I have to say I’ve never been all that interested in binoculars. Strange, really, because they have a certain relationship with photography and I know that many photographers also appreciate a good bit of long-distance magnification, especially from the extensive Leica range.
But I do have an abiding interest in bags and my interest quickened when I received news of Billingham’s new Galbin range of bags. After conquering the camera field, Billingham is now set on becoming No.1 in binocular bags. I was also intrigued because I do warm to Billingham’s excellent PR machine under the direction of the ever-helpful and very capable Jenny Hodge. I first came across Jenny when she was at Leica and, as a former PR professional myself, I appreciate her efficiency and perfectly executed press material. But back to the bags…
The new Galbin range is made to the same exacting standard, and from the same materials, as the photographic bags we all know. The Galbin name was inspired by the astronomer, Galileo Galilei, the inventor of one of the earliest forms of telescope, combined with the word ‘binoculars’.
I had a chance to get my hands on examples at the Wex Photographic open day in London’s Commercial Road last Friday. I was chatting with Jenny and Billingham’s equally efficient and knowledgeable Denise Sutton, and it occurred to me that some of these binocular bags could accommodate a compact camera or, even, a small system camera such as the Leica CL with the 18mm or 23mm lenses. There’s absolutely no reason why you shouldn’t consider a Galbin bag but I recommend you find a retailer and try several models for size before you order.
Below you will find the full Billingham press release which gives you all the information you need if you are a keen binocular user.
Incidentally, I was very impressed with the extensive showrooms at the Wex flagship branch at 37-39 Commercial Road, E1 1LF. There’s a wide range of equipment, including Panasonic and Sony which I am particularly interested in, but sadly lacking Leica. It’s a good place to go for a browse around the large range of accessories and bags — and it is only a few steps away from the bustling Brick Lane market which is a magnet for street photographers.
Billingham focuses on the bigger picture with Galbin binoculars case range
Premium cases designed to carry and protect a wide range of full-size binoculars27 June 2018: Entering the bird watching, nature observation and optics industry for the very first time, Billingham has announced its Galbin binoculars case range. Designed to carry a wide variety of binoculars in 8×32, 8×42 and 10×42 sizes, these high-quality cases will be available for the first time at –Birdfair, Rutland Water, 17-19 August 2018.
Made in England at the West Midlands-based Billingham factory, the Galbin 8 and Galbin 10 are precision-engineered to offer the greatest level of protection for valuable optics equipment when travelling, out in the field or in transit. Each case is manufactured from premium Billingham materials and is fortified with a layer of high-grade foam padding. Two colour combinations will be available from launch: Sage FibreNyte with a full grain Chocolate leather trim, or durable Black Canvas with full grain Black leather trim.
Billingham FibreNyte and Canvas are both hard-wearing yet lightweight materials. They never require reproofing and remain moisture-resistant for the whole lifetime of the bag. FibreNyte is an ultra-rugged material that is colour-fast and delivers exceptional durability and protection against wear and tear.
These robust cases will be priced at £120 (Galbin 8) and £135 (Galbin 10) including VAT, and will be available from Billingham authorised stockists after the Birdfair exhibition.
Versatile enough to carry a range of equipment such as cameras, lenses and accessories, each Galbin case includes a comfortable, adjustable and detachable shoulder sling strap made of high-strength shuttle-woven material.
Incorporating Billingham’s Quick Release System, a strong leather strap with a solid brass ‘clogball’ fastener is positioned on the front of the bag to allow the owner to gain access to equipment, quickly and quietly, the instant it is needed. This flexible mechanism avoids the risk of disturbing the subjects being observed and allows rapid opening and closing with one hand for maximum convenience.
Two sturdy leather reinforced straps are secured by press studs on the back, which enable secure attachment to a belt for optimum portability.
Delivering ultimate protection from the elements, dust and moisture, each case features a contoured outer main flap, as well as an internal soft cover with drawstring cord fastener and secure toggle lock, affording additional defence against inclement weather conditions.
A handy slip pocket has been integrated into the design at the back of the main compartment, for the storage of rainguards, objective lens covers, notebooks, accessories or mobile phones.
Harry Billingham, director at M. Billingham & Co, said, “With 45 years of experience of manufacturing highly protective photographic, leisure and travel bags, we felt that our venture into the observation optics industry was a natural progression. Our increasing conversations with our customers around the world uncovered the suggestion to create such a product, and we now believe it’s the perfect time to enter the market.
“Whether travelling, carrying equipment between locations or when out in the field watching wildlife, it’s essential to keep valuable optics safe and secure. We designed our Galbin cases to be lightweight and comfortable to carry while offering easy access for the silent retrieval of binoculars at crucial moments. As with all our bags, they have been engineered from the most robust materials to deliver the greatest possible protection from wear and tear, accidental knocks and unfavourable weather conditions.”
The cases are manufactured at the company’s Cradley Heath facility and meet meticulous technical standards. Once they have passed Billingham’s strict quality controls, a laser-engraved woven label is added, containing an individual 10-digit barcoded serial number as part of the company’s Unique Identifier (UI) system, allowing the bag to be registered, identified and tracked throughout its life.
The Billingham Galbin cases come with a 5-year manufacturer’s guarantee.
More information on the Billingham range can be found at www.billingham.co.uk.
Billingham Galbin technical specifications:
The Billingham Galbin range will be available from Billingham stockists in the UK from August 2018.
For more information, please visit: www.billingham.co.uk
- Subscribe to Macfilos for free updates on articles as they are published
- Want to comment on this article but having problems?