Hard Cases for Rifles

Discussion in 'Hunting Equipment, Gear & Optics' started by lblee08, Mar 20, 2009.

  1. lblee08

    lblee08 New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Member of:
    SCI, Jackson, MS Chapter, NRA
    I will be traveling to South Africa for the first time for a safari hunt next June, and am looking for suggestions for good hard cases to pack my rifles for the trip. I have heard all of the horror stories about damaged guns and optics as a result of baggage handlers etc. and want to insure that my equipment arrives safely. Thank you.
  2. AfricaHunting.com

    AfricaHunting.com FOUNDER AH Ambassador

    Joined:
    Oct 1, 2007
    Messages:
    16,134
    Likes Received:
    12
    Location:
    USA
    My Photos:
    4887
    lblee08, here is a link to the Africa Hunting resource directory where there are a few companies that offer hard gun cases with direct links to their websites. Hunters I know seem to really like the Tuffpack, but it really depends what you are looking for because the hard gun cases are all a bit different even though they serve the same purpose. Hopefully AH members can give you more personal insight.
  3. Skyline

    Skyline AH Fanatic

    Joined:
    Dec 27, 2008
    Messages:
    639
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    19
    Member of:
    SCI Life Member, MLOA, DU, MWF, MTA
    lblee08...........as Jerome mentioned, a lot of hunters really like the Tuffpack.
    The second trip I made overseas, I had a two rifle case.......aluminum with welded corners. On the way home, between NYC and Chicago the case was turned into an aluminum frisby. Two corners blown out, one stock snapped, crushed scope. Obviously had been driven over or .......well your guess is as good as mine.

    With the very generous insurance payout of $400 :rolleyes: I purchased a two rifle size Pelican Travel Vault case and I have never had another problem. Just another option to consider. The new ones have wheels on one end to make hauling it around a lot easier in the airports.
  4. Calhoun

    Calhoun AH Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2009
    Messages:
    478
    Likes Received:
    1
    My Photos:
    10
    Member of:
    SCI N.E. Wisconsin Chapter - WisNRA
    I have to agree with Kelly those new cases with the wheels are the cats meow when roaming around the airports. I own a nice 2 gun aluminum case like kelly had and have had no problems to date. But anything can & will go wrong with luggage & stuff being handled in airports. If I was to purchase new again that would be my choice!
  5. casemaker

    casemaker New Member

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2009
    Messages:
    1
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hard cases for storage and transit

    Of course I am biased, but I have seen every case manufactured in the world go through testing and no other case can withstand the torture that a Starlight Case can take. There is no comparison when it comes to performance. There are some good products out there and it is tough to filter through the claims some companies make, but I guarantee that anyone that has owned a Starlight Case will recommend it without hesitation. 100%
  6. Gloucester

    Gloucester AH Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    Messages:
    41
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    2
    Member of:
    NGA, BDS
    Hunted:
    Namibia, South Africa, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe, England, Scotland, Norway, Austria
    I think Pelicases are the best you can get: crush-proof, shock-proof, bullet-proof. You can drop it from height then run over it without damaging the contents. I have two and they have served me well. It just doesn't make sense to get a good rifle and scope and then pack it in a cheap case; but so many people do it.
  7. enysse

    enysse AH Ambassador

    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2009
    Messages:
    5,749
    Likes Received:
    59
    My Photos:
    32
    Member of:
    Northeast Wisconsin SCI chapter, Lifetime member of NRA,RMEF
    Hunted:
    Namibia, South Africa (East Cape, Guateng and Limpopo)
    I saw a brand new case from Cabela's with the wheels on the bottom. It didn't even make one way to Africa....and the one wheel was gone! Luckly the guy says Cabela's has a 100% guarenteed satisfaction of any purchase. He was going to return it.
  8. Mike70560

    Mike70560 AH Fanatic

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    2
    My Photos:
    110
    Member of:
    NRA, DU, DSC
    Hunted:
    Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania
    I made my first trip with an aluminium case and a plastic case from Cabelas with no problems, just lucky I guess.

    Since then I bought a Storm Case for my double. It has wheels you can actually use and can be stood upright on the end without falling over. It seems to be very well made. I feel much better travelling with it as opposed to the Cabelas case or even the aluminium case.

    I also own several smaller Pelican cases. They are bulletproof also.

    When I place a bolt gun in any case I always first remove the bolt and keep the bolt in the case. This can help prevent damage.
  9. Heeler75

    Heeler75 AH Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2009
    Messages:
    86
    Likes Received:
    0
    Member of:
    SCI
    I bought the Cabela's "bullet proof" double-scoped rifle wheeled case for my up coming trip to RSA. We'll see how it holds up. I'm a little concerned though that the space is gonna be tight for my Winchester Model 70 and CZ-550. Both are scoped. Even though it's advertised as for two large scoped rifles.

    And these cases are made by ICC for those that might not know.
  10. Ray Atkinson

    Ray Atkinson AH Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2009
    Messages:
    348
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    23
    Member of:
    SCI Dallas
    Hunted:
    RSA, Botswana, CAR, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Mozambique, Kenya way back when, and a few others that I can't remember.
    I think I have used every case in the cabellas catalog..I never was satisfied with any of them, even the very high dollare ones..The ones with bars running through the latches being the worst as the airlines bend the bar and its hell to get the gun out of them and they do that every time you fly..

    About 15 years ago I bought a tuff pak and have used it ever since..I like it because it is tough, tough tough...I can put up to 5 guns in it in soft cases and soft cases are almost a must in Africa.

    Nice to have on charter flight hunts to help keep weight down because I sometimes leave the tuff pak in a hotel vault or the PHs home, and take the soft cases into camp on the charter flight, thus keeping the weight down and that may result in a cheaper charter flight ....I also use the soft cases to protect my gun, in the outside gun racks on the trucks.

    I can pack jackets, boots, camera, and whatever around the guns for padding..I also have mastered the art of packing them so that I can lift the rifle up to the serial number and show it, then just let the gun drop back down in the soft case..I don't have to expose my rifles to half the third world...when I leave the tough pak at the hotel or wherever, I can also pack all the unneeded stuff in it while I am in camp..

    Tuff pak is the only way to go as far as I'm concerned, mine has made at least 50 trips world wide, maybe twice that many? who knows, and it still looks like new except for the battle scars of airline travel on the outside.....
  11. monish

    monish AH Elite

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2009
    Messages:
    1,400
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    1093
    Member of:
    AfricaHunting.com
    Hunted:
    Tanzania, Nepal, Canada,
    Lblee

    Weatherby Cases have been tough n perfect have carried my rifles in it always , never did the rifles got a scratch.

    monish
  12. mstewart44

    mstewart44 AH Senior Member

    Joined:
    Nov 8, 2009
    Messages:
    97
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    12
    Member of:
    SCI
    With the new airline weight restrictrions, you may need to also consider how many guns will you be taking. Personally, I own a Tuffpak and a custom built case from ICC (international case and container). My custom case is designed to carry my bow AND up to two guns, but I have to break my guns down due to the smaller size of my case. However, I am under the 50lb weight restriction. In the Tuffpak, I can pack three guns in their soft case and am still under the weight requirement. If I take more than three guns (if I let a hunting companion pack his gun in my Tuffpak) we are over 50 lbs and the fees can add up quickly. Personally, I don't want to give the airlines any more of my money if I can help it.

    Keep in mind the weight of whatever case you order combined with the weight of your gun (or guns) so you can keep under the weight restrictrions. The charge for over weight is $150 EACH WAY for an international flight on Delta. That can add up quickly if you are not careful.
  13. swampdonkey

    swampdonkey AH Member

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2010
    Messages:
    27
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    17
    Member of:
    sci,wild sheep,nra,local shooting club
    I have used a Tuffpak for 16 years and 21 overseas trips.It always shows up with afew more scratches each time but guns and scopes have never been damaged.The wheels are still there too.Good luck in your search.
  14. daggaboyblog

    daggaboyblog AH Veteran

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2009
    Messages:
    179
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    28
    Member of:
    Peninsular Firearms Academy
    Hunted:
    Australia, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Malta
    I use the Pelican 1750, a 2-gun model with wheels. Definitely able to drive a 4x4 over this thing.

    It does way 10kg (22lb) empty, so I always pay for excess luggage unless there is a nice lady behind the counter...

    Given the cost of airfare, hunting, shipping, taxidermy, insurance, etc - i'm happy to pay the excess for the peace of mind that i will not have a problem with the rifles.
  15. browningbbr

    browningbbr AH Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2009
    Messages:
    330
    Likes Received:
    1
    My Photos:
    25
    Member of:
    SCI Northeast Wisconsin Chapter, NRA, Local Sportsmen's Club
    Hunted:
    South Africa
    I have pelican cases for my trap and sporting clays guns and for one camera. They have held up to airline abuse for years. My wife and I have Do-All cases for our rifles. They are heavy as hell, but have wheels that make them usable in airports. Both held up without a mark even though the padlocks got busted to hell on the return flight from the RSA.

    I can recommend either of these brands.

    - browningbbr
  16. michaelhh375

    michaelhh375 AH Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Messages:
    154
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    18
    Member of:
    Swedish hunting association
    Hunted:
    Sweden, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, Mozambique, Spain, Austria, Germany and Canada
    Iblee08.

    Make sure to have a quick release mount for scope, and pack scope in hand luggage. Also in what ever case you use for rifle, make sure to bring spare mounts for scope. Of cause, you must pack bolt in separate case, and never in hand-luggage, cause bolt is a vital weapon part.... Pack bolt and ammo ( in hard boxes) in suitcase. Wish you happy hunting !

    Mikehh375
  17. Mike70560

    Mike70560 AH Fanatic

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    2
    My Photos:
    110
    Member of:
    NRA, DU, DSC
    Hunted:
    Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania
    Michaelhh375,

    Have you ever had problems with TSA carrying a scope in carry on. I always thought it was a good idea but was concerned that an over zealous TSA agent would cause problems.

    BTW I always remove the bolt and keep it in the same case as the rifle. The airline loses your bag you can find ammo and clothes but never a bolt.
  18. michaelhh375

    michaelhh375 AH Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Messages:
    154
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    18
    Member of:
    Swedish hunting association
    Hunted:
    Sweden, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, Mozambique, Spain, Austria, Germany and Canada
    Hi Mike.

    Its illegal to have bolt and rifle in same case, according to all airlines, however, not so many personnel by in-checking, knows to much about weapon transport. IE. KLM Airline, you must have approved special license to be able to bring rifle, min 14 days handling, including inspection of packing before checking in rifle, bolt, ammo....The worst airline in the world ? British Airways, must declare guns, minimum, one week before departure, and when rifle arrives London, all rifles are special scanned, and this handling is extremely ruff, even guns in TUFFPAC, can be broken ( we had a drilling broken ). The best airlines, like Lufthansa, South African Airlines etc, No problem With Anything ! They are just concern about your ammo, meaning that you have packed ammo in hard boxes, and not in ammo-belt, lose, in plastic-bag and such. If bad luck, rifle case gone, and can not be found, immediately Police will ask you for the bolt, and IF you had in same case, meaning you have transported "complete rifle" you are in BIG problem.

    Mikehh375
  19. michaelhh375

    michaelhh375 AH Veteran

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Messages:
    154
    Likes Received:
    0
    My Photos:
    18
    Member of:
    Swedish hunting association
    Hunted:
    Sweden, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Tanzania, Mozambique, Spain, Austria, Germany and Canada
    NB. Its NOT illegal according airlines to pack rifle and bolt in same case ! Its illegal according to European gunlaw to leave a weapon out of sight without make sure that weapon are without bolt, or other vital part on weapon. Therefor, we must pack bolt and ammo in one case ( suitcase) and rifle in a separate case.
  20. Mike70560

    Mike70560 AH Fanatic

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2009
    Messages:
    804
    Likes Received:
    2
    My Photos:
    110
    Member of:
    NRA, DU, DSC
    Hunted:
    Zimbabwe, Mozambique, Tanzania
    I have traveled through Amsterdam on KLM with rifles. Bolt in the same case, pump shotgun assembled, and Ruger No. 1, well I do not know what you would do with it. KLM was actually a pleasure to deal with.

    Could you furnish a link to the "European" gun law that requires the bolt be removed in transit. Most countries in Europe have differing gun laws.

    In the states not only is it legal to have the bolt in you can also fly with ammo in the same case as the gun. I have done that several times.

    Continental Airlines Baggage Information for Sports Equipment

    Overseas is a different situation with ammo and permits and that is why it pays to use a quaility travel agent that specializes in travel to Africa for hunting.

Share This Page