Author Topic: New Tripod  (Read 2369 times)

armando_m

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #45 on: June 12, 2018, 14:45:33 »
The Vanguard tripod arrived from Amazon last night, and is being returned today.  The center column will not rotate at all. The quest to find a decent tripod continues! Albeit, with more than a little frustration on my part.
Talk about bad luck with a specific item, hopefully eventually you get a good one
Armando Morales
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Seapy

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #46 on: June 12, 2018, 17:59:34 »
This is an area where mail order falls flat on it's face.

You need to handle and get close up to tripods, although a simple thing,  they all have their own idiosyncrasies, features and foibles, not to mention all our expectations and needs are different.

Whenever I go into a camera shop I have a play with the tripods but to me they are all way too flimsy, the lightweight ones would blow over with the first puff of wind.  I love my surveyors tripod and the Benbo for it's versatility and robust construction.  The ability to withstand being stood on isn't part of my design criterion.  I am sure that's what happened to the broken Benbo leg.   >:(
Robert C. P.
South Cumbria, UK

ArthurDent

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #47 on: June 12, 2018, 18:59:41 »
This is an area where mail order falls flat on it's face.

You need to handle and get close up to tripods, although a simple thing,  they all have their own idiosyncrasies, features and foibles, not to mention all our expectations and needs are different.

Whenever I go into a camera shop I have a play with the tripods but to me they are all way too flimsy, the lightweight ones would blow over with the first puff of wind.  I love my surveyors tripod and the Benbo for it's versatility and robust construction.  The ability to withstand being stood on isn't part of my design criterion.  I am sure that's what happened to the broken Benbo leg.   >:(

You are certainly right about that! Unfortunately, I live in a smaller city and the last camera shop here closed about ten years ago. We have a Best Buy, but the selection is nothing to write home about, so I usually don't even bother to go inside unless I'm looking for a TV or some other item for which they have decent coverage. I think I'm stuck with Amazon and its ilk.

ArthurDent

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #48 on: June 13, 2018, 01:03:14 »
So, I made yet another purchase, this one from B&H, since Amazon insisted on charging me for shipping the defective item they sold me back to them. This time, I went up another notch in quality and price and bought this one:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/1332554-REG/vanguard_alta_pro_2_264ct.html

Carbon, slightly lighter than the aluminum tripod, slightly smaller and twice as costly. I hope this is it, it will be here Friday.

Akira

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #49 on: June 13, 2018, 05:52:41 »
Arthur, sorry about the failure of your second try.

For the similar usage of my normal size tripod, I purchased an Arca-Swiss multi purpose rail:

http://www.sunwayfoto.com/e_goodsDetail.aspx?gId=1274

I'm still waiting for the rail, but I'm going to attach its one side on my ballhead, and put another (smaller) ballhead on the other side.  I expect the whole rig to be like the Bembo tripod.
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ArthurDent

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #50 on: June 13, 2018, 11:05:09 »
Arthur, sorry about the failure of your second try.

For the similar usage of my normal size tripod, I purchased an Arca-Swiss multi purpose rail:

http://www.sunwayfoto.com/e_goodsDetail.aspx?gId=1274

I'm still waiting for the rail, but I'm going to attach its one side on my ballhead, and put another (smaller) ballhead on the other side.  I expect the whole rig to be like the Bembo tripod.

Akira- That is a great idea and I will keep it in mind if the third tripod is defective. Would you not also need to buy a short column if you wanted the ability to get close to the ground? Otherwise it would seem that the column would hit the ground if the tripod legs were splayed out unless the column was raised, which would defeat the whole purpose of the rail.

Birna Rørslett

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #51 on: June 13, 2018, 12:42:06 »
Any tripod with flexible legs has its minimum stability with the legs fully splayed. Putting something heavy directly on top of the splayed legs might help -- a loaded camera bag springs to mind.

Legs that lock at their upper end seemingly provides more rigidity, but this won't work well unless the surface is perfectly flat like an ice surface (and then the entire tripod will slide around unless you once again put something on it to arrest its movement). A raised mid column will always introduce instability so should be avoided if possible. If the design includes the centre column consider cutting it flush with a hacksaw. Getting a tripod without the column is better.

The likelihood of getting a defective tripod three times in a row is very low. Perhaps expectations as to performance don't match the reality of what those units can deliver?
Birna Rørslett

ArthurDent

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #52 on: June 13, 2018, 13:28:39 »
Any tripod with flexible legs has its minimum stability with the legs fully splayed. Putting something heavy directly on top of the splayed legs might help -- a loaded camera bag springs to mind.

Legs that lock at their upper end seemingly provides more rigidity, but this won't work well unless the surface is perfectly flat like an ice surface (and then the entire tripod will slide around unless you once again put something on it to arrest its movement). A raised mid column will always introduce instability so should be avoided if possible. If the design includes the centre column consider cutting it flush with a hacksaw. Getting a tripod without the column is better.

The likelihood of getting a defective tripod three times in a row is very low. Perhaps expectations as to performance don't match the reality of what those units can deliver?

Hi Birna-The first tripod (Benbo Trekker) was unstable with just slight, I would estimatel less than 1/2 pound, finger pressure applied to the column. This is in contrast to Seapy’s test using his own Benbo which indicated a much higher load capacity and much greater stiffness as well as the capacity to return to close to the original position when the load was removed, unlike my tripod which simply collapsed. So, I am confident my sample was defective. The second tripod (Vanguard Alta Pro 2+ 263at) came with a defective column pivot release which caused the column to be permanently locked in the upright position. So expectations had nothing to do with it, the tripods were defective. As to the probability of getting three bad tripods in a row, I hope you are right! The third one is on the way and due here this Friday. We shall see! I want to move ahead with my ir experimentation and I really can’t do it without a good tripod.

Birna Rørslett

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #53 on: June 13, 2018, 13:53:13 »
Sorry to hear about your experiences -- product control falls prey to austerity programs it appears?

I'm a long-standing user of Sachtler tripods for mange decades, smaller and bigger models yet none of which deserves to be called 'heavy' and none has ever failed. The oldest in current use must be from early '80s. These tripods "just work" and one largely forgets about their presence as they can be set up with such versatility in the field.
Birna Rørslett

Akira

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #54 on: June 13, 2018, 16:44:27 »
Akira- That is a great idea and I will keep it in mind if the third tripod is defective. Would you not also need to buy a short column if you wanted the ability to get close to the ground? Otherwise it would seem that the column would hit the ground if the tripod legs were splayed out unless the column was raised, which would defeat the whole purpose of the rail.

Arthur, I will receive the rail tomorrow, and post a report here in a few days.

I replaced the central hub of my Gitzo GT3530LS is a systematic model that has no central column.  So, it can be set almost flat by spreading the legs fully.  Also, I replaced its original central hub with Markins TH-300.

I'll post the image of the whole rig when I test the rail.
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ArthurDent

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #55 on: June 13, 2018, 20:25:37 »
Sorry to hear about your experiences -- product control falls prey to austerity programs it appears?

I'm a long-standing user of Sachtler tripods for mange decades, smaller and bigger models yet none of which deserves to be called 'heavy' and none has ever failed. The oldest in current use must be from early '80s. These tripods "just work" and one largely forgets about their presence as they can be set up with such versatility in the field.

Hi Birna- Your post inspired me to look at Sachtler tripods, and what I found was very nice, and very expensive! So, I fear the only way I will ever own one is if you leave  me one of your's in your will (PM me for details as to how to phrase the bequest ;D)!

Øivind Tøien

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #56 on: June 14, 2018, 06:09:19 »
Why not try the used market? Unless you "need" the latest and greatest in carbon fiber, with these kind of tripods being nearly indestructible, it should be low risk as long as they come with all the parts. For instance I quickly found this one:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/Sachtler-DA-75L-Single-Stage-Tripod-Aluminum-Legs/192211104142?hash=item2cc0acb18e:g:X1oAAOSw9~5ZOKrf

(Personally for easy transport I have always felt the crown of the Sachtler type tripods would take too much space when travelling but I have admittedly never handled the smaller ones - I usually stuff my small modified Gitzo 120 Sport unpadded along the side inside my big hiking backpack. Of course that is a reason Sachtler type tripods are so stable - tripods are always compromises).

Also there is a pretty good supply of used Gitzo sport/performance aluminum tripods that could be a good starting point to remove center column and saw off anything that supports it to minimize weight etc - they then usually allow legs to spread all the way out. It would only need a wide washer and a short bolt to attach the head directly to the platform. Red Locktight and Epoxy are good helps to make the crown joints (permanently) not keep coming apart and prevent upper segment of the legs to unscrew. Then if you work in the cold apply bicycle handlebar cork tape to the upper leg section to make handling really comfortable without taking a lot of space. One thing I would have liked though is the twist lock feature on the legs that had not been introduced in these generations of tripods.

Øivind Tøien

Seapy

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Robert C. P.
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Øivind Tøien

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #58 on: June 14, 2018, 23:15:48 »
Any opinions on this one...

https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Gitzo-Tripod-Very-large-old-school-aluminium-tripod-geared-column/192564773314?hash=item2cd5c141c2:g:Hb0AAOSwjh5bFDSl

Nothing I can't fix...

Not sure as it is covered by tape, but it seems to be the cheaper series (or perhaps too old) that does not have the adjustable leg locks. So it might require some mechanical work to spread the legs very wide, and then without any way to lock them. Low cost, but shipping costs are high...
Øivind Tøien

Seapy

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Re: New Tripod
« Reply #59 on: June 14, 2018, 23:51:19 »
Thanks Øivind, could probable do something about the spread, although for low work I prefer the Benbo...

What about the telescopic leg extender locks, they seem to be the loose olive type, I have never considers that type to be very robust, unlike the over centre cam clamps with non telescopic legs, which I think Birna's tripods mostly are.
Robert C. P.
South Cumbria, UK