Building the Taj MaHAUL, Part III

Taj MaHAUL II PortableThe “Taj MaHAUL I” mobile con box has two key failings. First, neither bin is big enough to accommodate the three-foot long banner stands (which must be carried on top or separately.) Second, it is neither secure nor flexible enough to fly with should the need arise. It was clear to me that a new way to think this through was required, a self-contained design long enough for the stands, secure and flexible enough to travel, still portable to move about, and relatively inexpensive to create.

So now I am in the process of finishing the Taj MaHAUL II “portable.” As it turns out, Walmart sells a padded, tear-resistant golf club case travel bag (for around $35) that’s long enough for the banner stands (12 inches by 12 inches by 40 inches.) It also zips completely to secure with a single TSA lock to allow it through airport baggage claims. Besides the stands and banners, the inside is equipped with up to four multi-pocketed carry-on bags with crafting tools (scissors, tape, etc.) and non-electronic display parts. While there is an extension cord in the bag, I keep any electronics (netbook, speakers, iPad) in a laptop bag with me. Oh, and it’s a roller bag, too.

So far, the entire thing has managed to come in under 50 pounds fully loaded, which means if you fly Southwest like I do, that’s a free-flying second checked bag.

Building the Taj MaHAUL, Part II

Taj MaHAUL ISomething I didn’t update here was when I completed my original “Taj MaHAUL.” With the ideas started in Part I of this idea, I needed something with storage, easy to break down and travel with, and easy to move in and out of a convention haul. Anyone who has been in marketing or had to travel with a display system knows what I’m talking about. In addition, I also needed an on-board crafting kit: scissors, tape, stapler, pens, paper, first aid kit, whatever.

The result is pictured here: the Taj MaHAUL I. Two medium sized and stackable plastic bins on a modified furniture mover with a removable handle. Inside is a series of smaller bins and bags with everything needed to set up a display. I’ve used it for a couple years now, and it has served me well (the bin is large enough to move a 20-inch LCD computer monitor if required.) The look on other presenters faces as I’ve easily brought this in, set everything up, and easily took everything away has been both amazing and hilarious, but it’s just the way I think.