SKB vs Hardcase Drum Cases

mike90

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Looking to upgrade from soft cases/bags to hard cases for my kit for more protection while transporting. I already use SKB for my cymbals and Roland SPD-SX, so I know their quality. I guess I'm curious to know how they compare to Hardcase brand. I see Hardcase are a little easier on the wallet and from what I read seem to be just as good. I also like they are capable of "nesting", meaning you can put the smaller ones into the bigger ones while they're empty for less stroage space during a gig. Wanted to see what everyone's experience was with Hardcase vs SKB. Thanks in advance!
 

bpaluzzi

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Unless you have the shallowest size drums that the Hardcase fits, their drum cases are not fit for purpose.

The "variable" height that they try to pitch as a positive (in actuality, it's a massive cost-saving measure from their side) negates any advantages that a case has -- there is no structural integrity to the case itself, the drum shell is bearing all of the force. That means if you stack or drop the cases, the drum shell takes the damage, not the case.

The hardware + cymbal cases from Hardcase are fine, though.
 

mike90

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Unless you have the shallowest size drums that the Hardcase fits, their drum cases are not fit for purpose.

The "variable" height that they try to pitch as a positive (in actuality, it's a massive cost-saving measure from their side) negates any advantages that a case has -- there is no structural integrity to the case itself, the drum shell is bearing all of the force. That means if you stack or drop the cases, the drum shell takes the damage, not the case.

The hardware + cymbal cases from Hardcase are fine, though.
Wow good info. Thanks so much. Do you know if skb cases can nest inside each other?
 

Piggpenn

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I have a full set of SKB hard cases. 22" BD, 16" and 14" FT, 12", 10" and 8" MT and 14" snare cases. They are all 20 years old and still look like new.

The snap buckles and all strapping is still pristine and the padding is still attached to the inside of each case.

Mine will fully nest inside themselves, except the cymbal vault and snare case. All BD to small MT case nest. It's a great system.

When not in use they nest. When fully in use they stack nicely with locking tracks in the lids of all cases. They are 100% waterproof as long and they aren't sitting on their sides. lol.

Can't say enough good about them.
 

mike90

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I have a full set of SKB hard cases. 22" BD, 16" and 14" FT, 12", 10" and 8" MT and 14" snare cases. They are all 20 years old and still look like new.

The snap buckles and all strapping is still pristine and the padding is still attached to the inside of each case.

Mine will fully nest inside themselves, except the cymbal vault and snare case. All BD to small MT case nest. It's a great system.

When not in use they nest. When fully in use they stack nicely with locking tracks in the lids of all cases. They are 100% waterproof as long and they aren't sitting on their sides. lol.

Can't say enough good about them.
Is it true the rivets on the bottom can let water in?
 

Piggpenn

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Is it true the rivets on the bottom can let water in?
I can neither confirm nor deny since it's never happened to me. I suppose with any "opening" the potential is there.

My previous home basement used to seep water in during heavy rains until I figured out the down spouts were too close to the house. The cases sat in water but it never got high enough to compromise the rivets since they are raised up in the bottom channel. Even the straps didn't show any water staining.
 

notINtheband

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Decided years ago that quality, padded/fleece-lined bags, as long as I was my own roadie, was a better option because of the things previously mentioned in the thread about many cases.
The few hard cases I own either offer a poor fit, take up even more room, or add even more weight and bulk to my schlepping from gig to gig.
Since myself and maybe a stray band mate are the only ones touching the gear the bags just make it much easier and offer enough basic protection for the SUV rides.
If I am ever back in a situation where my drums get moved for me or via semi or pull behind trailer, I would go to the hard cases and work out the fit/padding/sizing concerns.
 

tnsquint

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For that style of case I think it’s tough to beat SKB. The interior fabric-lined padding, the roto-molding and stacking “locks” are all worth the price of admission. Far superior to any fiber case. I have dozens of them. Don’t use them much but they are great when I need them.
 

Formula428

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The SKB cases are expensive but worth the price. I have enough cases for my 6pc shell pack (8 / 10 / 12 / 14 / 16 / 22) and also have enough for my snare drums (10 / 12 / 13 / 14).

They are the only way I'd ever transport my Sonor Delite drums.
 

Ptrick

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I much prefer Humes & Berg Enduro Pro for hard cases. I have a full set, and a few SKB, and the enduro pro are sturdier and have lasted 20+ years of 50-100 gigs a year. SKB cases flex much more than the Enduro Pro’s to me.

That said, they probably are more expensive…but worth it.
 

hsosdrum

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I move my own stuff, so a set of Ahead bags (they call them cases) works just fine for me (although I have an SKB hard case for my Black Beauty because it's so heavy). But if I were to ever have others hauling, loading/unloading and moving my gear I'd put it all in ATA-rated wheeled flight cases. In fact, I'd have the flight cases made big enough so the drums inside of their Ahead bags would fit in the flight cases.

Of course, nobody's taking this fat 69-year old cranky-pants drummer on tour with them, so I ain't gonna worry about flight cases...
 

vintagedrummersweden

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Hardcase works fine for me, use them when we transport our own backline. Never had a problem with them.
I have a conga case that I made my own dividers for and now use as a 2 snares and 1 tom-multi case.
 

017

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SKB.

The carpet-like material they changed to a few years ago that now lines the sides is a massive improvement, as it's nowhere near as prone to being damaged (they should have changed the foam in the base and lid, too). You'll hear a lot of complaints about this change because the perception is the foam provided better protection, but the foam is/was so thin that it doesn't/didn't provide any meaningful protection at all.

Is it true the rivets on the bottom can let water in?
Not sure about this, but any hole made in the case will be a potential point of water ingress.

Also, be aware the SKB badge covers a hole in the lid (due to their manufacturing process). If the badge ever comes unstuck (which has happened on a few of my cases have), it will allow water in.
 

Piggpenn

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I took some pics of mine last night since they are not in use and nestled.

Here they are all ready for anything...
20210913_225725.jpg



Here's how they look nested.

20210913_225855.jpg


They still look very good for being 20 years old and seen many gigs in their time. All straps and clips still work perfectly.
 

Piggpenn

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I forgot to mention, their hardware case is even more awesome. Wheels and a handle make this a must have.


20210913_225612.jpg
 


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