Getting the right balance of protection and portability in a trumpet case or gig bag is always a challenge. And add to that being able to actually fit in everything that you need and then carry it without breaking your back… Gig bigs or soft cases have long been a popular alternative to hard cases to cut down on weight, but there is often a huge compromise to be made in it’s level of protection for your valuable instruments.
I was keen to see a new range on the market from Fultone Brass – the Ft Series. The range comprises a double, a triple and a quad, all with shoulder and backpack straps, soft bags but with wooden boards on all sides and faces to give extra rigidity. All cases use seat belt straps double stitched around all of the main pressure points and also the strap loops for extra strength as well as double leather handles. They all come with a quad mouthpiece pouch and top zipped pockets for music and bit’n’bobs.
Ft DOUBLE Trumpet Case: Weighing in at just 2.8kg and at 56x22x21cm this is about as compact as a double case can be. You can comfortably fit 2x B-flat trumpets or 1 trumpet and all of your mutes. When you hit the case, there is the reassuring knock of wood, yet there is still the flexibility and malleability to the case that allows it to be carried ergonomically and in comfort. Everything about this case reassuringly screams “sturdy”, with double stitched handles and full carabiner clips on the backpack straps. The ample padding inside also gives good impact protection to your instruments.
Ft TRIPLE Trumpet Case: The triple gig bag has long been a staple of every trumpet player’s closet. The flexibility that they offer, allowing you to fit in most of the gear that you are likely to need for most of your gigs, makes them a popular one for manufacturers to develop. An issue that I have had over the years with numerous different bags is that they will often look and feel very protective, with excellent padding, but this level of protection suddenly plummets as soon as you add in the weight of 3 instruments, your sheet music, diary, tablet etc. I am very pleased to say that this is not the case with the Ft TRIPLE. The boarded innards, robust stitching and seat belt reinforcement mean that when you add in the weight of all of your gear, it does not lose it’s shape or protective properties.
At 3.75kg and at 56x31x21cm I can certainly recommend this case as being an excellent compromise between the protective qualities of a hard case, and the lightweight portability of a gig bag.
Ft QUAD Trumpet Case: Considering that this case is designed to fit up to 4x B-flat trumpets, it is surprisingly light and compact. 4.5kg and 56x37x21cm, it is still within the carry-on dimensions for most commercial airlines. ‘Normal’ humans are not built to be able to carry most quad trumpet cases when they are fully loaded, and this is where the extremely robust back-pack straps with carabiner clips really come into their own! As with the triple case, the outer does not lose it’s shape or protective qualities when it is loaded with instruments, and the padded dividers between the compartments are much thicker than I have seen in competitors’ models.
I would never generally carry a quad case out of choice, but if you have to use one, this is by a long way the best that I have seen on the market.
For further information on these cases, please visit Fultone Brass