing on the shoulders when you have to go any real distance on foot.

I've seen a setup where there's a system of straps that go around the hard case, then shoulder and waist straps to go around you - but I can't remember if I saw this in real life or in my imagination. Does anyone know what I'm talking about? Do you know who sells them?

Failing that, I'm wondering if anyone has invented their own way for carrying a HSC on the back. I think they're too wide to go into any normal backpack, but perhaps you could lash one to a flattened backpack with bungee cords, or sew yourself a nice wide backpack... does anyone have any strategies to recommend or warn against?

Thanks, Marion


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Midchuck
Date: 26 Oct 01 - 10:48 PM

You mean like this?

Peter.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Sorcha
Date: 26 Oct 01 - 11:01 PM

For what? There is a brand name called "Cushy" or "Cushie" for violin hard cases. It is a padded overbag with shoulder straps. I think Shar &/or Southwest Strings sell them.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Marion
Date: 26 Oct 01 - 11:34 PM

That's it exactly, Peter, thanks. I did look at Elderly but in the guitar case section, so I didn't see it before. Nice to know they really exist. But 40 American? I think I'll take a good look at the picture then make my own.

Sorry, Sorcha, I should have specified guitar. But heck, my fiddle case is so light I can toss it up in the air to myself while skipping along the street.

Marion


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 26 Oct 01 - 11:35 PM

I bought a backaxe at a folk alliance conference a couple years back. It works well, though I noticed that walking a long distance with it put strain on my back between the shoulder blades. It is, for the most part balanced. What I don't like about it is wrapping it around the guitar and figuring out all the straps, without tangling them. Plus you have to take it off the case when you play and put it back together when it's time to go. It is a great idea, though.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: DonMeixner
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 12:13 AM

Marion,

If you plan to make one of these from new materials from the fabric shops don't bother. Webbing and foam with velcro and buckles will cost a bomb. You can't buy the materials for the job for $40.00 American. From what I can see of the rig the buckles alone will cost $35.00.

Now used materials is a different deal. Try to get everything from a military surplus store. And good luck.

Don


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Gary T
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 02:50 AM

...perhaps you could lash one to a flattened backpack with bungee cords...--this hints at what might be the most satisfactory approach.

External frame backpacks use a padded waistband to carry the load on your hips, where it is not a particular burden. Their shoulder straps are mainly to keep the pack from falling off backwards, not to carry weight on the shoulders. The discomfort of carrying the weight of a guitar on the shoulders, as mentioned by Phil Cooper, illustrates why you don't want to go that route.

You could remove the pack from the frame, or perhaps buy just the frame itself, then devise some straps to secure the guitar to the packframe. With the load on the hips, long distances should be a snap. Backpackers typically carry 40 to 80 lbs. (about 25-50 kilos, I believe) all day long covering 10 miles or so without suffering.

This could be pricy--good external frame backpacks probably run a few hundred dollars U.S., and I don't know what the frame alone might sell for.

If you pursue this method, bear in mind that the packframe and waistband need to fit your body. Many manufacturers offer different sizes, as well as adjustments on the unit itself, to accomplish this. In other words, if you borrow one from a friend or get a "one size fits all" pack, it may not fit you. That would tend to negate the benefits.

The central point is, if you want to carry an appreciable load for an appreciable distance, you want to use your hips to do it. Shoulders are a poor substitute.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 02:58 AM


I don't recall the name of the outfit, but there was a vendor at the Walnut Valley Festival (Winfield) late September that had a variety of styles.

The simplest was just a bunch of straps, sort of like what's in the clicky above, but their better looking ones were like a soft case that you slip your regular hard case into. That way, when you take it off, all the straps stay hooked up and there's a minimal amount of adjusting to do when you saddle up again.

I'm not able to lay my hands on a newsletter from this year's festival to check on what vendors were there, and I thought these guys were new. A newsletter from last year shows Pegasus Cases from the UK and Blue Heron (1-800-899-9096.) Blue Heron apparently makes soft cases.

Colorado Case Company (Cases/Covers) from Loveland, Colorado is listed as a vendor, but no other info is given for them. Your local guitar dealer could probably look them up - and I vaguely recall that the guys with the backpacks possibly were from Colorado.

I'll see if I can dig out more specific info - if I can find the bottom of the pile of "things to be filed" I may unearth a more recent newsletter.

I've seen enough backpacks around to expect that someone who has one will probably check in and give you some real info.

John


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: BlueJay
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 03:00 AM

I'm surprised they don't offer some sort of padding between the case and your back. I can't imagine walking very far with the case rubbing against my spine. You could probably fashion some kind of pad on your own.

Marion- If I were interested in such a harness, I'd try to make one. I'd go really cheap, and use the shoulder straps from an old backpack or book bag, and a couple of pieces of rope or nylon strap to tie around the case. It sure would be ugly, and may not work as well, but I could make one right now for free.

At this time, the furthest I have to carry my instruments is from the truck to the center of the park, maybe 50 yards. More problematic are the amps. Hmmm. Do they make one for a bass amp? :)

But if I were planning very long or repeated trips, I'd probably spring for the real deal. It would probably be more comfortable in the long run, though I've never used one. And 40 bucks doesn't seem unreasonable to me, if you really intend to use it a lot.

Thanks for the post, Marion. It looks like a good idea, and I've never heard of it till now. BlueJay


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 03:19 AM


Re the amps, and maybe the guitar too -

Several people I know have rigged old golf carts to wheel their bass fiddles around on, and you can pick up pretty good ones at garage sales in my area for 3 to 5 bucks.

Since they're made for rolling on the fairways - oops: we don't get off the paths do we? - they are pretty maneuverable and light weight.

With the golf bag off, you could sit a HSC on the bottom plate and whip a bungee cord around it and be on your way. Most of them fold up too.

With a little mod work, one might also make a pretty good carriage for one or more amps.

The biggest drawback is that you can "park" them and let go. It's pretty tough for someone to make an inconspicuous getaway with a bass fiddle, but a guitar might be another matter. You'd want to keep a close eye, if not always one hand, on the sucker.

John


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: BlueJay
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 04:33 AM

John in Kansas- We actually do business with Colorado Case Company. I'm surprised I didn't think of it before. I'll give them a call next week and see what they know about this. Thanks, BlueJay


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Uncle Jaque
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 10:23 AM

Oh... OK; Hardshell Case. Now I get it.

Back when I was an idealistic (ergo niaeve) young New Hampshire State Trooper, an "HSC" was a MAUSER HSC double-action semi-automatic pistol in caliber .380 (9MM Kurz) which I carried off-duty not on my back, but in a covert little holster tucked under the waistband over the right hip, where it rode generally out of sight but quickly accessable.

One day in the grocery store I squatted down to retreive a can of something from a lower shelf; when I glanced over my shoulder (one gets in the habit of doing that frequently in "the business") there was a lady standing there frozen in obvious terror, ashen white and "deer in the headlights" eyes. Realizing that my shirt-tail had pulled up revealing the handle of that mean little pistol residing beneath, I quickly and appologeticly flipped open my black leather ID case and displayed the ID and big gold badge (the NHSP has about the prettiest badge you are apt to see, BTW)much to her obvious relief.

Thankfully, the only "duty" the HSC was called upon to render was to administer the "Coup de Grace" to a mortally injured racoon I happened accross one night on the way back to the barracks after "O-Days". It did it's job quickly, effectively, and with precision accuracy.

A work of German genius, the HSC was way ahead of it's time in WW II and I was one of the first Lawmen in NH to start carrying one offduty. There were times when it went into a "Domestic disturbance" call in the uniform trouser pocket as a "backup" to the .357 Magnum S&W M-66 service revolver.

Times got tough around '77 (burned out of the SP in '76) and I sold it to a Local Officer who, last I knew, was still packing it when out of uniform.

...But thanks for the clarification.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Phil Cooper
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 10:46 AM

Another solution we've come up with for taking two guitars and other things at festivals, without loading up our arms and straining our shoulders is a Kart-a-bag. Ours folds up compactly for storage but unfolds with two big wheels in front and a smaller set of wheels behind. You can put the guitars on it without the first case falling down, while you're putting the second one on. This has saved my shoulders more than once from the strain that carrying cases a long distance can bring.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Clinton Hammond
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 03:32 PM

What's so hard about carrying gutiar cases?!?!?!?!?!?!

LOL!!!!!

wimps!!!

Actually I really like the look of the back-pack set up posted above... and for 40 bucks y can't go wrong... Except that I bring 2 guitars, a chrome 3 pronged guitar stand and a back pack with a bodhran case hanging off it to my gigs already, so I don't really have another 'back' to put another pack on...

The most important thing abouyt carrying loads any distance is blance... I have my kit balanced so that I can carry this thing miles if I have to, no trouble at all...

As a matter of fact, here's a tale...

I arrived at a fest the same time the rest of the band did... me in my car, the other 3 in various combinations... I get out and load my kit onto me as per the norm... They elect to wait for one of the kids with the golf carts to pack them and their gear in... I glide through the crowd with necessary excuse me's and pardon me's while they muck about loding this golf cart and then have to negotite a packed festival ground with it... By the time the even GOT to the back-stage, I was tuned, set up, warmed up and relaxing before the show... I even had time to change battery in my tuner...

Thanks, but I'll carry my gear...

;-)


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Seamus Kennedy
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 04:08 PM

Marion, the Backaxe sling system is a royal pain in the ass to put on and take off. I had one for about 6 months and got so frustrated with it that I gave it away. I use a Calton Case (as anyone who has read the threads on Fying with guitars knows), and like most HSCs they have 2 D-rings on the handle side for the use of a shoulder strap. I got 2 more D-rings from the manufacturer and installed them on the other side from the handle side. I had to make small razor slits in the padding to accomodate the rivets, but they closed up perfectly with a little contact cement. Then I bought 2 heavily padded shoulder straps (about $4 US each) which clip on and off the D-rings and away I go. Clinton, I carry my guitar on my back at festivals and other gigs to leave my 2 hands free for my beer, or CDs or guitar stands. or signing autographs or whatever. Think carefully about getting the Backaxxe, though. You'd need to be Houdini to get in and out of it.

Seamus


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Grab
Date: 27 Oct 01 - 06:40 PM

A thought from a long-time walker/backpacker. The suggestions about carrying weight on your hip/waist belt is dead on - shoulders get tired quickly. An external frame rucksack would be good, or you could probably adapt an internal frame one quite easily with 2 or 3 straps to hold the case. Actually, you may not even need the frame at all since the case will provide some structural support. As for a source, try charity shops - the "sack" part will often be ripped and tatty on old ones, but you'll be chucking that anyway when you rework it, right?

With decent straps, the weight will not be a problem. Absolute beginner and totally unfit backpackers might carry 15% of their bodyweight in a rucksack; a typical backpacker will go 20-25% bodyweight. Unless your guitar and case weigh 30lb, you're probably OK... :-)

Graham.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Marion
Date: 28 Oct 01 - 01:07 AM

Thanks for your thoughts everybody. I think I will go the Frankenstein route and make my own backaxe out of the pile of broken-zippered backpacks my mom has around the house.

Marion

PS What are you suggesting, Clinton: that I get another guitar just to carry around in my other hand?


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: 53
Date: 28 Oct 01 - 03:03 PM

another guitar might be nice. BOB


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Gypsy
Date: 28 Oct 01 - 06:18 PM

I'll go for dragging with a luggage carrier, or golf cart. Hammer dulcimer weighs in at 30+ pounds, plus the case, legs, etc. Not gonna carry too far, by the handle.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: GUEST,Russ
Date: 29 Oct 01 - 09:42 AM

Marion, I agree with Seamus. PLUS it took forever to figure out how to get the Backaxe on the first time I used it.
I no longer use my Backaxe. I now use two different cases. The HSC is used while I am actually traveling. It and the instrument go into the trunk of the car. Once I've reached my musical destination the instrument goes into a gig bag and stays there until time to go into the HSC for the trip home.


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: GUEST,Marion
Date: 19 Mar 02 - 01:00 PM

BlueJay is right - it's possible to make an ugly but functional backaxe for free. It took me an evening of sewing together parts from two old backpacks, and I'm glad I did.

Gary and Grab are right - the waist belt makes all the difference. I now feel like I could carry my guitar around all day, whereas it used to be a drag carrying my guitar from home to subway.

Phil and Seamus are right - it's a pain in the ass to get the thing on and off. But I figure that's better than the guitar being a pain in the ass for the whole trip.

Marion


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Genie
Date: 19 Mar 02 - 02:08 PM

Graham's right about gettting the materials at charity thrift shops to make your own rig. You can often end up getting a backpack for less than $1 (even free, sometimes) especially if there's some damage to it (which may not even affect the parts you want).

Also, folding airport luggage carts* can be modified to make a functional guitar cart.

Come to think of it, I have a large canvas suitcase, with wheels and a handle, which is big enough to hold the bottom 2/3 of my HSC. I don't want to sacrifice that particular suitcase, though I paid only $10 or $15 for it at a thrift shop. But sometimes you can pick one up really cheap if the zipper is broken. You don't need the zipper to work anyway, since you're going to remove the top of the suitcase, leaving, in effect, a FRAMED CANVAS SACK on wheels with a handle. You just slip the HSC in and out, without even needing bungee cords, pull out the handle, and go! You'd even have room for some sheet music, a tambourine, a couple of harmonicas, and maybe a collapsible guitar stand or mic stand.

Genie


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: GUEST,concerened
Date: 11 Jun 13 - 05:23 PM

Does any one know of a BackAxe supplier in the UK please?


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Leadfingers
Date: 11 Jun 13 - 06:18 PM

For transporting a guitar and a Resonator banjo , both on Calton cases , I took the bag off a Charity Shop shopping trolley and bungeed them on , with an extension handle between the cases .


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Subject: RE: Carrying a HSC on your back
From: Mr Happy
Date: 12 Jun 13 - 04:53 AM

If you can find a 2nd hand baby buggy, they're most versatile instrument carrying trolleys & fold up small as well


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