One vehicle, all gear. Suggestions?

Swiftkillswitch3

Junior Member
So, my band is in dire need of a vehicle to transport all of our gear at once. Any suggestions? It's gotta be reliable and large enough for ALL of our gear, so a double bass drum set, six guitars, pedals and pedal-boards, and three large amps. So, now that I've gotten the order of orders, any suggestions?
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
When I played in a band we used a full size Ford Econoline van. With the back seat removed, we could get all my gear (2 kicks, 5 toms, carpet, cymbal bag, tons of hardware, other misc. stuff), 2 half stacks, a bass rig with 2 18"s, all guitar and bass heads, pedals, rack effects, guitars, a cooler for food, and all 4 band members. It took some trial and error to make work, but if you are good at Tetris you should have no problems fitting it all in one full size van.
 

tamadrm

Platinum Member
Step vans are the work horse of the food/ice cream and delivery truck world.The sit low to the ground and have plenty of storange space,but,only two seats.so that involves a car for the band,unless you want to sit in the rear with the gear,which I'm certain is illegal.The vehicle reistration and title state how many seats are in the vehicle,so it may ONLY carry that many passengers.

You might also look into used school mini buses.

You might also want to look into a commercial drivers license,which may be required to drive this vehicle.Along with registration fees and other insurance fees,you're looking at a large monthly nut to feed.

Better look into the overall expences first.

Steve B
 
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nightraider43

Senior Member
I'd also say a Ford econoline step van. The ones you normally see HVAC (heating & air) companies using. You can find them relatively cheap used. Also can haul lighting around if your band ever invests in such. Shouldn't have no problems hauling all you mentioned and then some.
 

sonnygrabber

Senior Member
Years ago we got and converted an old airport shuttle-bus. Had those cool automatic opening hydrolic doors and tons of space. Four piece band, all the gear and could fit a few friends too. I think it was a Dodge, but don't really remember...it was about 20 years ago.
 

Pocket-full-of-gold

Platinum Member

New Tricks

Platinum Member
A trailer is what you want for gear.

FAR less buy in, insurance, license and maintenance. Get one tall enough to stand in. Get one bigger than you think you need. And, make the damn thing SECURE!!! Thrailers are also low to the ground for easy loading.Just run the hand truck up the ramp and into place.

Get a passenger van to pull it and carry personnel.

If you want a dedicated gear hauling vehicle, a box/cube van is what you need. Crawling into and stuffing that much gear into a standard sized cargo van is dumb.

We use 16' box vans at my business. They are around 30K new and well under 10K with 100K miles on them.






If you want the true rock and roll road trip experience, get the crappiest van you can find and spend a good portion of your youth trying to keep it running just enough to get from gig to gig while it catches on fire, loses it's headlights at night and leaks enough oil and transmission fluid to power a small village.
 
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keep it simple

Platinum Member
A trailer is what you want for gear.

FAR less buy in, insurance, license and maintenance. Get one tall enough to stand in. Get one bigger than you think you need. And, make the damn thing SECURE!!! Thrailers are also low to the ground for easy loading.Just run the hand truck up the ramp and into place.
This is the answer, for all the above reasons & more. Close to zero running/standing cost, & if bought used, very little depreciation too.

Here's my trailer. Real easy load in/out. Pictured here loaded with a pro touring 7K PA/2K monitoring, plus a full double truss lighting rig. On occasions, it's taken the full band rear line too, so fitting your rear line in would be a breeze. You'll be surprised just how much more room there is in a trailer compared to a van/truck of comparable size - mainly due to the low floor height.
 

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TColumbia37

Silver Member
As mentioned, I would opt for a trailer. My band uses a small, enclosed trailer, and it has more than enough room. We can easily fit our PA system, guitar amps, bass amp, and a drum kit with plenty of extra room to spare.
 

bonzolead

Platinum Member
Trailer is a great choice but me being a Chevy Guy a Chevy Express van or more economical route a Uplander (Mini Van) with the seats out. My bass player had a Dodge Caravan with the seats out and got my Drumset, 3amps a PA & the light show along with 3 guitars,pedals,cords etc. in it. you just have to be a good Tetris guy..lol

Good luck,
Bonzolead
 

longgun

Gold Member
The only hesitation I'd have with a trailer is how easy it is to steal.

It seems every few weeks there will be an ad on Craigslist, trying to recover a stolen band trailer.

I know in some states, a trailer isn't required to be registered, and doesn't require plates.............which makes it that much harder to track / recover

Personally, I'd look for an old church van or moving van or a small school bus.
 

tamadrm

Platinum Member
In NY state as well as other states,require License plates,registration and working brake,tail,turn signal an license plate lights.

The good news is where ever you and your towing vehicle are from,are what laws you're bound by.

So if you're from South Carolina,which dosen't require registration,and you are stopped in NY,you won't be in violation,since SC requires no plates or registration.

All states however require working tail,brake, turn signal and back up lights.

Steve B
 

FoolInTheRain

Senior Member
Can't go wrong with a trailer. Just need one of the band members to have a car or truck with a trailer hitch. I think that's the best option. Looks cooler too. Back when I was gigging, the thing to do was make a giant stencil with the band name or logo and spray paint it on.
 

New Tricks

Platinum Member
The only hesitation I'd have with a trailer is how easy it is to steal.

.
Easier than a van?

You can break a window, jam a screwdriver in the ignition and drive away in 30 seconds.

When you have a trailer, you need a lock on the hitch and, depending on the door latching system, maybe some extra security there. It also doesn't hurt to padlock a big chain thru the (spoke) wheels.
 

HarryJohnson

Junior Member
Have you thought about renting a vehicle? I have been a roadie for many years (and a drummer for more) and I know that buying the van you actually need is pretty much out of the question. But settling for some tatty old banger that will last a couple of months and break down at least once per journey is not the way to go, either.

Loads of dealers who sell new also sell used and also rent out vehicles, so ask about options.

If I was you I wouldn't buy from just anyone as chances are they needed it for similar reasons to you and are getting rid because it's not doing its job properly anymore.

What makes are you looking at? Any in particular?

Obviously transits are the most popular and generally reliable (despite 'white van man' reputation!). Think that would be big enough? if so can recommend a few models as have driven them a lot.
 
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