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New Violin Case, Any Thoughts?


violinist82
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I'm looking at several string companies for a new violin case. I'm looking to spend up to $300-$400. I want a very proffesional and protective case that will keep my violin safe at least through my four years of college. I've come across a brand, Bobelock, that seems rather inexpensive, but I don't know much about it. If you know about Bobelock, have any ideas of a good place to purchase my case, or know a good brand, please respond! Thank you

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How about Musafia?

I have a Bobelock case which I bought several months ago. At the time, the shop recommended me that brand and the Musafia brand, which is more expensive that the Bobelock. Apart from those two brands, I also looked at other similar-looking, less expensive cases, but they told me that the Bobelock had a better quality than the other ones.

They also told me that the Musafia was better than the Bobelock, but at that time I wasn't planning to spend that much money for a case.

Hope it helps.

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I think for around $400 you can get the top-of-the-line American Case Co. Suspension case. My violin case is American Case Co. and it's a great company. The cases are guaranteed for life, and I've never had a single problem in the six years that I've owned it and I know someone who's got one over 10 yrs old and it still looks great.

Musafia... I don't think you'll find a nice case by them in the $2-400 range. Maybe replace the dash with a comma and you'll find one ($2,400). My viola case is made by Gordge who supplied Hill and Sons for... well... as long as I can remember. I believe that's in the $400-600 range. It's a lovely case though. Potter's Violins is the only place that you can get them from I believe, unless you live in England.

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I bought a bottom-of-the-line suspension Bobelock (ca $150 at an expensive shop) and like it very well.

I expect that if ever I have an expensive fiddle and/or live in a dry climate, I'll buy a Weber case because they seal better, but at present my Bobelock seems to meet my needs excellently.

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You may be able to find a bottom of the line Musafia not much more than $400 -- on their website they have some closeouts and also some refurbished cases that are priced lower than usual. Their cases are *very* nice, but most are expensive.

As for Bobelock, I've got two Bobelock cases and think they're fine. They are attractive and well-designed for storage of rests, lots of music, etc. I think that would make them especially good for lugging around a campus. My only real objection is that although they are very light, the rectangular violin case is a bit large.

They are probably not as protective from serious impact as the Musafia or American Case Company cases, as they are made at least partially of foam (that is why they are light). But they are suspension cases and do a good job of protecting instruments through everyday stuff.

Some of the mailorder places have very good discount prices on the Bobelocks -- you should be able to find at least some of their cases for <$200, and most for <$300. For the money they are a very good deal. If you call Bobelock directly, they will refer you to a good mailorder place to buy.

Happy shopping.

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Theresa,

Since there is often a *lot* of discussion about cases on the board here, you must be puzzled indeed!

I've bought new cases in several different circumstances, probably typical:

1) Case breaks or is damaged in some important way. While my violins were hibernating at my parents' home, one of the cases became a kind of cat scratching post. This unwanted attention made it unusable for transport, although the violin was perfectly safe inside the case. But cases can often wear out even without the help of cats -- hinges break, covers tear, zippers jam, etc -- and in our throw-away society it is not always easy to get them repaired.

2) You decide you hate your case. Many reasons for this one -- one case I replaced at the first chance was a thermoplastic resin case with that alumninun trim that seems to seek out your instrument to chip it. But I also recently splurged and replaced a perfectly good case just because I wanted a smaller one. This latter example was pretty much just spending $ unneccesarily, which I have been known to do from time to time! wink.gif

But many people happily keep their cases for years and years -- essentially forever. If you are mostly a car-traveller (not subways or busses) and reasonably careful, your case may well outlive you.

A nice old case is a very classy accessory, like a beautiful classic car!

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If going to college, consider that you possibly will be traveling on airplanes. Due to my daughter's bad experience about being denied boarding on Delta, she now has a dart-shaped Bobolock suspension viola case that is smaller and lighter (although still not withing dimension guidelines) than her previous rectangular case. It has room for two bows, and is not the bottom-of-the-line but was still under $300 to $400. A dart violin case would be even smaller. It's black with green velvet inside. Her previous larger Bobolock case wore well. The new one has fittings for backpack straps which are popular with travelers and students.

AB

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I can't praise Musafia cases enough. I have a Master Series violin case and it is without question the most luxurious and protective case out there.....

Because of this, it's not cheap, and it's not lightweight, but it's as strong as a bank vault and it has a very high oooo-ahhh factor.

I'm in the market for a viola case again and I heard Musafia just introduced a lightweight adjustable viola case. I don't care how much it costs... I WANT ONE!

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I have a Bobelock, and I like it very much. Got it at a shop here in Northern VA. It was probably around $300-400, I'm not quite sure. Actually, I think it was less, around $200. The case and bow came with the violin and were all included in the price, so that's why I'm not sure of the price of the case.

Anyway, it's a good case. Plenty of protection, if that's all you need. Doesn't have a barometer or anything special like that.

[This message has been edited by Jascha (edited 07-25-2000).]

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Dear friend we have just what you are looking for, we are well known all over the world for supplying the very best bow hair,

and we would like to tell you that we have been desining on our premisis our new violin case,this case has gone on very high test to meet the very highest standards that any one can make if you would like me to send some detailes to you please get in touch

thank you

Mark Sowden www.sowden.co.uk

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Nobody can ever possibly appreciate the value of a good case until the one containing a precious instrument gets stepped on, run over by a Volkswagen, caught in a vengeful revolving door, trampled by an elephant, baked in a hot car, dropped onto a hard surface, or even just knocked around on a subway. If I had a valuable instrument (I don't) I would DEFINITELY NOT go cheap on a case. Although my instrument is not very valuable, it is still very dear to me. I feel an item that brings me such joy deserves to be housed in a worthy container....

Plus, instruments may come and go, but a good case will stay with you for a good long while....

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After all the talk about their cases, I checked out the Musafia website yesterday - and if you dig far enough you will find that they provide additional, optional, special features including thermal protection that will do a terrific job of insulating for a significant length of time even if the case is exposed to direct sunlight with an ambient air temperature of up to 90°F, if their data are true. This would still not be totally protective of a violin in a case exposed to the sun through the window of a hatchback - even if it would be safe sitting on the roof of the (parked) car or on your patio!

Andy

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Also....

Besides the Musafia, another wonderful case is the one manufactured by Kolstein. They have beautiful crushed velvet interiors and they're built VERY tough despite being relatively light in weight. They have all the standard features (with some really nice touches, like real polished ebony bow-spinners instead of plastic ones, a very cool attache-style combination lock, and brass accents inside).

The adjustable viola model has a heavy duty adjusting mechanism which doesn't come loose (as is the case with some others).

For my viola, the choice is between the Kolstein and the Musafia. The Kolstein is considerably less expensive. I'll make a decision soon and let y'all know.

Although you can see the cases at www.kolstein.com the photos do not do the case justice.

[This message has been edited by Ludwig (edited 07-28-2000).]

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I believe Mr. Kolstein said it was plywood reinforced with fiberglass.... he actually told me quite a bit about it's construction (most of which I don't remember). He's very confident that his cases are very protective. He said that he designed the case himself and it's manufactured in the Philippines.

I decided to go with a Kolstein case. It's a great value for the money, I think.... and it IS quite beautiful......

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Violinist82,

All this talk of cases got me to thinking of how I am frustrated every time I close it, by the latches on my 30-year old Jaeger violin case.

So, yesterday during a visit to Ifshin Violins, in Berkeley California, I looked at Musafia (he carries only the 3010 Luxury model for about $500) and Bobelock cases (he has quite a selection). I chose a Bobelock (I think it's a model 1017, $249); its distinctive feature is a lot of storage space in the area where the violin's scroll rests - this was the deciding feature for me.

Over many, many, many years I have learned the value of such storage space, but have never had it before. I can keep my shoulder rest there as well as my chin and cleaning cloths (should I so choose). This case provides one large compartment to the left of the scroll, that opens perpendicular to the length of the case, and two narrow compartments along the neck space that open parallel to the neck, on either side of the case. This is plenty of space for everything I have ever carried in a case. Although my shoulder rest will fit in either one of the side compartments, not all shoulder rests will. Lagomorph tells me that her shoulder rest is too long, for example.

In the Musafia case, this area of multiple compartments was closed off as lateral cushioning, as it so often is and has been in cases.

For me this storage space was the deciding factor in choosing the Bobelock, I would have bought the Musafia at twice the price, had it had either more closed storage space around the neck, or possibly had it been open around the neck and scroll as with the cheaper Bobelink and the less expensive Musafia Studio Model. The cheaper Bobelock, which is open around the neck and scroll of the violin allowing you to store everything but the kitchen sink either there or in the sinble large "perpendicular" compartment, was available at Ifshin selling for about $100 less.

Both the Bobelock and Musafia models had an extra handle at the top of the case (where one might lean on it like a cane - or to help you pull it off a car seat). The Musufia's handles were much more nicely finished, as is the entire case - although I think I prefer the simple one-color outer canvas case of the Bobelink to the multicolor Musafia canvas. To me there is something a little too attractive about a case that is too beautiful on the outside where every passerby can see it - I want my beauty on the inside, for mey eyes.

Andy

[This message has been edited by Andrew Victor (edited 08-02-2000).]

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Ludwig,

I'm seriously considering the Kolstein humistat violin case. I will probably have many questions over the next several days. First, what kind of musician are you, in other words, do you play your viola regularly or travel a lot with it? Do you like the combination lock and can you input your own number? Did you see the green interior, if so was it an olive shade or a hunter shade? Does it have an exterior music pocket? Is the suspension very protective? That's all I can think of for now. Thank-you

violinist82

[This message has been edited by violinist82 (edited 07-30-2000).]

[This message has been edited by violinist82 (edited 07-31-2000).]

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I'm very happy with a Bobelock 1014 that I

ordered from Music City Strings at:

http://musiccitystrings.com/2bobelock2.htm

The interior is very pretty and it is solid at a reasonable price. I fell down a flight of cement stairs and into the street (pretty embarassing). I figure the Lord used my case to break my fall and save me from breaking my neck...

The description is:

Full French Fit, Hill Style Oblong Violin Case

Suspension, four bow holders, three pockets, blanket, string tube, hydrometer, shoulder strap and large outside music pocket. Weight: 7.2 lbs. Available in velvet or silk.

Suspension Velvet ............ $247.50

Suspension Silk ................ $274.50

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Hi 82,

I don't find it bulky. It's the same size as all oblong cases. The handle is comfortable. It also has a handle on the end so you can hold it upright in a crowded elevator or whatever.

I don't notice the weight either (but I'm 6'2" and 176 lbs). A small high school girl might notice the 7.2 lbs. of the case more. There are two ways to attach the shoulder strap so you can carry it on your shoulder like a purse or swung over one shoulder like a back pack.

One thing I didn't like was the "just made" chemical glue smell it had when I first got it. But that disappeared after about a month.

Also, the web page didn't mention a hydrometer, but I was pleasantly surprised to find one in there when it arrived.

I don't know exactly what Hill or French fit means. I'm guessing that French fit means it follows the contour of the violin at the scroll. If you look closely at the photos in the url above you can see the difference in the 1017 and 1014 models. The 1017 has an open area around the scroll whereas the 1014 has a spade shaped area around the scroll (which I like). I don't understand why the 1017 would be heavier and more expensive.

cheers,

charly

[This message has been edited by charly (edited 07-31-2000).]

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violinist82:

I'm not sure what you mean by "What type of musician," but I do practice daily for about an hour and I carry my case around for 2 days out of the week.

I don't feel one way or the other about the combination lock on the case... You definitely CAN set your own combination, but I don't really have any use for a lock at all. I don't mind it, though... I like the <click> when you open the case....

The green color is very nice.... there are actually 2 greens... one is a dark teal (mine) and the other is sort of a light olive green.... I actually prefer th olive green, but it's only available on the violin case.

It has a very substantial exterior music pocket. and lots of storage inside. I'm afraid the viola case has no compartment large enough for my shoulder rest however. I believe the shoulder rest fits in the large compartment in the violin case.

The suspension is definitely protective on this case.... the cushions are fairly deep. I have a viola with an unusually large scroll, so the cushion for the upper bouts is kinda useless since the scroll rests on the bottom of the case. That's my only problem with the case. This shouldn't be a concern at all on the violin case, however....

These cases are among the most beautifully finished cases I've seen... second to the Musafia.... The much lower price makes them easy on the wallet too....

While they are relatively lightweight, they're not considered "superlight" cases. But such is the price one pays for maximum protection. My Musafia violin case weighs a TON and I wouldn't trade it for anything.....

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