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    A decent alternative to Pelican cases
    #1
    Member modernPrimitive's Avatar
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    Hi,

    I have such a huge collection of gear now that I seriously need to look at some decent cases for transport. I've looked at some old threads for cheap alternatives to Pelican cases but they always seem exactly that - cheap! I somehow managed to find this Manufacturer in China and their cases seem to be similar to the Pelicans with valves etc:

    http://www.sino-enclosure.com/En_Pro...ipment%20Cases

    They emailed me a price list and the prices seem too good to be true - even for "sample" orders. (It seems they have a pricing scheme for bulk orders and are probably set more towards supplying to distributors - but it still sees one can buy a "sample" or single order). With all the scams on the internet these days I was wondering if anyone had ordered these before or knew anything about the quality. It seems they could be a real alternative to the Pelicans but of course I would need to factor shipping into the price. I think I'm looking at about 1/10th of the price of a Pelican - at least in South Africa where I live.

    Though I've searched Google for scams related to the company and found none I'm still a little nervous ordering from China so if anyone has any experience with these please let me know!

    Thanks!
    Director, film-maker, all-round production and post guy: http://93films.blogspot.com
    Free Creative Commons HD Stock Video Footage: http://93films.blogspot.com/p/free-stock-footage.html


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    #2
    Member modernPrimitive's Avatar
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    Well I took the plunge and ordered two large equipment cases from these chaps. At first appearance they seem to be very good and I'm very satisfied with the quality - extremely tough. They also seem to be water-tight as when I had to use the vacuum release valve to get them open probably due to pressure changes between China and South Africa. The cost of these is roughly about 1/5 of the equivalent Pelican cases (In South Africa) excluding import duty, taxes and shipping. Shipping by courier more than doubles the price (which is still around 1/2 the price of a Pelican). Of course if there are other means of reliable shipping at lower costs then these are really a viable alternative but you will have to check regarding import taxes etc.

    If anyone's interested I can post some pics and perhaps do a write up and review.
    Director, film-maker, all-round production and post guy: http://93films.blogspot.com
    Free Creative Commons HD Stock Video Footage: http://93films.blogspot.com/p/free-stock-footage.html


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    I've bought some China products. But one thing that concerns me is that they have no qualms poisoning their customers. Lead paint; melamine in their milk, who knows what else. We all see the news articles about the latest contamination or poisoning.

    I made an inquiry to them after seeing your post. The stuff does look ok. If you get a chance, drop by a hospital or fire department and see if they have a geiger counter. Let us know if it's radioactive. Yes, I'm kind of joking, but then again, I'm not. Who knows what's in that plastic.


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    Senior Member Allan Black's Avatar
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    .. or you could shave off a small piece from an inside out of the way spot and get it analysed.

    Many years ago some imported Chinese paint here was impounded because of the lead content.

    Cheers.
    35yrs with our own a/v production company and studios.


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    yes, interested in seeing some pictures since their images are pretty low rez and hard to compaire its size to real world obiects.


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    Member modernPrimitive's Avatar
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    Some good suggestions! I'll post a few pics a little later...
    Director, film-maker, all-round production and post guy: http://93films.blogspot.com
    Free Creative Commons HD Stock Video Footage: http://93films.blogspot.com/p/free-stock-footage.html


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    #7
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    problem with ultra low cost plastic from china is it looks like plastic, but it react more like sh*t.
    i have power cable and other stuff like this from china (ebay 1$ , shipment free)... i still cannot understand how they can send you anything by airmail for free !) .
    If you bend them a little bit they just crack open.
    I really do not understand these guys who can build plants to produce totally useless goods.
    Explanation would be, they produce tons of stuff and a good part of them never reach the targeted quality level. so instead putting them
    on the waste basket, they just try to sell it a way of another.
    Usually when purchasing something on ebay that is very low cost (1/10 of regular price) , i purchase at 3, so i am sure at least one
    is working or there are spare parts to fix it.

    Would be interesting to let one of these case in full sun or in car trunk for one hour to see what happens.
    Last edited by nosys70; 06-03-2012 at 06:23 AM.


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    Senior Member paulears's Avatar
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    I've been buying all sorts of items from China for my own use, and often selling what I don't need if there is a higher minimum order quantity than I want.

    I have rarely had a rubbish product. I've had so many things now I can spot a few trends. Metal, in general is often thinner and softer than we would use normally. So barn door flaps, lightweight housings and sometimes things like screw threads can be bendable. Often, there will be light corrosion that gets sprayed over. If the metal is aluminium, then there's occasionally oxidation under the paint giving it a rough texture. Most items mains powered need checking - I PAT test everything, I'd guess 1 in maybe 20 fails. In most cases, it is simply loose screws, that just need a tweak.

    I have had no problems at all with plastic parts. All the mics I buy with cases are decent enough plastic and the foam quality is ok.

    What I seem to have discovered is that in general, it's clear that the people you buy from may not be the manufacturer, they are assemblers. The manufacturer can often be a very large company who in the case of microphones that I import, make the mic elements, pre-amp pcbs and other electronics. So when you buy a mic that appears unique in design, they will have the metal tube work produced for them, and the build existing pcbs and elements into them. Some of the big firms make the OEM for big UK and US firms - so loudspeakers and sound mixers are coming off the production line with real brand names on them. I suspect that any product that fails quality control is not scrapped, it's simply either rebranded as an 'own make' or sometimes sold on to less 'moral' Chinese firms who sell them semi-covertly. I've some loudspeakers that are identical. One pair says EV on the front, and the other has my trading name on it. Pulling both apart reveals internal components that are absolutely identical. Same cables, connectors, crimps, soldering technique and even the exact type of shake proof washers. I'd find it impossible to tell them apart. I have others that physically are identical apart from the front grill - simply a different design, but using identical mounting holes. I suspect here that these are B grade, rejected cabinets, because all have tiny blemishes in the paintwork. Instead of scrapping, they have been given a new grill and sold off very cheap.

    Freight wise - anything air carried is very expensive. Sea freight can be much cheaper but often you have to collect the goods from the port yourself, and wait maybe three months from start to finish, and of course, pay up front!

    I've never been let down - but there are unexpected issues. Phone calls or emails saying "is it ok we make microphone grills silver not gold - we cannot make paint stick!" Honestly - the picture shows gold grills, but they can't actually make them that colour. I had a batch of lighting that were all put together wrong - the workers obviously had no idea that a screw should have been in a groove - allowing rotation, rather than under it - which locked it. These are the silly things. Like guitars with the strings wound on backwards - obviously the person who assembled them had no idea.

    I've never had anything that was not saleable. I had one failed transaction where with hindsight, I should have realised the deal was too good, and it never came! I put that down to my stupidity - and would have been the same if bought here.


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    Member modernPrimitive's Avatar
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    Hi,

    Apologies for the delay! I've never really examined a Pelican case very closely since I'm usually on a job and have hired gear that comes in a Pelican and there's never any time. Now that I have my own gear and barely rent any gear I can't do a comparison! I do suspect however that the Pelican's are probably a little better on the quality side but having said that I'm pretty happy with these "Everest" (Sino-moulding) cases (Or whatever their brand name is). I also found out that the plastic is "ABS" - some kind of composite material. I'm not going to leave these out to bake in the sun or submerge them a few meters under water to do any tests. As a solid protective case they seem to do the job.

    Here are the promised pics - a little blurry due to low light and besides who needs a shutter faster than 1/24 anyway?

    This is the EPC020-1 model (665mmx500mmx210mm). Cost price is $124 but I got a discount down to $116 for 2 of them:

    IMG_3826.jpg
    IMG_3824.jpg
    IMG_3820.jpg
    IMG_3819.jpg
    IMG_3818.jpg
    IMG_3817.jpg
    Director, film-maker, all-round production and post guy: http://93films.blogspot.com
    Free Creative Commons HD Stock Video Footage: http://93films.blogspot.com/p/free-stock-footage.html


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    #10
    Member modernPrimitive's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info paulears.

    I generally prefer to buy quality as I've really burnt my fingers before on things like low budget Televisions, 5.1 surround systems etc (all of which had to be replaced), but in this industry one has to find ways to save costs and I would rather compromise on something like a case than on other gear. I also have a battery powered shotgun mic from China (called AZT) which is actually pretty good. Not a Neumann or Sennheiser but it also does the job ok. It fits in below the smallHD and the BeachTek (Just to give an idea of size). The headphones are also pretty large.
    Director, film-maker, all-round production and post guy: http://93films.blogspot.com
    Free Creative Commons HD Stock Video Footage: http://93films.blogspot.com/p/free-stock-footage.html


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