JB 2x3 Rugged Leather Hybrid Gonzo Diver Case

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
(Review split over 3 posts due to character count limit per post)

Last year I received my custom JB 4x8 butterfly cue case (see review here). It is a great case which I really love. I get a lot of compliments on it, and recognition from other JB case owners. That case has tons of room for everything I would ever want or need. As I predicted though, I am finding it to be a bit cumbersome and overkill for some of the locations I frequently play. Even though it is very compact for a 4x8 case, there are some nights where it does not fit the venue having a bit more bulk than I want, so I just grab my 1x1 and go. Two problems; I have gotten spoiled with JB’s protection and I like my break cue a lot. Solution; a JB Rugged 2x3.

I wanted to post a review for my newest JB Case for multiple reasons. I am excited and proud of this case and how it came out. I wanted to show it off to my peers, hoping others will find it just as cool as I do. I also want people that are unfamiliar with JB Cases to know why they are different and worth it. When I started playing, I didn’t understand why anyone would spend a lot on a case unless it was quality leather case. After having experienced other cases and gaining more knowledge about what is going on inside the case, I have become a cheerleader for JB’s product. I think they have a high-quality case that excels in protection and comfort. They are focused more on customer satisfaction than mass producing generic cases. The case is amazing by itself, but then the level of customization for whatever you dream up pushes it over the top. Another great point is the lifetime guarantee. For me a lifetime guarantee is less about replacing a broken case in the future, and more about a company building a product well enough that there is little chance it will give me trouble or need to be replaced.

Like an A-10 Warthog, that took a super gun and built a solid functional plane to go around it, JB Case made a super interior and built a great case around it. I really care a lot about my cues and want to keep them nice. I invested a lot of time and money to get the cues I have. They are not high-end customs, but by my standards I have a lot of dollars and sentiment invested in them. John Barton’s passion for his company and products moved me to research further, and then purchase my first JB case from him. That case reached my expectations and more, so it was a no brainer to have JB Cases make this 2x3 case.

I know that I could have just gotten a basic JB Rugged case and happily get my cues to-and-fro safely, but where is the fun in that? Will this case make me a better player? No, so why bother with all this custom stuff? Because I can, it makes me feel good, and I like unique and weird, so off I went to the designer on the JB Cases website and started playing around with some ideas.

Had some basic rules at first:
  • 2x3 Rugged.
  • This case is the baby brother of my Gonzo Diver Butterfly, so it had to have my Dad’s artwork incorporated again.
  • Black with Purple accents.
  • The magnetic puzzle latch flip lid. No zipper! I think it’s a genius idea.
I put together my ideas on the designer to get an approximate look and price. I had a good direction, but all of my ideas could not be done well with the designer yet. The designer is great tool for making standard cases with minor customizations, but with all the modifications I wanted, it didn’t really give a great visual. I moved to a photo editor and started cropping image pieces from the JB Cases website in order to puzzle them together into what was in my head. In the end I decided to go with a Rugged Hybrid leather/nylon 2x3 with a magnetic flip lid. I am surprised more people don’t choose this lid option. It is common on the full leather cases, but it was harder to find examples on the rugged or hybrid style.

Now I could see it better and I give JB a clearer idea of what I wanted. JB hit the mark!

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Other features:
  • Same leather side handle as is on my butterfly case. It is super comfortable, streamlined, and looks great.
  • I like the clean look of no top handle on the smaller case, and it really isn’t necessary on this size case anyway.
  • I went with a single back strap. On a smaller case one is all that is necessary for my normal needs, and I can add a second one if at any time it may be needed later.
  • The Hybrid leather feature for lid, pockets, and bottom.
  • The top pocket is a magnetic pocket. I No zippers makes it quick and easy to use for joint protectors and such.
  • Middle pocket is basically a normal top entry pocket I can use for my custom cue rest.
  • I decided not to have one long bottom pocket and split it into two.
  • The upper pocket is a small pocket to keep my chalk separate.
  • The bottom pocket is book style and will be my junk drawer for whatever is left.
  • Part way through I asked to have a towel ring added. Since it was not fully assembled yet they were happy to add it on.
 
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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Magnetic Lid Latch
Lid View.png


Artwork:
  • Gonzo Diver: Old nickname and profession, and it is based on a picture my Dad drew for me (see butterfly review ).
  • J. Pechauer Logo: I love their cues and I like how the logo looks on my 1x1 case.
  • Starman 2112: What can I say, Rush is the best band ever, and still not tired of listening. RIP Neil.
  • Evil Tentacle: Just some nostalgia from my past. Maybe you recognize it, maybe not.
  • Jogger: The main character from the first “real” computer program I ever wrote (1984).
The artwork on the main body is embroidered. The stitching is tight, detailed and beautiful. With less real-estate to work with the Gonzo diver is scaled down a little smaller compared to my 4x8, but still looks great.

The artwork on the leather pockets and the magnetic lid latch was originally planned to be tooled, but the images had too many small details to look right so we went with laser printing. Excellent work to all.

Artwork View.png



My own personal modifications:
  • I plan to hang this case from a hook just like my butterfly. The butterfly is not really designed to stand up on its own, and who wants it on a dirty bar or pool hall floor. After having my Q-Claw stolen I decided to build my own cue rest . I incorporated a case hook into its design, so not only does the weight of the case hold the cue rest more securely, it makes it much harder to steal. Even though the rugged style case can stand up on its own, I still see people’s cases knocked over on the floor. Also, the 2x3 has a small footprint, so I will still be using the case hook for the same reasons. In order to let the top of the case clear the bottom of the table, I made a small extension out of an old nylon strap from my diving days and some titanium keychain parts to attach to the D-ring on the back of the case. It is strong and super lightweight.
  • If you like the idea of hanging your case from a table, or whatever, I highly recommend a Clipa2 When I am not using my cue rest, I can still keep the case off the floor with this little gadget. It stays clipped to my backpack strap for a quick hang off anything. I’ve also hung it off the back of a chair with this clip and kept the cues butt first in the case so nothing touches the floor and keeps the cues secure.
  • I am adding a molle pouch to the backpack strap to keep some things that I like to have quick, easy access to.
  • Although I could have just bought the Velcro addon mesh accessory pockets from JB Cases I decided to try making my own while I was waiting for the case to be made. I figured if I failed, I could still order them later.
Mod View.png


Hanging from cue rest
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Using Clipa2 to hang from chair and hold cues

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Bonus: I had a challenge coin made to compliment the theme of the case. I also had leather sleeves made for a pint glass and one for a bottle.

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Everything has its place. The cue rest fits perfectly in the first big pocket. The chalk has its own private quarters. And the bottom is organized with mesh pockets and Velcro straps so everything stays in place when I open it up while still vertical. The molle pouch has tip and shaft tools as well as eye drops and the challenge coin.
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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Conclusion:

Big Surprise! I love this case. It is a well-built case, protects my cues, looks really nice, and is uniquely mine. No question this is my case. One of the things that really appeals to me is the solid, but still slick and clean look of the case. After looking at some cases from other makers I realized some cases have a lot of big rivets which for me, takes away from the look of the case. JB rarely has any showing.

The leather has a great feel to it, nice and soft. The lid opens and closes quick and easy, but at the same time it stays closed and secure.

The leather handle is as comfortable as my other case and its low profile gives the case a cleaner look.

The top magnetic pocket is perfect for the joint protectors. Easy access while juggling the cue and protectors.

The other pockets perform just like pockets should. The upper big pocket has a top entry, so I can easily drop the cue rest into without worry of it falling out. The bottom pocket opens book style for easier access to the miscellaneous items stashed inside and are organized with the dividers and mesh pockets I made. The little pocket between them is the “dirty” pocket to keep the chalk, holder and spares separate.

The back pack strap is superior to the other cases I have (except the other JB of course). It is comfortable and doesn’t slip off my shoulder with every slight movement.

The UltraPad interior is awesome. The cues slide in and out easily, but stay very secure and safe. Being able to remove the interior is a great feature for maintenance or replacement if needed.

Now I have a case when I want extra cues and the kitchen sink, and I have one for just my player and break that will be more comfortable to work with in smaller settings. The pictures speak for themselves. It may not be your cup of tea, but I am beyond pleased.



Front Back View.png


Case w-Display.png


Case and Cues 1.png


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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
With the scuba diving theme, I am almost a bit surprised you didn't go with a mini pressure gauge for the magnetic lock mechanism :LOL:

Good idea but I probably would have gone with a dive flag shaped latch, but diving isn't really the overall theme. The theme is simply a tribute to me ;)

It is a potpourri of me, highlighting some of my interests and personality. Gonzo is a nick name, I ran and owned a dive shop for 20 years. I like purple. Rush has been my main jam (Wow Rush just came up now on the radio as I'm typing). I started teaching myself coding in the 80's and has been my profession since I sold the dive shop. ...etc.

Thanks for checking it out.
 

chenjy9

Active member
Good idea but I probably would have gone with a dive flag shaped latch, but diving isn't really the overall theme. The theme is simply a tribute to me ;)

It is a potpourri of me, highlighting some of my interests and personality. Gonzo is a nick name, I ran and owned a dive shop for 20 years. I like purple. Rush has been my main jam (Wow Rush just came up now on the radio as I'm typing). I started teaching myself coding in the 80's and has been my profession since I sold the dive shop. ...etc.

Thanks for checking it out.

In that case, you absolutely nailed it. You have a truly unique, wonderful looking case that actually functions as awesome as it looks. Mine is so boring looking compared to some of you guys' creativity. LOL
 

SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
Update: Still an awesome case!

One thing that bothered me a little is that when using the side handle, the shoulder strap hangs down low. Only a slight annoyance, but now with the molle pouch weighing the strap down it increased the annoyance factor a lot.

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I came up with an idea today that I believe will solve my problem. I was was thinking about clips or straps and how to make it work without making the fix annoying too. Then I started thinking about magnets. I remembered I had a magnetic breakaway coupler in my diving stuff that might just be what I was looking for.

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It breaks apart easily when I want to use the shoulder strap. Get the parts near each other and they lock in holding the strap very secure. This keeps the strap up and out of the way streamlining the case when carrying it with the handle.

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Problem solved: Still an awesome case!

.
 
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SSDiver2112

2b || !2b t^ ?
What is problem solver CALLED, and where did you find❓❓

I looked up the company I used to sell in my shop, but it looks like they no longer sell it.

I did find it on ebay as a whole assembly that you could use the parts.


Another option I saw was this. Don't know the strength but it or something like it may work. Walmart
 
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