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Bow Case When Flying
I'm looking to get a setup that I can pack my bow and gear into. The Sitka Nomad looks too big to be safe passing the oversized baggage test. The Easton Deluxe Roller looks like a good deal. They make a 3615 (36x15x6) and a 3915 (39x15x6). I'm thinking of getting the 3915, but it would be an inch over the 62" bag limit too.
Ideas and/or suggestions?
never had anyone measure anything anywhere anytime. they will weigh them though.
Never had them measure my bags, just weigh. BTW check your math 39+15+6=60".
Fisher, good catch. It should be 39x15x9 or 36x15x9. My bad. Thanks
With extra bag fees what they are I went with a Cabelas size XL Ripcord rolling duffle ($159 last time I checked)...about 42" x 18" x 18" if stuffed. It will handle my soft bow case with two bows, arrow tube and quiver plus a bunch of clothes and sleeping bag for soft packing around the bow and to get the weight up to 49#s. Its oversized but works well for me. If your flying on a hunt I think it is great. I actually had arctic gear in there with two sleeping bags, Baffin boots and the bows/arrows last winter. Weighed about 70#s and was great to roll around an airport instead of packing it. Paid about $28 oversize charge.
Go for it, even if it is oversize, it classified under "sporting goods, archery equipment" in airline rules and no charge. My buddy uses a big ass SKB double bow case with two bows and stuffed with clothes. Just stay below 50#.
Sitka Nomad is awesome and although I've only traveled with it twice, airlines didn't bat an eye and it fits in the normal baggage requirements, not oversized.
Depending on your total bow length. A badlands soft case works well. Wrap bow in clothes. I have had them measure a bag before.
I have had my case measured on several trips. It all depends on which person on which day. Travel often enough and it will happen.
Many great options. Everest trolly 40 or 44 have worked well for me. All my gear in one bag and no issues with oversize charges to date. As mentioned above, Just say it's sporting equipment and be friendly.
I haven't been charged yet for my SKS double bow case. This last trip, the first leg from Houston to Doha, the flight was booked solid. They weighed every bag, to include your carry on bag. They ALMOST measured our bow cases, but it was a male and a female at that station. The female had the tape measure and had walked away for a second. The guy weighed them, they were under 50 lbs, and he asked about them being oversize. I just told him, like I've flown with them a hundred times before, "hey, you never have had a problem with them in the past!" About that time the girl walked back up with the tape measure and said she needed to measure them. He told her "we've never had an issue with his bags before, he's ok, let them go through" and she did. The return trip, not a peep, not a concern.
When we flew last year on Delta, they had no issue with them being oversize, didn't measure, didn't charge.
But I think it really depends on who is there that day, the amount of people getting on the plane, etc. Roll of the dice....
All I have to say is don’t underestimate the will of a Delta baggage handler to take out life’s frustrations on your bow case.
Also try to find a Pole mountain 2 bow ”Hardcase”. I’m not sure if they make them any more. Crazy over built case. Roto molded.
I flew to California to hunt turkey about 5 years ago. I used a friends SKS case and shipped it UPS to my buddies house in California 10 days before my flight. My bow got there on time and was way cheaper than what Delta was going to charge me. Just something to think about.
I’ve flown all over Canada and Europe with my Sitka Nomad with no issues (knock on wood). Never paid extra baggage fees or had any airline question it’s size. My two cents
I’ve flown numerous times with an SKB double bow case. I take two bows, 12 arrows, and sometimes pack some clothes in the case. It always gets weighed but never has been measured.
I just got the Sitka Nomad for my first big flight hunt and am very nervous about its ability to protect my bow. I will be relying almost entirely on the clothes that will be packed in there to offer cushioning.
I've had the Nomad all over heck for some years now. My SKB double just gathers dust. The big soft duffle style bow cases have many advantages.
I pack my compound in a cheapie soft case in the bottom and then gear in Ziplocks plus a bunch of clothes as padding. My Recurve is even easier.
I got a complete DIY alaskan drop camp; tipi, stove and all camp and hunting gear in a duffle and the Nomad last year- both under 50#. Sweet.
As with any flight, you want a goof proof packing system for the TSA guys especially in your bow case.
After a lot research I finally pulled the trigger on a Legend Everest 40 ($260). Its a rolling duffel like the Sitka Nomad ($400) or the Cabela's Ripcord ($160). The Legend is very similar in size to the Sitka and smaller than the Cabela's. All three are oversized (over 62") if you've got them fully stuffed but the Legend and Sitka are just barely over. It look at it like you're doing 59mph in a 55mph zone. I doubt that the airlines will measure a rolling duffel. The airlines will on occasion measure a hard case. A soft rolling duffel is harder to measure than a hard case. As other have said the most important thing as that you keep it under 50#.
I can't lend any experience yet because I just got it two weeks ago but I'm impressed with how it is laid out and padded. There are numerous tie downs so the bow is secure. Legend makes them specifically for traveling with compound bows. They were on sale for Father's Day at 20% off with free shipping.
Check the “real” weight of whatever you buy. it does you no good to buy a 20 pound case
I have a TuffPak hard sided case that looks like a golf club case. It is great and super tough, but the huge downside to it is that it weighs 25 pounds empty. Not too practical. It also measures oversize, however I’ve never had any problems with it. It worked great to haul my bow safely with a couple of rifles a few years ago to Alaska. Practically bulletproof.
skb double bow case only way to go
I bought an Enki Usa case during the pre-sale
it looks very similar to that pole mountain case referenced above.
on 2 trips no extra baggage fee's, seems like a solid case i did loose a wheel though and they will come loose, my only complaint.
I am probably moving forward going to buy one of the Legend Everest or Sitka Nomad bags and split my gear and bows evenly between the 2 cases and bags.
Check with your airline and read their policy like you were a lawyer reading a contract. One by one airlines are changing their policies WRT "sporting goods" especially archery gear being exempt on size. American changed theirs on me in mid trip a couple years ago. Archery gear being "allowed" is not the same as being "exempt". Some aggressively follow the policy to the letter...... others not at all. It likely varies from airport to airport as well. What really wicks me off is they ALL exempt golf gear. And some even state they will inspect golf cases to make sure there is only golf gear in it.
I checked it out and if I REALLY needed to I can use the compression straps on the Nomad to get it to 62". It cuts the capacity way down, but it's doable.
Here's my go-to case. Tuffpac weighing 19.7 lbs empty. Carry a scale to verify weights. One bow with all my gear. Carry packpack on plane with optics, camera, etc.
in practicality there is no company policy or airport policy there is the word that the baggage handler goes by. They will determine your fate. You can memorize policy off the website chapter and verse, but when you are told something different and you confront the person who you are entrusting you gear to with the "facts" just be aware you will not be the last person to see and touch that gear..............he or she will be.
I would not piss someone off to save 50.00 because you are right or you might end up in Colorado and your bow in London...............or you may open your case to see that somehow a string was cut.
nobody wants to be told how to do their job or worse yet that they don't know what their job is.
Keep bow case under 50# and you should be good to go. I use a SKB double bow model.
Prior to that I had a Pole Mountain double bow. I had to build a locking system for that case. SKB has airline locks.
SKB Double also. Live in Alaska but hunt Western states every year. Never had a problem.
Go skb or similar. Have had many guys in camp try to fly with a soft case or cheap plastic only to open the case and find a damaged bow. Skb are guaranteed forever and the I series has $1500 bucks worth of insurance to the contents. Can’t beat that.
We've used our SKB double bow cases for years, that said the Pole Mountain case is very interesting. Any idea where they can be purchased? Lancaster doesn't appear to carry them anymore..
Yup. Have flown many thousands of miles over the years..... never had an issue....
Until I had an issue...... Again, check the airline policy on oversize archery gear. If not wavered or exempted you are flying at their discretion. Or mercy..... whichever you prefer..... or just pony up the $200.... each way.... (see: American Airlines.)
SKB double Two bows plus clothing under 45lbs Africa 3x Newzealand Australia Newfoundland 3x Western USA xxxx Zero problems
Good posts...and good advice TD^
Its a whole new world now. Pair that with a DIY'ers need to get the necessary gear to a hunt and it can be challenging.
It can be done though, all camping gear, bow clothes and most food in my Nomad and a duffle for a DIY drop camp Moose hunt last year.
Now it turns out the transporter screwed us, we had to change gears last minute and we needed a packraft....but thats a whole different story.....
I have used a sitka nomad on about 20 flights since i got it. Its oversized per the dimensions, however i have yet to get dinged for it. I havent been over weight yet as thats the only thing they check every single time.
SKB double case for me too.
As above, mine haven't been measured either. Haven't had any issues on the few flights I've taken with it.
I use cheap $40 hard plastic gun and bow cases from Wal-mart when I fly. I've never had an issue with a scope losing zero even when I watched the liberal punk baggage minion slam my case down on the belt so hard it bounced twice.
Not sure this has been mentioned yet:
A hard SKB case just screams out "there's a gun in here" A soft rolling duffel looks like every other piece of luggage.
I chose the rolling duffel because I don't want to attract the attention of an anti-hunter/anti-gun wingnut handling my baggage.
SKB it rolls and as sportingequipment I have never had to pay oversize charges
Skb double labeled with “archery equipment inside”
I like any of the “soft” front cases. The sides and back are rigid. Like the badlands or Sitka nomads. There are Also a lot of non hunting mfg types of the same design that cost less. It doesn’t end up in the rifle section at baggage claim, doesn’t draw attention, And much lighter instead of using 20-25 of the Alowed 50 pounds up on the case.
I’ve had my Sitka Nomads all over North America and a trip to Africa with no issues. 11# of goodness empty.
Does the skb double bow fit a halon 6 very well?
Edit: I'm working in Panama City, FL still, so I can't measure.
Another idea: I was in a Play It Again Sports store recently (used sporting goods) and they had a couple of hard sided SKS Golf Cases for $89 each. They were having a half price sale at the time so you could have either for $45. I think they’d fit most compounds and a fair amount of clothes and gear and nobody would know it’s not golf clubs. Usually Golf Equipment gets a total pass.
Does Badlands still make them?
badlands does not make the terraglide anymore
Correct the new and improved Badlands Terraglide will be available by year end. I’ve got the first one coming my way:)
I probably have 12 to 15 flights with the sitka nomad, so far I haven't been hit with an over size yet. Bow and gear has arrived safe and sound each time. however with regs and money getting tighter for airlines I can see that changing in the future.
Went on a couple of longer in-Canada trips this fall with the Cabelas Ripcord XL and two bows inside in a soft case with a bunch of gear (padding) in it. I like it a lot and it is holding up very well over 25,000 miles of travel and many legs of travel. Ensure you know if the airline you are flying has a 50# or 70# weight limit. The Ripcord will haul 70#s easily but not if the airline won't fly it.
Those big hard sided cases are nice...but with the hard line 50# weight limit....a 20# case kills the amount of gear you can haul.
The Nomad style cases at 11#..................... let you add another 39# of gear.Thumbs up to that!
Yup Beendare is right, the soft-sided rolling duffels like the Ripcord XL can be shrunk down or expanded to take bulky stuff like a big sleeping bag, etc. And they don't weigh much...the Ripcord weighs in about 9#s or slightly lighter on my scale!
Sitka Nomad has worked well, never been charged oversize. Do watch the weight since it is easy to put a lot of stuff in it.
Also the aforementioned advantage of not having to be treated like its a firearm makes things a lot easier.
I guess the only risk is you can't lock it easily?
Two different round trips this year and the Legend Everest 40 has been perfect for me. It is right between the Sitka Nomad and Cabela's Ripcord, in both size and cost.
Ace: before buying a gold club case be sure that your bow will fit. The largest SKB gold club case wouldn't fit my bow because the case wasn't wide enough.
Used to use a SKB golf case but new bow won't fit in it so I now use Sitka Nomad and really like this bag!
sitka needs to get on the ball and redesign the nomad so its under the total airline requirement for oversized. I think that happens more guys will go to it.
I haven't checked size requirements recently, nor have I measured the size of the Nomad, but on my travels nobody even batted an eye and have not been charged oversize. Be certain you're under 50lbs though.
Yes the weight will get you.. havent seen a tape measure yet.