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Case Review: Plano (Walmart)

Dec 14, 2010
I really had a debate with myself about where this should go - I didn't see a general hardware forum, and it's not "directly" laser related however I figured some folks might have some benefit of this review.

Anyway, you can view the original here:

Laser Product Review Blog

For the forum post, keep reading...

Plano Walmart Adjustable Case

The first review I'm doing is of the Plano series case. This case has been designed to be used for multiple/various things, but obviously my intention is to hold my lasers, and keep them away from prying eyes/hands/roommates-who-shouldn't-touch-my-stuff.

I purchased this at Walmart, and I actually stumbled across it by accident. They had it on sale for 14.97 (Everyday low price right?) and so I tossed it into my cart with the idea that it's one less thing for me to get later on.

The first thing that I notice is that it's pretty cheaply made. If someone ACTUALLY wanted to get into this thing, they could easily break into it. I think it's more of the illusion of preventing people from going into it, and with two basic locks, it'll keep the honest people honest.

And since a picture is worth a thousand words, I'm going to just toss in a few pics here first.

So besides it's obviousness cheapness, it actually looks kind of reasonable for a cheap case.

The locks themselves are hardly groundbreaking, but again - keeping honest people honest here. They do 'work' in that they're going to prevent the case from opening, but again, nothing that someone who's intent on breaking in won't be able to maneuver past without much hassle.

In addition to the locks themselves, there's also some nice reinforcement happening on the actual hinge itself, assuming it's a "just in case" the hinges break... Your stuff won't go smashing all over the place.

The added benefit here too is that it will keep the case open at a 90 degree angle, so when you're taking out your plutonium.... errr... Laser out, you don't have to worry about the stuff flying everywhere.

On the flip side, you always have to worry about it closing on you too. Up to the user if it's a benefit or not at this point.

Looking at the bottom, there are four hard rubber feet that are obviously meant to depict the bottom of the case, but also gives you a nice protective barrier between your bottom surface such as a kitchen table and the case itself.

But enough about the outside - what about the inside?

What you're looking at isn't the default configuration, but there are basically a limited number of ways you could have this configured. I guess for the most part, if you plan on carrying like a gaming console, it'll work well enough to separate controllers from the system, but for what I want to do with is, it's not quite going to work.

What I plan on doing eventually is actually getting some eggshell foam and putting it along the top, and then getting a slightly harder foam and putting it along the entire inside so I can custom-cut out spots for each laser as I get them, as well as battery charger/batteries.

An interesting addition they had was a sort of pouch that is attached to the top - I can't see that being very useful for what I'm doing with it, but different users are going to have different intentions behind the use of the product. I suppose you could put some smaller handhelds in there, maybe some little pointers, accessories or batteries.

The separators themselves were bendy, and flexible, but I didn't get the impression that they were meant to take any actual amount of weight. With that being said, they would work completely fine as separators, but not for actually holding anything in place when push came to proverbial shove.

- Lightweight
- Looks decent
- Reinforced Hinge
- Dual locks
- Rubber feet
- Extra pouches affixed to the top

- Locks are easily broken/picked
- Separators are flimsy
- Wouldn't protect against a fire, or someone who really wanted to get in

Overall, having paid less than 15$ for it, I can definitely see it being a worthwhile case that will provide some basic protection and security for my lasers. I wouldn't travel with it anywhere involving a plane, and I certainly wouldn't rely on it to keep out things like fire or thieves. It'll do exactly what it's meant to do, and that's to hold stuff.

And for 15$, you can't really expect much more than that.