Just a quick post to let everyone know about this new double clarinet case I got.  It’s the Protec “Double Clarinet Pro Pac” case.  I’ve had ZERO success finding a good case for my A and Bb clarinets. That’s because they are both “Full Boehm” clarinets, meaning (among other things) they go down to a low Eb, so the lower joints are longer than their “normal” counterparts.

So I decided to try this Protec case, because the Protec site has nice big pictures of it, and it looked like I was going to be able to modify it to fit my oversize clarinets. You see, the case is designed to hold two barrels for each of the clarinets, and the barrel slots sit right at the end of the cutouts for the lower joint of each clarinet. So I figured I could carve out some material at the end of the existing lower joint slots, sacrificing one barrel slot for each clarinet.  

 

Here’s a shot of the case after I removed some material. I used a little X-Acto hobby knife to slice through the blue felt layer and cut away foam.  It was really easy to do. The blue felt is bonded to a layer of dark, soft, bendy foam, and then this felt/foam layer is somehow bonded to the white, denser foam underneath. (Ignore the white at the bottom of the picture; that’s just a couple of Q-tips.) You can see that just north of each bell section there is an empty round indent in the blue felt, and those are the two barrel slots that I sacrificed.

And here is the case with everything in place. You can see there were a few extra pockets inside the case that allow me to keep four barrels inside the case even though I had to sacrifice those two barrel slots.  

I’m really happy to finally have these horns safe inside a great, lightweight, compact case. I’m very happy with the quality of it, especially at the price I paid (a bit over $80 on Amazon). I have some dark satin material left over from a previous case-building project, so maybe this summer I can glue that over the exposed white foam. But it works great now, as is. Be forewarned, this is not a hard shell case, and it looks like it could get crushed if you put something really heavy on top of it. But for normal use, this will be a perfectly safe and protective case, hopefully for the lifetime of me or these clarinets – whichever ends first.

9 thoughts on “Protec Double Clarinet Pro Pac case

  1. This is great, searched everywhere to find out if this can be done with protec case. I want to use it for a normal Bb and a Bb full boehm, which essential gives me an A clarinet if required for orchestral parts. Just wondering, could you not peel back the felt from the ‘soft bendy’ foam, or the separate the soft bendy foam from the hard foam, that way being able to replace the felt down after removing material?

    Cheers.

    • Hi Jason. The material that touches the instrument is not really felt. It doesn’t have that “furry” feel to it like most cases. It seems to somehow be bonded to something else that is about a quarter inch thick (and then the white normal foam is underneath that) so I couldn’t find a way to peel it up, reshape things underneath, and then lay it back down again. It’s hard to describe…

      But since you’ve asked about this, let me see if I can make a video of the case and post it online. I think once I do this, my description from this blog post will make more sense. They say a picture’s worth a thousand words, but if that’s true, then a video is worth a million!

      So keep an eye on the blog page, and I will plan to get this video out as soon as I can. Take care.

      — Steve

      • Wow, looking back at this post, I see how bad those pictures really are. As I said, I will get a video made that will show this case a little better, but I will also try to replace these really blurry pictures!

        — Steve

    • Jason, I made a video yesterday showing this case in detail, and the mods I had to make in order to fit my Full Boehm clarinets into it. Just go to my main blog page and it is the latest post. HTH.
      — Steve

  2. Thank you Steve. Very informative. After watching your video I am actually thinking I may not have to make any cuts (I have a normal Bb and a Bb full boehm). Do you think the lower joint of the Bb full boehm will fit where the normal A lower joint goes in the protec case?

    Thanks again for posting the video!

    Jason

    • Jason, you’ll still have to modify the slot that would normally fit the A clarinet lower joint. I just took out my case, and I can see that the B-flat full-Boehm lower joint, when put into the A clarinet slot, still is too big for the slot as it comes from Protec. You’ll still have to do some cutting – just not quite as much as I did. Your full-Boehm B-flat will come right up to the edge of that second A clarinet barrel slot. You may be able to get a 2nd barrel to stand up in there, but it will be touching the top of your B-flat lower joint. Sorry!

  3. Thanks Steve,
    I suspect as much. I just ordered the case online from http://www.playwindbrass.com.au in Australia for $200AUD (+$20 shipping) – was the cheapest I could find anywhere. I suspect there will be some play in the upper joint slot for the Bb full boehm, but that should be easily fixed with a buffer of some sort.
    Thanks again for all your help.
    Jason

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