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Transport gear on the subway?

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by wblaze, Jan 19, 2004.

  1. wblaze


    Apr 26, 2003
    Boston, MA
    Hey there,

    Here's a question for anyone who moves their portable rig up and down stairs, escalators, and on the subway.

    What is the max weight you would find reasonable to haul around? (Assuming you've got a sturdy but light hand cart.)

    I've got a GK700 (18 pounds) and will likely get either the Bergantino 112 or Bag End S15 or S12.
    That puts me at around 60 pounds. Too heavy?

    Thanks for any opinions!

  2. jondog


    Mar 14, 2002
    NYC metro area
    I used to bring my GK200MB on the subway, and it was fine. I wouldn't want to bring much more though. Make sure your bass is in a gig bag w/ a good shoulder strap. It cab be a pita getting through the turnstiles.
  3. Phat Ham

    Phat Ham

    Feb 13, 2000
    That just blows my mind that you guys can take your whole rig on the subway. I have enough trouble fitting all my stuff into my car.
  4. jokerjkny


    Jan 19, 2002
    NY / NJ / PHL
    well, that's for you to find out, no?

    not trying to be a smartbutt, but you're not gonna know if that's too heavier for you, unless you try going up some stairs, across the street, etc. but what you're planning to get seems pretty darn compact.

    for a while, i gigged around with a similar setup: Demeter/stewart rack that was 18 lbs., and with my Aguilar GS112, 39 lbs., and found it VERY easy to deal with on the subway, bus, taxi, and even once, on one of those "bike" taxi's!

    these days, i'll have my foldable cart loaded up with my Epifani ultralite 3x10, 2 space rack, and i'm good to go. weighs about 70 lbs., and hasnt been a problem for me, tho in this snowy weather, i try and cab it as much as possible. its amazing how deep and spacious the trunk space of an NYC cab can be!

    but that's only if the gig is important enough. usually, i just grab my bass, and plug into whatever's at the club.

    the only real advice i can offer you is "black plastic bags". its amazing how much crap can get on your rig, and a nice garbage bag helps keep the smutzch to a minimium. one of the best investments for any city gigger. :cool:
  5. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    That little Ampeg thing with the rolling luggage cart is a great idea IMO. So far I haven't found anything better than a WW head, 1200 watts at 7 pounds, can't beat that. You can easily find a little padded shoulder bag to carry it in. That and the bass go over one shoulder, the BagEnd S-12 in the other hand. That's about as portable as it gets for a bass player, the only thing easier than that would be the roll-around dolly.
  6. Bruce Lindfield

    Bruce Lindfield Unprofessional TalkBass Contributor Gold Supporting Member In Memoriam

    And me!! I always say that the most important thing for any bassist who wants to gig - is a car!! ;)

    I do remember a few years ago, I was coming back on the plane from a friend's wedding via Glasgow airport. We realised that the band "Hothouse Flowers" were on the plane as they had a single and album in the charts at the time.

    After getting off the plane at Heathrow airport we headed for the underground into central London - but then realised that the band had taken over a complete tube train with their gear - amps and drum kit were being loaded into an underground train!!

    So - we found out that they were playing at the Nottinghill Carnival - which is a big street festival in London - and there was no way to get through the crowds on the street, so the band had organised to take over the London Underground train to get their gear to the stage!! :D
  7. Matthias


    May 30, 2000
    Vienna, Austria
    Same here.
    I don't want to lug around more than my GK 150MB (25lbs or so) and my bass. BTW I use a suitcase with handle and casters for the amp.

    Our guitarist manages to carry around a Fender Twin (quite heavy!) or a 50W tube head w/ 112 cab on a cart.

    So: what you plan do do can be done, but I prefer to go by car...

  8. funkcicle


    Jan 9, 2004
    Asheville, NC
    this doesn't answer your question, but it's a scary subway story I thought was fit to share.

    My buddy's bassist, Carl, had an audition at Trinity College of Music in London recently.. when getting onto the subway, the door closed between him and his bass, leaving the handle in his hand, and the bass in it's gigbag on the outside of the train. There was nothing he could do, and he was powerless as the train took motion and proceeded to exit the station.

    The tunnel exiting the station is about the width of the train, allowing only a few inches(if that) on the ramp-side. Upon reaching the tunner (keep in mind this is all in a few seconds, less than 10, probably), the bass collides with the wall and the gigbag rips from it's strap, still in Carl's hand.

    Carl arrives at his audition with nothing but the strap for his gigbag(CAN YOU IMAGINE!!). He plays his audition on a crappy fretted bass(he's a fretless player) with old strings and a dire need for adjustment, and goes back to his hotel.

    so, happy ending?

    the next day he went back to the subway station and related his story to somebody employed there.. he was directed to an office. The man in the office pulled from behind a filing cabinet a very badly tattered gigbag... Carl takes it and pulls out his bass... not only was there not a scratch on the instrument, but it was still in tune! (a few potential advertising endorsements, there!) He was also accepted at the college.

    ...so next time you ride the tube, BE CAREFUL! I know I'll always be walking in sideways, with my bass directly in front of me!
  9. NeedMoreBass

    NeedMoreBass unregistered

    Feb 14, 2003
    I highly suggest the Berg HT112 and a Acoustic Image Clarus. The tone is AWESOME and both are easy to handle. Total weight 44lbs.
  10. GooseYArd

    GooseYArd Guest

    May 15, 2003
    Around thanksgiving and christmas I see dozens of women on Boston's blue line wrangling suitcases the size of svt cabinets out to the airport, and they don't even get paid for that. So I think it's simply a function of your level of determination man :)
  11. nonsqtr

    nonsqtr The emperor has no clothes!

    Aug 29, 2003
    Burbank CA USA
    Yeah, the determination factor is important. Once when I was a kid I hauled a pair of 15" SRO's in heavy cabs four miles down Hollywood Blvd. so I could get them home on the bus. It was pretty funny, playing leapfrog with myself and watching the tourists watching me. :)

    But now I'm constrained by health issues, herniated a disk a while back and can't haul those SVT cabs no matter how determined I am. It sucks really, for a while it looked like I was gonna have to give up gigging 'cause every time we played out the injury would get aggravated and I'd end up missing a couple days of work. Can't afford that (yet).

    My drummer buddy uses a little four wheel dolly. He can fit his entire kit on the thing. He's totally portable, where most people would make several trips to the car to haul in all the cases, he just stacks his on the dolly and rolls the whole thing in all at once.

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