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seeesharky

Traveling with a Gates

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Hi

Has anyone got any brilliant and innovative ways of traveling with a large Gates housing? My pelican case is no longer an option as they are too heavy and luggage restrictions are so strict. I would love to hear any creative suggestions. Anyone had success with hand luggage.

Ciao

Julia

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I don't use Pelican cases at all now for air travel as they are heavy and attract the attention of greedy or troublesome customs officials and baggage-handling thieves. Air travel with u/w video gear has been much easier and less stressful since I stopped.

 

I put my camera inside my big old Light & Motion Bluefin housing, remove the handles, and just carry it on completely bare except for a lens cap. I've done quite a few flights like this, and haven't had a problem so far, even though I had a pretty heavy Lowepro carry-on backback as well. One of those nice boys crewing a British Airways flight to Australia even squealed with delight when he saw it.

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One of those nice boys crewing a British Airways flight to Australia even squealed with delight when he saw it.

 

When he saw what!? :lol:

 

Dean

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Julia, it'd be much easier to recommend solutions if you could roughly list what you want to carry. How large is the housing? A Red or EX1? What other accessories? How many cameras?

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I switched my pelican case over to a Porter Case (AV kit model) and according to one site it weights 5lbs. I am not sure it would be big enough for a Gates housing but I

use mine for a Patima Smart III housing and can also fit a lot of extras. This case also doubles as a cart to which you can stack your other luggage or cases and is the legal dimensions

for a carry on. If you search on the web, you can find it for under $100.

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Becky, have you tried putting the Porter case through the SizeWise slot? When I had a Porter Case, it would not fit. The manufacturer told me that the various extensions actually made it larger than the sizewise but it was within the 45" measurements overall. A bit of a pain to have to argue about it with airport staff at international airports.

 

Furthermore, Julia is in Australia, where the airport can be a bit draconian about weight. The PC is 5kg empty. At the most, one can put maybe 7kg stuff in depending on airlines and whether they weigh the bags.

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Since this thread is making suggestions, I am guessing that its ok for me to make one as well. My carry on is usually heavier than my checked bags and my cam and housings are always in carry on these days. I agree that the Pelican case these days is a bit heavy but I used to put it with the housing in the rattiest dive bag there ever was with only one, central compartment zipper that actually worked, and checked that in. No one would ever suspect there was anything of value in that bag and I traveled all over the world with it without a problem. I have used the Lowepro bags and they are of high quality. Unsure of all the sizes they come in but I currently use a ThinkTank International bag for my carry on stuff and have no problems fitting the housing, lights et all in it when I travel. I have to put it in the overhead horizontally but haven't had problems with the airlines because of it.

Steve

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Try and squeeze it into hand luggage... A few times I have gone to the airport with my wife, I check in with my camera bag as hand luggage but don't have the housing in it, they look at it, weight it. Then go around the corner and chuck in the housing, although not advised I have the camera in the housing but pack out the empty space with socks / undies etc etc so it won't move. With the SWP 44 I then pack it in a smaller flight case and wrap in a wetsuit or try and palm it off to a friend to put in their hand luggage.

 

Be careful though with smaller planes as the bag won't fit in the overhead locker or the seat in front and I have been in a few awkward situations where the cabin crew said they would take it for me and she could barely lift it....

 

It's never easy.....

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Hi Julia, we have many ways of traveling with Gates housings. Please let us know what housing and accessories you are wanting to travel with and we can make suggestions.

It's actually funny you answered this. Its actually a Z1 housing that used to be owned by Hollywood divers, you can still make out the yellow writing on the housing.

I am just taking the bare minimum, standard port and monitor, would love to take fathom port but its just will be way too heavy. I have been thinking about stripping the housing down and seeing if it will snuggly fit my Low-Pro for carry on, but if I do that my 5d mark 2 sadly may have to stay home.

Look forward to any suggestions

:D

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buy a photographers jacket for the 5D and a couple of lenses, you'll look like an idiot but who cares :D

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buy a photographers jacket for the 5D and a couple of lenses, you'll look like an idiot but who cares :D

Haha, more so than I do already??? Damn

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Nice one Jonny, a few times I have checked in with my "newspaper and pullover" as hand luggage then gone around the corner to pick up my 20kg carry-on bag from whoever took me to the airport :D (My mum HATES it and says she feels like a criminal, and I tell her it's the airline that's criminal in their charges blah blah.). It depends where you're flying from. In the UK they weigh your carry-on at check-in and hold you to 7kg. In Asia they generally don't care much and you often see folk dragging the entire farm's harvest onto the plane in woven polyprop sacks.

 

Another top travel tip I have is to get a Lowepro "Orion Mini" beltpack. I usually cram about 8kg of dense and valuable stuff such as hard drives and batteries into it, as well as passport, phone etc., but it's just small enough to get generally overlooked as your main carry-on item. Never been challenged over it in several years and if they ever tell me it qualifies as a 2nd carry-on item I'll tell them it's a well-padded money belt.

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While I have never had my carry on's weighed, one thing I always do and that is that if the person taking the ticket before actually boarding is on my left, I keep the carry on diagnally on my right so it is out of her line of vision. The opposite would apply if they were on my right. I am pretty sure this helps.

Unfortunately, when taking a hopper from San Diego to LAX, there really is no room for carry ons and they give you that valet ticket. Then as we march out to the plane, I explain to the baggage person that it has fragile gear in it and ask if he would load it last. They always say yes but, even then, I don't board the plane and just stand there so they see me watching and then put my carry on last so nothing is bouncing on top of it. This has served me well.

Steve

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Go to your local offshore/ inland dive site ... Save money

 

Dean

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I always just use a large "carry on" bag. Go to a good travel bag or department store with your housing (or the measurements) and find a carry-on bag that is large enough to contain the stripped-down housing but small enough to fit the airport measurement test. Make it a strong, top-quality professional bag. The black Swiss Army Victorinox bags are good.

 

Pack the bag with the housing in the middle wrapped in a towel, and the other essential bits (lights, lens, handles, monitor) around the edge. Keep the camera inside the housing - make sure that the housing is vertical - this'll be fine because you won't drop it. Remove the o-rings and put them in a ziplock inside the housing.

 

Go to the airport dressed well. Good shirt, long pants, nice shoes. Try to look as business-like as possible. The whole point of the bag and the dress is to look like a professional business traveller. Airlines love business travellers.

 

When checking-in, going in to the boarding lounge, passing through security and boarding the plane, walk and act as if the bag is nice and light.

 

Been doing the above for years and always managed to get 15 to 18 kg of camera gear into the cabin. (Caveat: most of my dive travel in around Asia)

 

Regards

Peter

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As long as the housing is not closed completely so pressure doesn't build, why do you remove the o rings?

Steve

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When checking-in, going in to the boarding lounge, passing through security and boarding the plane, walk and act as if the bag is nice and light.

Been doing the above for years and always managed to get 15 to 18 kg of camera gear into the cabin. (Caveat: most of my dive travel in around Asia)

 

Hi Peter, I had a bad experience in the red sea.

 

My last time there I spent two hours in an endless lane because airline guys were weighing all the hand baggage. One by one, no exception. The flight flew with a two hours delay but they earned more with the extra weight than the regular tickets :)

They discovered the old trick of the unsuspected lovely small hand baggage which weigh like depleted uranium :lol:

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As long as the housing is not closed completely so pressure doesn't build, why do you remove the o rings?

Steve

 

Hi Steve,

 

On some housings, that could work too but, with my housing, it is either closed or open. The clamps hold the two pieces together. I'd be worried about the front part of the housing moving around and damaging the camera if the clamps were not holding the two halves firmly together.

 

Regards

Peter

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Hi Peter, I had a bad experience in the red sea.

 

My last time there I spent two hours in an endless lane because airline guys were weighing all the hand baggage. One by one, no exception. The flight flew with a two hours delay but they earned more with the extra weight than the regular tickets :)

They discovered the old trick of the unsuspected lovely small hand baggage which weigh like depleted uranium :lol:

 

Ouch. Were they making people pay for the extra carry-on weight or did you have to move the excess weight to checked baggage?

 

I wouldnt mind paying but I'd hate to stick my housing into the checked baggage. Quite likely to get damaged.

 

Regards

Peter

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