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Thread: Question for Jim Becker - tack trunks?

  1. #1
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    Question for Jim Becker - tack trunks?

    Hi Jim,

    I was wondering if you had ever posted any pictures of your tack trunks? My granddaughters are into riding and I was thinking of building them trunks for Christmas. Problem is, I have no idea how to design one.

  2. #2
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    There are a few build threads in Woodworking Projects here at SMC.

    They are not hard to build...it's a box. But a box makes for a great palet to make for special looks. Most folks keep the inside simple...a couple of rails to support a sliding tray and otherwise wide open. Casters are nice, but use quality. I prefer double locking. I've moved to using "road case" type handles, but they are hard to come by retail...I find them online.
    Last edited by Jim Becker; 07-24-2020 at 6:51 PM.
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    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  3. #3
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    Thanks, Jim! That helps a bunch!

    Brad

  4. #4
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    If the trunk is going to shows it needs to be moved over rough ground. A separate wagon is in order. It will be making multiple trips.

    Make the trunk durable not pretty. Keep the weight down. 3/4" ply will weigh a ton. People will sit and stand on it. Light and durable, a test of skill. And a good pair of handles will be needed. A skeleton keyed lock would be an excellent detail. Paint the interior pink. Make it shed water too.

  5. #5
    Remember that rodents are your enemy. One mouse setting up living quarters in the trunk will destroy just about everything - even helmets.

  6. #6
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    Tom, while most of my commissioned trunks have been barn tack room use only for "fancy" people, the few that were intended to go to shows had extra reinforcement and heavier casters. They were still built with 1/2" veneer plywood, however, because 3/4" stuff is way too heavy. They got road-case handles which has become my standard handle even on the non-traveling variety. They are stronger and MUCH easier on the hands when folks are carrying them.

    And thankfully, NOBODY ever asked for a pink interior. Few asked for a finished interior and those that did paid more for it.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  7. #7
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    Bet we could get some good tips from entertainment roadies.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bender View Post
    Bet we could get some good tips from entertainment roadies.
    I bought and also scratch built a few of those in an earlier life...which is why I use road case handles on my commissioned trunks. I've also use road case type latches on a few, too.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bender View Post
    Bet we could get some good tips from entertainment roadies.
    Too true. Anvil flight cases and the like are amazingly fragile when not closed up. The T&G-like aluminum extrusion that fits together does a lot of the work. More than one guy got handed his hat back in the day for pushing a rack full of amps without the covers latched on and racking the pee-wad out of the case. Box cases like for amps heads and speaker cabinets are much tougher.
    "The Danish government believes that if we train 5,000 designers, and produce
    one Hans Wegner, the money is very well spent." - Ole Gjerlov-Knudsen

  10. #10
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    A lot of road cases for the entertainment industry are built from 1/4" plywood and aluminum extrusions with a tolex or laminate cover. They are surprisingly strong, particularly when closed and latched as you noted Glenn. But you can bang something through the side of them if you hit them hard enough...DAMHIKT! I have one case like that from the 1980s and it's marked up but very solid. The case/rack I have for my mixer with other gear under it is 1/2" and 3/8" plywood covered with a carpet like material and only has corner braces. It's also very strong. I have never tried to ascertain the jointery on it.

    My tack trunks are built with .5" cabinet grade veneer plywood with butt joints, screwed and glued. There is a 1/4" thick solid stock veneer overlay to simulate frame and panel. The lids have solid stock for the frame and the same plywood as a panel, inset in grooves. Cases intended for travel have a heavier .75" thick bottom and glued corner braces interially for additional stiffness. The most interesting "portable" setup was for a woman who wanted my stacked setup with the drawer unit on the bottom at the barn, but wanted the primary trunk to be "road worthy". That was accomplished with a removable "road" caster setup, not unlike a moving dolly, that could be attached for the show circuit and removed back at the barn so the trunk could be set back on the drawer unit.
    --

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

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