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Thread: Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

  1. #1
    Dan Sampson mando_dan's Avatar
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    Default Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

    Hey Gang,

    Does anyone have experience with these hard cases? I'm looking to upgrade my plain Jame wood covered with black fake leather (?). It has a nice case cover and has served my well but I'm paranoid that my rambunctious kids will one day, oh I don't know, stand on it or something else equally horrid. I realize that a bouncing kid is likely to break nearly anything so whatever I end up needs to be better than what I have currently.

    Money is an object! The case that appears to offer better protection is the Gator Deluxe ABS Molded case. Does anyone have any experience with these? Pro and cons? And how does the Gator compare to the rather similar Guardian CG-040-MF thermoplastic molded case?

    FYI, my mandolin is a Buckeye F-style. Thanks all!
    1999 Buckeye #18 (Bucky)
    198x Flatiron pancake mandola (no name)

  2. #2

    Default Re: Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

    I have a couple- they do the job. Mine I got used- so they did not cost too much. I think the latches are a bit on the cheap side and could be better but as an inexpensive case, I think they are okay but mine have not really been put to the test- no mishaps! These are my only moulded cases, so I cannot offer a comparison.

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  4. #3

    Default Re: Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

    I have one and am very happy with it. That said, I don’t think it will offer you any better protection than the case you already have. It’s a very good basic case, but it’s not made to withstand a lot of abuse.

  5. #4
    Lurkist dhergert's Avatar
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    Default Re: Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

    I've got one...

    Actually I'm on my 3rd one, the first two heroically gave their lives protecting my mandolin from horrendous falls onto various hard surfaces. After seeing how well my mandolin made it through the first fall, I was convinced, I'd rather give up a case than the mandolin any day. Now my wife and I use these cases for all our main-playing instruments.

    My first Gator ABS case suffered a huge crack in the back of the case after being jettisoned from the back of my SUV when I opened the gate. The SUV was parked rear facing down-hill. The case struck a cement parking stop at full speed. Pieces of ABS flew all over, but the springiness of the ABS and the styro-fill inside the case protected the mandolin.

    The second fall was me tripping over the case in the dark, first kicking it, then falling on it. I was bruised, the case again fractured all over the place, but the mandolin was completely unharmed.

    In both of these incidents, the mandolin was my trusty F-9.

    -- Don

    "Music: A minor auditory irritation occasionally characterized as pleasant."
    "It is a lot more fun to make music than it is to argue about it."


    2002 Gibson F-9
    2016 MK LFSTB
    1975 Suzuki taterbug (plus many other noisemakers)
    [About how I tune my mandolins]
    [7/29/2019 -- New Arrival!!!]

  6. #5
    Registered User
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    Default Re: Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

    Dunno what price they are in USA, but here in UK Hiscox now make an oblong mandolin case. Hiscox fiddle and guitar cases are famously tough (one of their ads has 4 guys standing on a dreadnought guitar case), and my fiddle cases have lasted forever. Good quality fittings etc - but twice as much in UK as a Gator case.

  7. #6

    Default Re: Gator Deluxe ABS Molded Case

    The Gator has good reviews on Amazon, the Guardian- not so good. The quality on Gator cases is generally good for the money. The weakness of ABS cases is that the material is brittle and cracks relatively easy. Will that particular case hold up better to someone standing on it than a wooden one? I'm not so sure. A wooden archtop case with 3-5 laminates resists down pressure better than a flat top case. I own the Gator Journeyman series mandolin case (same price) for home use and it has the best padding of any budget case I've seen. Alas, it's covered in white canvas. Dirt magnet and no water protection. I varnished mine.

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