Fusion Urban Double Concert / Tenor Ukulele Gig Bag - REVIEW | GOT A UKULELE - Learn Ukulele, beginners tips and reviews

7 Aug 2016

Fusion Urban Double Concert / Tenor Ukulele Gig Bag - REVIEW

It was some time ago that this gig bag brand launched their products in the UK. I was lucky enough back then to review a pre-launch version of their premium tenor ukulele gig bag. Since then, Fusion have gone from strength to strength and I was delighted when they recently contacted me asking me to take a look at their new Urban Double Gig Bag.

fusion urban double ukulele bag


You may recall from that review of the premium tenor bag that I was incredibly impressed at the quality of the item. Superb craftsmanship and just a wonderful product. I did think however that it was slightly too expensive for many, but know that since Fusion have filled various other price points with offerings for ukulele players. This double bag, under their 'Urban' range is actually really keenly priced I think for what you are getting. That is to say it's £120 for something handmade in England and offering a lot of features.

The bag is a soft gig bag type case, meaning it isn't totally solid. So whilst not a case that will provide crushing protection it's more a lifestyle case as you will see. Actually, a quick word about fully hard cases. Many people assume they will provide ultimate crusing protection (ie, being trodden on or driven on). Unless you have gone with an ultra high end hard case from only one or two manufacturers, the majority of hard cases won't actually offer this protection. Put it this way, I own a few and would not want to test them out by standing on them. And I say that because I have seen a few examples of 'hard case snobbery' out there. The people who say 'oh I will only trust a hard case' when the fact is, for going to and from busks, club nights etc,  a padded bag will do a perfect job.

In fact a padded bag will tend to offer many advantages over hard shell cases such as pockets, shoulder straps and the like, so for many, practicality is just as important as protection.

fusion urban double ukulele bag zips


So on to this case, as I say it's soft, but it IS extremely heavily padded inside. In fact it has an outer rim of 2cm of high density foam within a rugged thick rip stop polyester outer. Add to that the plethora of rubberised bump strips and edging and this is one tough and rugged case. I'd happily rely on it for protection for pretty much anything I can think of in my own life.

fusion urban double ukulele bag bottom compartment


But the real trick to this model is the double compartment inside the thing. This will hold (as a maximum) two full scale tenor ukuleles, but thanks to a range of shaping inserts to the compartments, you can mix and match the space, so perhaps one tenor and one concert, or even down to two sopranos if you wanted. I think with some judicious packing you could probably get about four sopranos in this if you wanted to (and certainly lots of Nanos!). In addition both compartments hace neck support rests with velcro ties to keep your instruments ultra stable. Now that is great in itself, but the bonus I actually saw to the double compartment is for the festival going ukulele player who likes to travel light. You see that other compartment could EASILY carry a change of clothes and toiletries for a weekend, leaving the other compartment to carry your ukulele. Th perfect backpackers ukulele bag perhaps? Or perhaps you busk - you could easily carry a ukulele, music stand, cables and small battery amp like a Roland Mobile Cube in this bag (trust me, I tried it!)

fusion urban double ukulele bag top compartment


And that would mean nothing if it didn't actually work as a comfortable backpacking bag. Thankfully though it comes with really nicely padded and adjustable shoulder straps (complete with chest strap and waist strap) meaning this really does feel more like a walkers backpack than a mere ukulele case. It even comes with a fold out rain cover and numerous eyelets on the front for adding bungees or strapping extra gear to the front.

fusion urban double ukulele bag rain cover


Elsewhere on the bag you have two generous accessory pockets, (the largest of which also has an inner zippered security pocket), an extremely rugged rubberised and riveted handle, a top grab handle and  tough zips. And if there is ONE THING I cannot stand, it's cheap zips..

fusion urban double ukulele bag carry handle


And the quality of the manufacture really shines through. These are not hastily put together with loose stitching  and flimsy zips, and every inch of it feels tough and well made. Add in a two year warranty and you shouldn't be too worried in any case!

fusion urban double ukulele bag shoulder straps


If it sounds like I am waxing lyrical about this bag, it's because I truly like it. In fact, I will stick my neck out and say that in my book, Fusion are making the best and most practical gig bags around. If you of the 'hard case only' type, you probably won't like this (or perhaps stopped reading). But I do think you should seriously re-assess what your needs really are. I'd happily tour, travel or gig with one of these and in fact, I know that Sarah Maisel and Craig Chee undertook their UK and European Tour (all the way from the USA) with these bags carrying anything but low end instruments. In fact, there are many professionals using them. Want more names? How about Phil Doleman, Manitoba Hal Brolund, Zoƫ Bestel, Andrew Molina and many more...

fusion urban double ukulele bag accessory pocket


So for just over £120 for a bag that will safely carry multiple instruments, or perhaps an instrument plus your kitchen sink, what's not to like?

Highly recommended.

https://www.fusion-bags.com






2 comments :

  1. Thanks for the review. I had been looking for something like this for a while and finally bought this one based on your feedback. I have to say it is very well made and I have no fears toting my Mya-Moe and custom built concert around in it. It is perfect for weekend trips to the in-laws or to a festival. The only down side I have seen to it is that it is just massive and awkward. This is not a knock on the design. You take two tenor ukulele cases and strap them to your back it is going to massive and awkward. You just don't realize how big this thing is until I pulled it out of the box. I also don't think it would conform to the US standard for overhead luggage so you would most likely need to check it if flying and that would scare the crap out of me (soft OR hard case).

    Anyway, I'm happy with the purchase so thank for the review.

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  2. Got my Guilele (longer than a tenor) in one part and my clothes (for 4 days) in the other. Easy jet see it as cabin baggage as its an instrument case so job done in a trip to the Netherlands. Good on easy jet..don't often hear that now.

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