Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups
Asher Guitars WD Music Products Amplified Parts Mod Kits DIY Nordstarnd Pickups

Gear bags

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by William Pugh, Jan 12, 2019 at 8:16 PM.

  1. William Pugh

    William Pugh TDPRI Member

    Mar 25, 2016
    Hey there guys,

    I'm not sure where to put this and this seems to be the "off subject" forum, so I should be safe.

    I'm just wondering what you all use as a gear bag when you're out of the house. I tend towards overkill: I don't like to be unprepared for any event so I bring along a small duffle bag (12x12x18ish) with my 1/4" cables, XLR cables, SM58, pliers, scissors, pens + pencils, extra strings, extra picks, direct boxes, etc. But it's always, dispite all my efforts, a bit of a mess and inconvenient for small items.

    I must not be the only person who has this problem so I'm wondering, what do you guys use? Anybody got a great idea for this?
  2. RodeoTex

    RodeoTex Poster Extraordinaire

    Sep 14, 2005
    Nueces Strip
    Usually just a Ridgid or DeWalt tool bag.
    Seems that no matter how much crap I stuff in there I never have what I need.
    eclecticsynergy likes this.
  3. Chunkocaster

    Chunkocaster Friend of Leo's

    Aug 10, 2018
    In space with Ziggy
    I use a plastic and stainless steel toolbox that has a locking lid with several compartments built in for capo, strings, picks, clip on tuners, spare parts, tools etc. Then it has a tray when opened for more stuff like a couple pedals, spare jack cup etc. Beneath that is open for cables, straps, mini pedalboard etc.

    It holds more than I need but is still light enough to not be a problem. It also keeps all that stuff in one place so it doesn't end up spread all over the house when i'm home.

    It also has Trojan written on it which could get some brownie points with the ladies or possibly lead to some disappointment. :(

    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 8:42 PM
    birddog01 likes this.
  4. schmee

    schmee Friend of Leo's

    Jun 2, 2003
    Cord bags are a mess for sure. I bought a new one recently, the cheap and strong one I found is a hot delivery food bag! It's insulated, so that's "padding", it was half price of "music" bags. Hard cases for cords give me problems, the soft seem to work better for me to rummage aaround in.

    Also: I bought a small microphone case several years ago. It was like $59 and has foam filler for 6 mic's. The rest of it I made into holders to keep slides, a capo, an cheap extra strap, cough drops for the throat, 9v batteries, harmonicas and a couple short mic cords for patching. It's been the most useful thing in a long time and is only about 12 x 12 x 12"
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 8:50 PM
    birddog01 likes this.
  5. William Pugh

    William Pugh TDPRI Member

    Mar 25, 2016
    I have one of those. But I have tools in it... ;-)

    Actually, that's a pretty good idea for a smaller bag than I have when I don't need the whole kit.
  6. William Pugh

    William Pugh TDPRI Member

    Mar 25, 2016
    I like this idea too. I'll have to check around and see what I can find with the right-sized compartments.
    Chunkocaster likes this.
  7. aerhed

    aerhed Tele-Afflicted

    Dec 24, 2016
    Boulder, WY
    The handle profile on those DeWalt bags doesn't suit me. I prefer the vintage fold on my Craftsman bags.
    William Pugh likes this.
  8. William Pugh

    William Pugh TDPRI Member

    Mar 25, 2016
    Another two good ideas. I especially like the microphone case idea. I often take way more cables than I need, so if I limit myself there, I could probably get the rest into a mic case. Maybe overkill since none of it is breakable, but still...
  9. nosuch

    nosuch Friend of Leo's

    Apr 4, 2008
    I'm simple: Guitar, cables, spare strings and picks are all in the gigbag. A Mic + Cable, fly rig and DI-box also fit if necessary.
  10. 1955

    1955 Poster Extraordinaire

    Apr 10, 2010
    I keep a tool kit and extra strings, small notepad, pen, tuner batteries, capo strap, flashlight, etc. in every guitar gig bag.

    I do mostly solo shows, but the band rig is still pretty similar.

    My main gig equipment bag is big, almost military style, and in it the ac cords for powered speakers with one backup ac cable, lighting ac cords, two lead guitar cables, xlrs for mains and vocals and a spare for backup, a spare mic, one long extension cord with a power strip electric-taped to it, small powered speakers, set list, roll of duct tape, a shorter extension cord, phone charger taped to a smaller power strip, an extra small 3 outlet power strip, and a smaller zip-bag where I keep a wiring ground fault tester, 1/8" headphone cord, electrical tape, anything else that is hard to fish out in a hurry.

    Then I have my first "backup" bag, stuff that isn't always necessary for my smaller gigs, which has some stuff like xlr-1/4" for mains/subwoofers, a 50 ft. xlr to help with sound checks or wider speaker spreads in larger or awkward venues, one or two small xlrs for extensions or backup, one 50 ft. extension cord, extra roll of tape, extra ac cords for running more mains.

    Soft bags are easier to stuff in a vehicle for me and have shoulder straps so easier to carry and keep a hand free.

    I have a long hockey style bag with small wheels at one end and a handle at the other that has my mic stand, lights, mat, speaker stands, and a black sheet.

    Then I have my amp and I usually bring 3 guitars. A double soft gig bag with my two backups, and a single soft gig bag with my main one.

    That's what I usuallly carry in to a gig, on a platform type truck. I stack the amp, backup bag and the big main gig bag first, then the long hockey bag on top of that, then put my double guitar gig bag on top of that. Then I carry my main guitar on my shoulder.

    That's a one trip that gives me a hand free for doors and elevators with usually everything I need from small to larger indoor gigs.

    All my equipment bags I get at thrift stores and I get black, rugged ones. I mark them with silver sharpies. If they are black and nondescript, they can sit better in a vehicle without worrying about theft.

    I carry in my vehicle black sheets that I can throw over anything if I have to leave it in the vehicle for a while unattended.

    Even though all the stuff I described above sounds like an awful lot, I bring it because over the years I've determined through a lot of shows that it is better to bring it.

    Still, though, what I leave in the vehicle unless determined after load-in are two other backup bags that have in them everything I could possibly ever need on a gig in the middle of nowhere. Adapters, oddball cords and hardware, even a CD player. Plus a bag of nothing but 50 and 100 ft extension cords.

    I keep all that in there because I will invariably need something in there.

    Its amazing what will fail in summer heat, at the beach, in the winter, in the mud outdoors, etc.

    If I'm heading out for an outdoor gig or far away from home for multiple shows I'll bring an acoustic, couple more speakers, maybe more lights, an amp stand, maybe another guitar, depending on what I have to do.

    These days though I keep it pretty simple. I've done enough to know what works for me. I did four gigs in the last five days and nothing broke, thankfully.

    Some people laugh at all I have, but they aren't the one who bears the responsibility for the show to go right.

    One other thing that helps is that I color code most of my cables with different color electrical tape, and my spare Mics I keep in small zip bags with pillow stuffing/cotton. The guitar cables I use are livewire I think and they are already blue on the stress relief.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 10:05 PM
    haggardfan1 likes this.
  11. Bergy

    Bergy TDPRI Member

    Dec 12, 2018
    The cables are always a problem if you don’t roll them well, or tie them up. Thr over-underhand method of rolling cables seems to be what they teach formally. I tend to pack my cables in layers, like sedimentary rock. Maybe mic cables on bottom and instrument cables on top? I try to keep all the cable ties oriented in the same direction, so I can flip through them like a file cabinet. I like to keep patch cables in a side pocket or some other containment, if there is only 1 compartment, I throw them in the very bottom of the bag. It is easy to stuff your hand down to the bottom and fish one up quickly and it is less likely to get mangled in with the other cables. Regardless of what structure you decided to impose, ya gotta wrangle all those cables effectively, somehow.

    I’ve always piled my tools into a separate “tech bag” that acts as an emergency kit. Any sort of quick reaction needs go there, including some backup batteries. I used to use a 1 large sized and 1 normal sized crown royal bag for those tools. The smaller one was a string break kit, specifically. The larger one held other tools I thought I might need.

    I don’t like hard cases because I like to be able to strap things on my back and walk into a gig with as few trips to the car as possible. It is a rare day when someone else is packing up my gear, though. My gear goes from my hands to my vehicle. I might think otherwise about soft shells and backpacks if that wasn’t the case.
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 10:34 PM
  12. uriah1

    uriah1 Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

    Feb 12, 2011
    Garage sale suitcases with rollers
    tubejockey and haggardfan1 like this.
  13. TokyoPortrait

    TokyoPortrait Tele-Meister

    Dec 10, 2017
    Tokyo, Japan
    I'm about to buy a courier bag, by Ortleib (sp?).

    I'm an edge dweller in a sense, and basically, when I'm heading more in to Tokyo I commute on trains, so it seems a rugged & practical solution.

    It'll serve several purposes too.
  14. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

    Feb 16, 2014
    Sacramento, California
    I used two different duffel bags over the past 35 years, but man it's always a nightmare trying to find anything. End up with a mass of cables, mics, and AC adapters on the floor. I'm thinking I need to get something that allows me to get more organized in the near future.
  15. Dennyf

    Dennyf Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 9, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    I have acquired a couple of these (Samsonite). One is for backup. They’re durable, holds my pedalboard, cables, mics and folding guitar stand. After I’ve set up, lying on it’s side it raises my amp off the stage and angles it upward slightly. Plus they have mojo.

  16. William Pugh

    William Pugh TDPRI Member

    Mar 25, 2016
    That thing is sweet!!

    Side question: have you attached the pedal board in there somehow? I have trouble with it moving around, changing settings pressing the knobs down into the the pedals do hard they don't turn well... Got a solution?
  17. Milspec

    Milspec Friend of Leo's

    Feb 15, 2016
    Military pilots helmet bag for me. Been using those for about 20 years now for about everything.
  18. eclecticsynergy

    eclecticsynergy Tele-Holic

    Nov 16, 2014
    Albany NY
    A good friend of mine carried his cables & stuff around in a bowling bag for many years. Always thought that was pretty cool.

    My little bag used to be a vintage Austrian gas mask bag. It had a shoulder strap, two largish outside pockets and a divider inside that split the interior into smaller & larger zones. I had two of those; gave one to my son and lost the other somewhere over the years. Nowadays I have a laptop bag for grab & go.

    Gig rig still includes the same keyboard roadcase I've used for pedalboards/stands/cables and string-&-tool box since the 80s.
  19. Dennyf

    Dennyf Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 9, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
  20. Dennyf

    Dennyf Tele-Afflicted

    Feb 9, 2011
    Charlotte, NC
    Rubber O-rings around the pot shafts under the knobs. Creates enough resistance so that they don't turn by themselves.
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