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packing and transporting my rig

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I think the occasional bendy divider is a fact of life. Sadly.

Dumb question maybe, have you tried lying your housing down rather than having it standing upright? I have to do that with my D500.

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15 minutes ago, TimG said:

I think the occasional bendy divider is a fact of life. Sadly.

Dumb question maybe, have you tried lying your housing down rather than having it standing upright? I have to do that with my D500.

@TimGRather a bendy divider than a bent diver! Jokes aside, I am trying a variety of configurations here just to see what works, I'm terrified of having it lie flat down with the camera inside. For my trip with BA it won't be an issue as I can have 1 carry on and 1 backpack, but generally it's just the single carry on and I need a solution that works for the lowest common denominator, which is the single carry on :(

I'll try out a few different approaches and post it here.

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We may have take off (pun intended). The bent dividers are taking up extra space on the sides but it is giving my more height than the previous bag and a tiny bit more length. I stole a divider from the previous bag which I need to replace as I will be selling that one at some point. I've shot both in the same pic to illustrate.

 

With this setup I should be able to fit:

* D500 + housing + arm from side

* 2x strobes

* 3-4x lenses (60, 105, 10-17, 

* probably a large dome

* (macro port goes in hold luggage)

*  2 zoom gears

* cables

* housing pump

* focus light

* diffusers

* 1 arm + 2 clamps (rest go in the hold)

* Camera charger and maybe aa battery charger + 8 x AAs

With the above I have an entirely redundant kit to be able to take *some* photos if my main luggage goes missing.

8QHenin.jpeg

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Update, not optimally packed, but it works. Just need to squeeze it a tiny bit to zip it up. This will not fit a laptop unless I remove the 1" ball mounts.

 

For reference this is a thinktank rolling backpack v2 with straps on the back for those awkward lembeh trips where you can't roll it anymore :)

ggeBdRX.png

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Just a random anecdote:

Very recently I made a trip to Egypt (Hurghada) from Sweden. We flew Pegasus, which IIRC is Turkish' budget/charter brand. Change of planes in Istanbul. For carry-on luggage I had a Cinebag CB70 Square Grouper, such as this one:
https://fotografit.eu/products/284-cinebags/2340-cb70-square-grouper/

It was stuffed to the brim with camera equipment, weighing in total about 15 kg. I also had a small shoulder bag with laptop, e-book reader, travel documents and such.

Before the trip I was nervous. Flying Pegasus was a last minute change and I feared the charter companies' stinginess with carry-on luggage.

However, all went well. I never tried to hide the bag at check-in or the gate. It was chosen for special inspection at every single security checkpoint the entire trip, but only once was the weight remarked upon. ("It's very heavy" said the security person lifting it to the examination desk. "Yes!" I replied happily, beaming my best smile.) And it being chosen for inspection only stands to reason; must be impossible to see anything on x-ray with the bag packed as it was.

I may have had good luck. But the bag isn't very big. Certainly looks smaller than many cabin bags. Had it been put on the scales at check-in by paragraph happy staff I would have been in trouble for sure, but this time it didn't happen.

Edited by horvendile
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Addendum - contents of the bag:

  • Sea & Sea housing for Nikon Z6/Z7
  • 230 mm Zen dome port
  • 40 mm extension ring
  • Macro port
  • Nikon Z6
  • Nikon Z7
  • Nikon 8-15 mm fisheye
  • Nikon Z 14-30/4
  • Nikon Z 24-70/4
  • Nikon 105 mm macro (F-mount)
  • Nikon Z 40/2
  • FTZ adapter
  • Lots and lots of batteries, for strobes, camera and focus light
  • Vacuum pump and some other small stuff
  • Uh... the taxfree candy I couldn't fit in my shoulder bag

The total weight of 15 kg or slightly more isn't terribly much to lift in itself but the design of the bag made it feel very heavy to carry when wandering the airports.

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Interesting - thanks for that. I've been wondering about using it for flights rather than pulling along my old trusty Pelican 1510.

After much thought I bought the same bag a few months ago. The more I use it, the more I like it. As you say, it holds a ton of stuff (see below) and never looks huge nor, because of the materials used, does it weigh too much empty. I do know what you mean when you say it feels heavy lugging it around (well it is heavy when loaded!) but yeah, it's the dead weight on one arm holding it by the handles.

It's expensive for sure but having worn through a good many cheap cooler bags for temporary rinse tanks/lugging-to-the-boat bags, I think it's worth it.

For moving gear around to go diving I get in mine (with room to spare):

D500 + lens/port etc in Subal housing, 2x Retra strobes with Superchargers, Retra snoot and reflector, dive computer, 2x 5" and 2x 8" arms, spare bits n'bobs.

 

 

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24 minutes ago, horvendile said:

 

Very recently I made a trip to Egypt (Hurghada) from Sweden. We flew Pegasus, which IIRC is Turkish' budget/charter brand. Change of planes in Istanbul. For carry-on luggage I had a Cinebag CB70 Square Grouper, such as this one:
https://fotografit.eu/products/284-cinebags/2340-cb70-square-grouper/ 

It was stuffed to the brim with camera equipment, weighing in total about 15 kg. I also had a small shoulder bag with laptop, e-book reader, travel documents and such.

I recently got the same bag, and my experience pretty much mirrors yours. Stuffed to the brim with camera gear, lenses and batteries, weighing 15kg+, tossed at every security checkpoint, but no problem using it as a carry-on. As far as carrying it, I'm using the shoulder strap, slung across my chest, as a have a 25L dry backpack on my back. Very handy for rinsing the camera rig and dive gear after a day of diving as well.

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Here is my rig and way of dealing with bendy dividers:

Think Tank

it's a street walker Hard drive  and I can stand my housing upright in it fine.  I think the D500 housing is a bit thicker but it may fit the same way.  The bag has my 170mm Zen dome, 100mm Zen dome and macro port packed aling with lenses and 2x Z-240.

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First trip with a new A7C, so still trying to figure everything out, but managed to get most into a Pelican Air 1535 (which weighs in at about 25lbs fully stuffed), which pegs the limit on carry-on physical sizing. Everything fits except one set of arm floats, and I put A7C and lens in my other carry-on. With one trip to Keys from Seattle, this worked out well. The small blue REI bag has arms/clamps, the CMC-2 (in small Nauticam sack) fits on top of the port.

IMG_1962 (4).jpg

Edited by RVbldr

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I wish I could find a bag for my kit. My Luna 8 and arms alone fill everything

IMG-20211111-WA0027.thumb.jpg.f1953fb41a377bea226034042b4720fb.jpg

 

Edited by Davide DB

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Crazy as it is, I actually managed to backpack with my Canon 5D MK III and Nauticam housing + dome a few years back! Granted this didn't include strobes and only 1 lens (16-35 f2.8)

If it's helpful at all to anyone, I just pad it a lot and wrapped clothing around anything fragile. Another thing is to remove the housing arms - makes it a lot more manageable!

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Let's talk about carrying the housing on the boat for a moment.


I am a resident diver and dive most weeks within a 1 to 2 hour drive from home. So I carry the case on the RIB in a plastic crate.
How do you transport it in the boat on trips? I see that many people use very sturdy cooler bags that can also be used for rinsing. In a Youtube video I saw this bag

Cattura.PNG.290989e99215d3c3612a0fdbb2370edc.PNG

Here in Italy I have not been able to find anything similar. cooler bags are small and quite delicate.

Give me feedback and suggestions.

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Davide

Can you find the CineBags in Italy? I bought the Square Grouper some months back after considerable thought and having thrown away a good few cheap cooler bags.

The Square Grouper is expensive but is extremely tough and is big enough for my Subal housing/port, 2 Retra strobes, all the arms etc, a snoot, reflector, 45-degree viewfinder and all the usual bits and bobs.

It must by now have done over 100 dives all on relatively small dive boats and being hauled on and off - and remains in excellent shape. Zips are fine and no signs of salt build-up or corrosion or anything like that. The same could not be said for the cool bags!

I always went to a supermarket on dive trips and bought a laundry basket for hauling my camera system - but no more. The Grouper does it all AND gives me a rinse tank.

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Thanks, Tim

I saw them. I found Cinebags on just one seller here in Europe. But 200 € (225 USD) plus shipping costs is really out of my budget.

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22 minutes ago, Davide DB said:

Thanks, Tim

I saw them. I found Cinebags on just one seller here in Europe. But 200 € (225 USD) plus shipping costs is really out of my budget.

Ouch, yeah, very pricey. 

Next best is big cool bags but I found the zips don't last more than one trip. They are wrecked by the salt.

Collapsible laundry basket?

https://www.amazon.com/SAMMART-Collapsible-Plastic-Laundry-Basket/dp/B079187HTH/ref=sr_1_2_sspa?crid=34N03D9GSI3ZX&keywords=collapsible%2Blaundry%2Bbaskets&qid=1638991330&sprefix=collaps%2Caps%2C282&sr=8-2-spons&spLa=ZW5jcnlwdGVkUXVhbGlmaWVyPUExMUZQMjA5WjY1ME1UJmVuY3J5cHRlZElkPUEwMzQ5MDUwMjI3VVU5RkpHQ1pISyZlbmNyeXB0ZWRBZElkPUEwNjMyMTU2MUdSRTlQSDVDUE80WSZ3aWRnZXROYW1lPXNwX2F0ZiZhY3Rpb249Y2xpY2tSZWRpcmVjdCZkb05vdExvZ0NsaWNrPXRydWU&th=1

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2 hours ago, Davide DB said:

Thanks, Tim

I saw them. I found Cinebags on just one seller here in Europe. But 200 € (225 USD) plus shipping costs is really out of my budget.

Have you looked at large cheap icebags for picnic use? They're pretty good as usually they're fairly watertight (upto the zipper at least) so they can also double up as a place for fresh water when you have a long surface interval.

https://www.google.com/search?q=large+ice+bag+picnic&sxsrf=AOaemvLrnLb0kEJvBZjVDjeQwmGrJ9h0kg:1639000333276&source=lnms&tbm=shop&sa=X&ved=2ahUKEwiRkpqFmNX0AhV0QUEAHVvMDhMQ_AUoAXoECAEQAw&biw=1718&bih=1329&dpr=1

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Problem is that here in Italy that kind of coolers are simply not available.   

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1 hour ago, Davide DB said:

Problem is that here in Italy that kind of coolers are simply not available.   

If you are doing boat trips that you drive to, IMO you don't need cooler bags.  When I'm going shore diving or on a boat the the camera travels in  a standard sturdy plastic tub, It has a piece of closed cell foam on the bottom for a little padding.  Between dives and on the way home I throw a damp old towel over everything so it doesn't dry out then it gets a good soak at home.   The dome has a wet neoprene cover on to stop drying out of the glass and a flat port I use a lens cap.  If you feel the need sprinkle some water on or rinse under a tap before driving home still under the towel.

All you are trying to do is prevent the housing from drying out till you can soak it in fresh water.  Don't know about your boat but our local dive boats aren't equipped to fill the tubs with fresh water in any case. 

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Chris I mostly agree with you and currently I use a plastic tub. 
Sometimes it happens that the space in the boat is minimal. We are 3 or more videomakers and all technical divers. Then I would prefer to have a soft cooler bag to optimize space.
From what I see, it seems that we have different habits and customs in Europe.What we call large or extra large is no more than 40 centimeters (15 inches). The only larger cooler bags are the ones for pizza delivery but of course they are not watertight.
I give up :angry:
 

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18 minutes ago, Davide DB said:

Chris I mostly agree with you and currently I use a plastic tub. 
Sometimes it happens that the space in the boat is minimal. We are 3 or more videomakers and all technical divers. Then I would prefer to have a soft cooler bag to optimize space.
From what I see, it seems that we have different habits and customs in Europe.What we call large or extra large is no more than 40 centimeters (15 inches). The only larger cooler bags are the ones for pizza delivery but of course they are not watertight.
I give up :angry:
 

:rofl: It also applies to food and drink!  You could always transfer the tub idea to your pizza warmer - just throw a damp towel on top to keep everything damp and do your cleanup soak at home.  My routine is when I get home - first that happens is the rig goes in a tub and soaks while I deal with the other needs - cup of tea, cleaning up my dive gear etc. with periodic stops to exercise buttons on the housing.  A hour to 1.5 hrs later I'm ready to deal with the housing and strobes  and they've had a good soaking.

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9 hours ago, TimG said:

Thanks Tim, I saw it on Italian Amazon too.It's too little (13,7 x 11 x 11 inches / 35 x 28 x 28 cm). I have a NA-GH5 with tripod mount and Keldan Luna 8. it's huge, nearly a FF kit. I remember @thetrickster had a AO Cooler 36 which is 50 cm long.

 

 

Quote

:rofl: It also applies to food and drink! 

 

Let's go off topic for a moment. Twenty years ago I worked for a year in the states. I was in Providence, near Boston and every weekend I would dive into the area. The first few full day dive trips were very educational for me. Early in the morning I would stop at a coffee shop near the harbor and buy a sandwich and a bottle of water. On the boat I noticed that all the divers would come aboard with a personal hard cooler stuffed full of ice, coke and non-alcoholic beer and dozens of sandwiches. At lunchtime, in the break between the two dives, everyone was concerned about me, offering me food and drink. Maybe they thought the Italian guy was following some strange cult! :D

 

Quote

You could always transfer the tub idea to your pizza warmer - just throw a damp towel on top to keep everything damp and do your cleanup soak at home.  My routine is when I get home - first that happens is the rig goes in a tub and soaks while I deal with the other needs - cup of tea, cleaning up my dive gear etc. with periodic stops to exercise buttons on the housing.  A hour to 1.5 hrs later I'm ready to deal with the housing and strobes  and they've had a good soaking.

I'd love to be that picky with my equipment....
I do a similar thing but at the docks. I fill the plastic case with my housing with water while I rinse the rest of the gear.
There is usually a race to see who can get to the water hose first and everyone is terrified when I win :B):

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14 minutes ago, Davide DB said:

Thanks Tim, I saw it on Italian Amazon too.It's too little (13,7 x 11 x 11 inches / 35 x 28 x 28 cm). I have a NA-GH5 with tripod mount and Keldan Luna 8. it's huge, nearly a FF kit. I remember @thetrickster had a AO Cooler 36 which is 50 cm long.

Yeah, odd that there aren't any bigger. As you say, must be a cultural thing, Davide. Amazon.com has dozens of them in all sorts of shapes, sizes.... etc. Some of them wouldn't fit in a European car :rolleyes:. Come to think of it, I suspect one or two of them are bigger than my car (Smart FourTwo!)

I'd guess the freight plus import duties/taxes just makes importing one not worthwhile. 

Hmmmm, annoying.

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On 12/8/2021 at 6:58 PM, Davide DB said:

Thanks, Tim

I saw them. I found Cinebags on just one seller here in Europe. But 200 € (225 USD) plus shipping costs is really out of my budget.

Here's one for you. You need to be a bit eagle eyed on various groups but good offers do come up. 

 

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1898642463684432/permalink/3193598724188793/?sale_post_id=3193598724188793

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