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Old 03-19-2015, 01:50 PM
CofC07 CofC07 is offline
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Default Calton Cases V. Hoffee Cases

This is my first post. As the proud new owner of a Martin Custom D-42, who travels frequently, I know I want/need an excellent travel case. I have narrowed the search down to Calton (Austin, TX) and Hoffee cases.

The Hoffee seems amazingly protective, insulated (at additional cost), and for my purposes, the PVC seals seem basically waterproof. Living in new England, this can aid in maintaining proper humidity in the case. The con with the Hoffee is just the general size/look. It’s a HUGE case.

The Calton cases, now based in Austin, aver visually stunning, but I was wondering if any members had additional information on their seals, interior foam or other details they’d be willing to share to help me make a decision.
I would be stoked to hear opinions on Hoffee or the new Calton cases!
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Old 03-19-2015, 02:17 PM
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I believe Hoffee cases are great, and the quality has improved over the last couple of years. However, I'm not sure I would call the PVC seals waterproof in the sense that they will keep out moisture and control relative humidity. I believe they are water resistant (as in, taking them in the rain won't hurt things), but I don't think you'll be able to go SCUBA diving with your guitar.

They are very big and relatively heavy, though they are making a slimmer version now that is lighter. For most applications, the heavy padding is probably overkill.

I have heard nothing but great things about the recent Caltons, but I believe they are just as heavy, if not heavier.
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Old 03-19-2015, 02:38 PM
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...and the winner is:

Karura.

IMO.
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Old 03-19-2015, 04:07 PM
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I've only made a couple of airline trips with this one, but it has worked well so far. Yes, it is heavy and bulky (always comes out at the oversize baggage door) but the wheels work well for rolling around the airport. It's also hard to beat the price. I like the TSA approved locks, so I can at least have the *illusion* that my case is secure from casual prying - unlike one past trip where I deliberately de-tuned the guitar before checking the case and it came out the other end tuned back to pitch. I use a decently padded gig bag as my suitcase for clothes, so I have something more portable at the destination. Mine is tan, in case it sits on a hot & sunny tarmac somewhere before being loaded.

http://www.musiciansfriend.com/acces...-case-w-wheels
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Old 03-19-2015, 04:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CofC07 View Post
This is my first post. As the proud new owner of a Martin Custom D-42, who travels frequently, I know I want/need an excellent travel case. I have narrowed the search down to Calton (Austin, TX) and Hoffee cases.
Hi CC07…
I'm partial to my Caltons, and glad the company has moved and is undergoing a rebuild.

Not only are my Calton cases a great fit, and ultimate protection, but a bigger pick drawer and extra space/room under the headstock to carry straps, lifts etc.

I'm not sold on watertight construction. I fear that humidity levels bolstered by active humidification in a case may lead to 'issues' with finish or the guitar's structure. I prefer that my cases exchange air with the room they are in.

A watertight sealed case certainly seems like an environment ripe for growth of unwanted organisms…

My assumption with guitar cases (even with my Caltons) is they will eventually reach the same level of humidity as the room that I humidify and store them in, so I only use case humidification when they travel outside the house for more than a day. I'm not sure that would be so if the case is tightly sealed.

I've looked at and handled some of the Hoffee composite cases, and while lighter than my Caltons, I'd have to carry an extra bag or other container to transport the guitar and my essentials which I easily put in the pick drawer of the Calton.



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Old 03-19-2015, 06:17 PM
kydave kydave is offline
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Interesting! I've never seen a Hoffee, but I thought the original appeal was that they were lightweight and slimmer than a Calton.

Does anyone have a photo of a Hoffee and Calton side by side?

I like my Calton a lot, but the bugger is heavy!

Here it is beside a standard Martin Vintage style case...

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Old 03-19-2015, 06:41 PM
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Can't help you with the seal on Carlton though it does look like PVC. Gary Price uses a EPDM rubber seal though and that makes a excellent seal if that's what you are after.
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Old 03-19-2015, 07:09 PM
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Not sure how many Calton cases I've owned over the years but I currently have 6. They are a mix of UK and (Al Williams) Canadian. All of them have been totally reliable and I've not had to replace anything. Heavy, yes but very solid and reassuring.
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Old 03-19-2015, 07:40 PM
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Sometimes it seems on this forum that there are only two fibreglass/CF casses on the market. I have noticed Larry plugging Karura cases which was good to see and in my last post I plugged Gary Price. Another who may be a consideration are Presto Cases in Australia. They make a descent fibreglass case custom padded to your instrument and if you have a look at their prices, even with freight cost to USA and considered the US$ to AU$ exchange rate at the moment they might be worth a look too.
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Old 03-19-2015, 07:54 PM
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Cool thread. In the not-too-distant future I will be buying an expensive mandolin. Do both of these companies made good mando cases also?

CL
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Old 03-19-2015, 08:09 PM
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I can't speak to the new Calton cases, but I'm very happy with an OM case I bought on the forums for my OM-42. Calton is absolutely bomber and although it's a bit heavier, it provides exceptional protection when traveling or otherwise. Good luck with your search, and keep an eye on the For Sale as they do come up from time to time.
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Old 03-20-2015, 07:07 AM
CofC07 CofC07 is offline
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Thanks Everyone! Great info.
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Old 03-20-2015, 09:47 AM
Silly Moustache Silly Moustache is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kydave View Post
Interesting! I've never seen a Hoffee, but I thought the original appeal was that they were lightweight and slimmer than a Calton.

Does anyone have a photo of a Hoffee and Calton side by side?

I like my Calton a lot, but the bugger is heavy!

Here it is beside a standard Martin Vintage style case...

Nice shoes Dave ...was there a mouse ?
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Old 03-20-2015, 10:15 AM
Guitar1083 Guitar1083 is offline
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I have the Karura Case for my classical, how often are you going to travel with your guitar?

are carbon fiber cases overkill?

http://www.karuracase.com/index.php?...e88beb463b4af6
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Old 03-22-2015, 02:37 PM
CofC07 CofC07 is offline
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So, I just pulled the trigger on a Calton Case. Did a lot of research and spoke to Jeff Hoffee (who was wonderfully accommodating). I also spoke with Keith Calton and Jon Green (of Calton-Austin) and all things considered, I was secure with the protection the Calton offered.

The Hoffee is an amazing case, and a lot of options (thinsulate insulation) are desirable options, but the overall size and aesthetics won out for me with the Calton.

Thanks, All.
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