A Long Way from Fender Guitars
Established in Anaheim, California, in 1977 by founders Dave Sanderson and Steve Kottman, SKB first began manufacturing guitar cases. By 1987, the company was exceeding $200,000 per month in sales. SKB then had expanded out to include medical cases, computer cases, laser cases and military equipment, along with their initial products for music, audio, industrial and electronics protection.
Ten years later, SKB had grown to 500 employees and opened their fourth manufacturing shop in Orange, California. In 2002 the MIL-SPEC products became available. The waterproof iSeries cases followed in 2004.
SKB utilizes a proprietary copolymer polypropylene (PPC) to form their injection-molded cases. This type of polypropylene is slightly softer than the more widely used homopolymer (PPH) type but offers greater impact strength and is tougher and more durable. It also has better stress crack resistance than PPH. Depending on the end use requirements, PPC can be tailored for different requirements by using different molecular properties and additives during the injection molding process.
All SKB iSeries utility cases feature a waterproof and dustproof mating surface. They are submersible and conform to MIL-STD-810G resistance to corrosion and impact damage. They use a full-length hinge that is molded into the case itself. The snap-release latches can be retrofitted with TSA-compatible locks or keyed to an owner’s preference. In accordance to MIL-STD-648C, the cases have automatic ambient pressure valves fitted. The case hardware—latches, handle, wheels and hinges—can be quickly replaced in the field. Security is assured by reinforced padlock protector clips on all the padlock holes.
The waterproof/submersible test required that the case be submerged for over 40 hours between depths of 8 feet to 10 feet. No modifications were allowed. When the case was recovered, no water was found inside.
The impact test subjected the case to 7.44-ft-lb-per-inch loading with no observable damage.
Four different cases were provided for our testing/examination. By model numbers, they were: 1610-10BC, 2011-7B-M, 2914-15BT and 3614 AR.
This case is 16in.x10in.x10in. with a ½-inch lid depth. It features four sheets of cubed “pull-and-pluck” foam that can be customized for any size handgun. It has two grip handles and one lid handle, all rubber over-molded. It’s solvent-, corrosion- and fungus-resistant. The ambient pressure equalization valve is MIL-STD compliant.
Interior case dimensions are 20.38in.x11.44in.x7.50in. with a 2-inch lid depth. It, like all the iSeries cases, has passed the certified waterproof and drop tests. It has the same trigger-release latch system and ambient pressure equalization valve as other SKB iSeries cases. Its interior foam is cut to hold up to six pistols and 12 magazines, plus other accessories.
Interior case dimensions are 29in.x14in.x15in. with a 2-inch lid depth. Two 13.25in.x14in.x3.75in. removable trays fit in the top of the case. This case reminds me of nothing so much as my old Army footlocker—only about 10 times stronger. It has all the SKB features including multiple carry and tow handles and a pair of sturdy wheels. It has three reinforced padlock holes as well as the ability to accept locking latches.
The iSeries 3614 AR rifle case is an injection-molded watertight case fitted with heavy-duty, 2-pound density, closed-cell foam formed into six cavities that will accommodate shorter AR-type rifles with an overall length of 35 inches or less. The scope cavity has removable plugs to accept scopes of various lengths.
All iSeries cases are made in the USA, feature field-replaceable hardware and come standard with an Unconditional Lifetime Guarantee. SKB offers over 50 different case sizes and interior configurations (empty, cubed foam, layered foam, custom foam, dividers, etc.). Custom colors, foam and other options are available. Several new sizes are added every year. Contact SKB (skbcases.com) for additional information.
SKB cases are MIL-STD for drop, immersion, corrosion, dust and fungus. Short of driving an M1A2 Abrams tank over them, they are virtually indestructible.
SKB’s largest case, the iSeries 6018-8 Waterproof Utility Case with layered foam, which is 36.50in.x14.50in.x6.00in., is the right answer for many problem firearms due to size. In this case, an MG42 and a Maxim MG08/15 both fit comfortably.
The model 2011-7B’s interior foam is cut to hold six handguns and 12 magazines. It has all the features of all the other iSeries SKB cases.
The SKB trigger-release latch can be configured to take TSA locks, or the reinforced padlock holes can utilize your personal padlocks.