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Return of the Son of the Great Rack search, Part II - The Sequel

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by Chris Fitzgerald, Feb 10, 2003.


  1. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    A while back I posted a thread about rack bags for my soon to arrive iamp 800 (which is shipping even as we speak!), and some of the replies were extremely helpful. In the meantime, I've had a change of plans about the rack bag thing, since I got the world's greatest dolly which allows me to one-trip it into DB gigs....and also makes the rack bag idea kind of pointless, since I won't be using a shoulder strap anyway.

    So, what I'm looking for now is a 3 space rack - big enough for the iamp and a one space EQ unit - that has enough space in the back for a power strip, two speakon speaker cables, power cables, and a Raven Labs PMB-1, which shall remain plugged in and get stuck on top of the rack with dual lock during the gig. The iamp is between 10-11 inches deep, and I'm not sure what the standard depths of racks are. One thing is for sure - I want a solid front and back in the rack, not a solid latching front and wimpy back panel. Lightweight would also be nice.

    Given all of that, what brands should I be looking at? Money's not really a big issue, but I don't need any bells and whistles beyond what I've described since the rack will only travel from behind the passenger seat of my car to the dolly to the top of the speaker cabinet and back again (no big road trips, IOW). Anybody have any advice about great products out there that fit the bill, or horror stories about terrible ones? If so, please share!

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Jason Carota

    Jason Carota Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2002
    Lowell, MA
    Check out an SKB. Simple, solid (very secure front and rear covers,) and light. I use a four space SKB to hold an Ashdown ABM 500RC EVO, a Sabine RT 7000, two power cables, two speaker cables, and a power strip. I took a quick look at the sizing specs for the PMB-1, and it looks like you could fit it in the case also.
     
  3. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    I just popped over to Sweetwater's site and looked at the SKB's they had. The ones called "Roto-Rack" have that cheesy back cover thing going that I want to avoid, but the ones called "ATA" look pretty good - except they don't offer them in a 3-space size. I'll look some other places, too...
     
  4. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    this is kinda related, and kind of a dumb question...

    I've heard of rack cases that have front and rear rack rails, seeing as all my gear only has mounts in front, whats the point?

    The way my head came mounted in a combo amp it was in a 2 space slot, and hence supported on the bottom. What do you guys to if you have multiple amps in one case? just rest them on top of each other?

    Also these plastic cases look a little flimsy at times... or am I just being paranoid?

    Thanks. we now return to your regualrly scheduled program.

    :bassist::bag::spit::bawl:
    new smilies are cool!
     
  5. ESP-LTD

    ESP-LTD

    Sep 9, 2001
    Idaho
    I have a couple of 2 space SKB's. One is the ATA style I use to mount a QSC power amp; it has rails on the back and the amp has a kit that allows the back of the amp to be supported on rear rails (because it weighs 40#).

    I have another ATA style which is their "effects" model and it's about 2" shallower front to back and it as no rear mounts.

    Both seem pretty sturdy to me.
     
  6. The back rails work well for putting vent panels,fans and input-output jacks on the back of power amp racks for live sound.With the speaker outputs and the signal in-outs on the back panel they can just plug the speakers in,the 120v.and the XLRs from the snake and be good to go without having to dig around in the back of the rack every job.I had a small sound company years ago and this saves a ton of time setting up.The effects rack can be set up this way too and your bass rack but I think it's best for sound systems when you have a lot of things to hook up,not just your bass rig.I'm using a roto-rack now and it's allright for what I'm doing but the ATA's are much sturdier and I'll probably get one of them down the line.
     
  7. SoyBase

    SoyBase

    Jul 1, 2001
    Atlanta, Ga
    I use ones called "Road Ready"...they sell them at GC and Musicians friend for about $149 for a 4 space..I've had 3 of them and they hold up great...Good idea on the dolly..I'm trying to Ebay myself a heavy duty luggage rack for mine!


    Tommy
     
  8. Jason Carota

    Jason Carota Gold Supporting Member

    Mar 1, 2002
    Lowell, MA
    Yeah, I'm not too sure about the Roto-Rack or the "X" series. The 4 space I have is the ATA model. The SKB site has a 3 space model pictured here - the one at the very top.
     
  9. SRSiegel

    SRSiegel Guest

    Sep 17, 2001
    Ann Arbor, Michigan
    so this kit comes with most power amps then? that would allieviate my concern (im an engineering major, the whole single sided attachment doesnt float my boat)
     
  10. jondog

    jondog

    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    You can use rear rails just like front ones, if you have a deep rack and shallow gear. So, my preamp is in the top front space, and my BBE is in the top rear space. Both are shallow enough not to bump into each other in the middle, and I don't care about the BBE facing backwards because it only has 2 knobs and I rarely need to adjust them.

    Rear rails essentially double the capacity of your rack if you have shallow gear. If you have deep gear, like power amps, rear rails add extra support.
    Don't forget that double capacity can also work out to double weight.

    I bought my rack at www.rondomusic.com -- it's relatively inexpensive, deep, has rear rails, AND the handles attach w/ 8 screws, not rivets like SKB. SO, I removed 4 of the screws on 1 side and attached a permanent dolly w/ screws going into the 4 newly open holes. It's awesome. Sometimes I don't even lift my amp rack up and put it horizontal on my cabs, I just leave it vertical standing on its dolly on the floor. I wish I had a digital camera, I'm very proud of my rack layout.
     
  11. FalsehoodBass

    FalsehoodBass

    Jul 22, 2001
    Denver, CO
    hey... where can one get a hold of one of those kits that turns back rails into poweramp supports?



    I have a heavy poweramp and would like the peace of mind knowing that it's supported in the back too. I've dropped an amp in a rack (carvin) and although it didn't break, the front panel got pretty bent up.
     
  12. jondog

    jondog

    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    All I used was little L shaped brackets from the hardware store. If your power amp has no screw holes on the back of the chassis, it might be tougher. Some power amps are so deep that they can just rest on top of the back bottom case flange. Of course this means you have to put your amp in the bottom spaces, but that's what most people do anyway to provide solid wieght distribution.
     
  13. boogiebass

    boogiebass

    Aug 16, 2000
  14. seamus

    seamus

    Feb 8, 2001
    Jersey
    I think I bought a kit from QSC, I would think it's pretty universal, but cannot say for sure. The price was reasonable if I recall. It definitely holds the amp in place so it will not budge, good peace of mind.
     
  15. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    That's the one. Now if I can just find who sells them and what a good price is, I'll be in business.

    BOOGIE - that Anvil case looks mighty fine indeed; so fine, in fact, that it might be more case than I need. How heavy is that sucker?
     
  16. boogiebass

    boogiebass

    Aug 16, 2000
    It's heavier than an SKB but not horribly so. Dunno the exact weight. But one thing about the Anvil: buy it and it will last you a lifetime, most likely. American Musical Supply is fast to ship, too. I'll post pics of mine tonight, if you'd like.
     
  17. ZuluFunk

    ZuluFunk

    Apr 14, 2001
    Pennsylvania
    I didn't realise that back-hatch on my roto-rack is cheesy. I'm going to have to send it back.
     
  18. Chris Fitzgerald

    Chris Fitzgerald Student of Life Staff Member Administrator

    Oct 19, 2000
    Louisville, KY
    That'd be great if you have time. Do you think a 3 space would fit behind the passenger seat of a Honda Civic?


    ZULU - ****, I knew that was going to happen as soon as I posted that. What I should have said was that I don't care for the little round things that fasten the back panel onto the roto rack. A guitarist friend of mine has one, and he cusses the back panel every time he tries to close it up. I don't know if his is defective, but he has a hell of a time trying to get that thing to close and stay that way. Anyway, I certainly didn't mean to bust on anybody's gear. Sorry! :D
     
  19. jondog

    jondog

    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    We had an SKB roto w/ that *****n' door for our PA power amps. Latching sucked, and the whole thing kinda bent because the amps were very heavy (two AB Internationals) and the rack sometimes lived in the back of the trailer under a PA cab or two. It might be ok for lightweight fx/preamp use. They are inexpensive, but not for me.