Aluminum Case Co. (ACC) manufactures a comprehensive line of aluminum cases
engineered to meet the needs of the most demanding customer. Our stock cases
include carrying cases, bank cases, print cases, computer cases, footlockers, and
tool chests - all ready for immediate shipment. Custom Cases are also available.
What are the advantages of an aluminum case?
Aluminum is a structural material that is both lightweight and strong. It is typically 1/3 the weight of steel and unlike synthetic materials (plastic), it does not require ribs, gussets and/or bosses incorporated in the design of a case to derive strength. Aluminum alloy itself is strong, which results in a case that is smaller, lighter and stronger than alternatives intended to carry a comparable payload.
Other key advantages include:
- Aluminum’s remarkably high strength-to-weight ratio exceeds virtually all other case materials on the market.
- Aluminum is durable, resistant to impact damage, and well suited for applications where durability and performance are important requirements.
- Aluminum is resistant to corrosion and attack by most chemicals, dampens electromagnetic waves, and is an excellent choice for specialty case applications. It can also be painted or powder coated.
- Aluminum in environmentally friendly and 100% recyclable.
How do I determine the size of the case that I need?
Use the diagram below to reference the orientation of our case dimensions. Since the interior dimensions of our cases are nearly identical to the corresponding exterior dimensions (see following), all you have to do from here is select a case that will accommodate the size of the intended contents. Unless your contents are disproportionately heavy, if they will fit in one of our standard cases – most likely our case can easily accommodate the load.
If you are interested in a snug or custom tailored fit for your contents, possibly you should consider one of our foam interior options. Refer to Case Options for further information.
What makes an ACC case different from other aluminum cases on the market?
It’s simple. Our cases are really made from aluminum.
Most “aluminum” cases on the market today are not what they appear to be. These cases are manufactured with an aluminum channel frame that is used to house composite panels. The panels are often 3/16” plyboard painted or veneered to look aluminum-like in appearance. The result is a case comprised of various components (actually dozens) held together by glue, nails and rivets, which will not stand up to rigorous use.
Our cases begin with aircraft quality aluminum that is formed into the actual shell of the case. The aluminum alloys we use are so strong, a frame within the case independent from the case skin is simply unnecessary. Seams are riveted or welded depending on the case design, and then the unit is mated with high performance hardware. The result is a light weight, rugged case that is intended for continuous duty. And to top it off, the majority of our cases feature a full length continuous hinge for enhanced case rigidity and durability. Most case hinges on the market pale in comparison to ours.
Refer to Case Specs. for a comparison drawing of case construction details.
How does an ACC case compare to cases that feature an aluminum channel frame?
There really is no comparison. Cases manufactured using an aluminum channel frame and plyboard panels simply cannot match the performance of an ACC case whose shell is fabricated from aircraft quality aluminum. As an illustration, let’s take a look at a real world experience which we have not found uncommon.
Our office recently received a call from a company that manufactures and sells testing kits. The kits involve numerous items, including liquids, and the contents are heavy. When the company contacted us, they were using an “aluminum” case purchased from an overseas supplier (i.e. a case constructed with an aluminum frame and plyboard panels). The overseas case looked good but there was a problem. With limited use, it fell apart.
We took the company up on its offer, and accepted receipt of one of the problem cases. As it turns out, it was an off-the-shelf size of common frame/panel construction. As we developed a greater understanding of the intended case contents, we tweaked the size of one of our standard Style “C” designs and ultimately provided this company with a unit that was slightly larger than the overseas case – and undoubtedly, far more durable.
That’s was months ago, and the company is now enjoying the benefits of an ACC case program. We understand their requirements, and ship monthly. All cases are serialized, and while this company continues to receive failed overseas cases returned by its customers – not one ACC case has been reported to be problematic. And beyond our superior case quality, this customer would be the first to rave over our top notch customer service. They know that we are there to back them up, just a like a good business partner should.
Your website does not list the internal dimensions of your cases. Why? How can I calculate them?
It is not uncommon for the internal, usage space within a case to be far less than its external dimensions. For example, the actual carrying capacity of a typical plastic case is often found to be only 2/3 of its exterior size. The same is not true for an ACC case. The superior strength of our aircraft quality aluminum case shell negates the need for internal ribbing and/or reinforcement. The resulting case design yields internal dimensions that are virtually identical to the physical exterior size of the case.
In theory, the internal dimensions of an ACC case in any plane range from 5/64” to 5/16”less than their external counterparts. As a quick rule of thumb - simply consider the internal dimensions of one of our cases to be 1/2” less in each direction than their external counterparts. [Although in actuality, the interior useable space is slightly more]. For a more precise determination, simply give us a call and we’ll be happy to assist you.
And don’t forget the obvious – your cargo can be transported in an ACC case that is physically smaller in size than those made by others!
What is the ACC Rapid-Fire Prototype Program all about? Is it possible to get a sample of one of your cases, or possibly a prototype of a custom design? How long does it take?
As we say, aluminum cases are all we do and to remain an industry leader for over 60 years takes talent and flexibility. And that we have.
If you are working on a case design or a project that require a prototype – or possibly you find yourself under tight time constraints to satisfy a case (transport related) requirement, we invite you to give us a call. We are known for our rapid fire responsiveness, and if the circumstances dictate – we can produce and ship a custom case prototype in as little as 2 business days. If you’re under the gun, give us a call – we’re here to help and we’ll do what we can to meet your timeline.
Refer to Services for a complete discussion of the services we offer our customers.
Does ACC have a minimum order quantity?
No. We enjoy long-standing relationships with customers who initially contacted us to discuss a small order quantity. We are happy to work with all new customers, and remain confident that once you experience the performance characteristics of our cases, our business relationship will continue. Economics of scale, of course, affect all custom applications.
You promote your products as being made in the USA. What does that really mean?
It means what it says. We are an American company, and we are proud of it. All of our products are manufactured in our plant located in Chicago, IL. Major raw material categories and origin are as follows:
- Aluminum. All of the aluminum we use (100%) is material that was melted, rolled and processed within the USA.
- Case Hardware. We would like to say that 100% of the case hardware that we use on our cases is American made but that would be a slight exaggeration. As US manufacturing has shifted overseas, unfortunately, certain hardware components can no longer be sourced domestically. In response, we strive to source our case hardware from suppliers who manufacture in the USA, and in reality approximately 85% of the components we use originate domestically.
- Foam / Packaging Materials. All foam used within our cases, all cartons and all packaging materials that we consume (100% in the aggregate) are manufactured in the USA.
- Labor. All employees of ACC are US citizens or hold permanent residency status within the USA.
That’s why we say our products are made in America, and that’s as good as it gets.