Author Topic: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.  (Read 1055 times)

Derek of Venango

  • NG Supporter
  • **
  • Posts: 44
  • You ARE NikonGear
Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« on: October 18, 2018, 02:50:28 »
Hello team. I ask for your help in choosing between Door #1 and Door #2.  The good news is that behind both doors are Sachtler leggy pups.

Bjorn R. has me convinced on Sachtler legs, but which exact one is the question.  I'm patiently waiting on a sale from B&H and want to be prepared to pull the trigger when they do.

My application will be still photography utilizing Really Right Stuff BH-55 ball and Wimberley II gimbel heads. Current bodies include Nikon D750  & D200. The longest lenses I have are Nikon 70-200 f/2.8 VR 1 and 200-500 f/5.6 VR. I also have access to the Tamron 150-600 G2. I don't see myself buying 10K exotic glass at this point, but I've learned to never say never. :o I feel sure my Gitzo GT2530 is far to light duty for the long glass.

I believe I have it narrowed down to the following two Sachtler models: DA100L  and  DA100 ENG 2D. I am ok with aluminium vs carbon for $$$ reason but know it won't conform to the highest level of point #6 below!  I am a bit more drawn to the DA-100L due to single stage legs. However I am open to real world seasoned suggestions.

My questions center around performance and ergonomics: 1. Any inherent advantage in how the legs join at the base plate. 2. The widths of the crutches at both ends- do they matter between the two?  3. The tube diameters are the same correct? 4. The feel, adjustment ease and purchase between lever lock and rotary clamp? 5. Versatility- how close to the ground when legs are fully splayed? And lastly, the big one, 6. Torsional stiffness and vibration dampening?

Also, what will I need to fit the heads to the 100 mm bowl?

Thank you much and I hope I didn't abuse my first post.

Derek


BillO

  • NG Member
  • *
  • Posts: 49
  • Cruising the US in a Motorhome
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #1 on: October 18, 2018, 05:34:01 »
I too followed Bjorn's advice, but settled for the DA75L (older) version so cannot answer all your questions, but some.  As an aside, I find the the slightly smaller 75 series perfectly adequate for my Nikkor 200-500.

On the single stage vs 2 stage extensions -- it depends on your intended use.  Mine is the single stage and the collapsed length is a more than a bit of a pain to carry hiking through the woods and fields for my type of nature/landscape photography.  Conversely, in my opinion it is more solid as more joints almost always lead to more flexibility.

As far as damping, the carbon fiber version will have more damping but it is not clear to me if it would be substantial.  I really don't believe that there is much difference in torsional rigidity as that is dictated more by geometry than material (at equivalent strength levels).

My version has the rotary clamping mechanism which I find far superior to lever locks on other tripod brands, but cannot compare with Sachtler's levers.  They are quick to deploy and adjust for uneven ground and hold well without too much torque.

I suspect that the DA75 has the same joinery at the base as the DA100 which I find quite adequate, allowing the legs to splay out nearly horizontal so that I can get down to about 12 inches off the ground (including ball head).

To save a little bit on mounting my ball head I bought a Manfrotto bowl adapter that provides a stable base for that ball head.  The equivalent for your interest would be:

https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/553991-REG/Manfrotto_500BALL_500BALL_100mm_Ball_Leveler.html


ps.  welcome

Regards,
Bill Oliver

Bruno Schroder

  • NG Supporter
  • **
  • Posts: 1056
  • Near Waterloo, Belgium
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #2 on: October 18, 2018, 07:31:18 »
Same for me, following Bjorn's advice and using mostly the DA75L up to 400mm(80-400 and 400/5.6 AIS). I also have the eng 100 carbon but I'm using it mostly in low light with a 500mm AI-P or when I need the Wimberley.

The 75 is the single stage version, a bit long for hicking but still possible on the side of the backpack. I'm using a 75mm Manfrotto bowl adapter and the Acratech Ultimate ball head.

I'm quite satisfied with this setup for macro and wildlife.
Bruno Schröder

Birna Rørslett

  • Global Moderator
  • **
  • Posts: 1462
  • A lesser fierce bear of the North
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #3 on: October 18, 2018, 08:32:09 »
The 100mm bowl Sachtlers are frankly overkill for the intended relatively light lenses. A two- or three-stage  75mm model would suffice. I have, and use, a range of 75 and 100mm bowl models. The 100mm models in carbon fibre are nice to bring with you in a car, but I wouldn't want to carry them far in the field mainly due to their bulk (weight is no problem as they are featherweights as far as tripods go).

Personally my most used Sacthler is a cut-down 75mm DA75; shortened so it will fit inside a standard suitcase for air travel.

Derek of Venango

  • NG Supporter
  • **
  • Posts: 44
  • You ARE NikonGear
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2018, 22:04:55 »
Thank you Bill, Bruno and Birna for excellent feedback. And Birna, interesting that you used a word that I am more easily given to- overkill! I do expect to use the tripod mostly from my pack mule (Volvo xc70) with occasional jaunts of up to a half mile in open country, especially for elk here in Central PA.

Seapy

  • NG Member
  • *
  • Posts: 756
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #5 on: October 19, 2018, 08:59:49 »
I know mine is not a Sachtler tripod, but these comments may be pertinent, I use a Stabila aluminium surveyors tripod, a remnant of my construction activities.

With a small Manfrotto video head and my own lathe turned adaptor, it's about 1200mm long collapsed and just won't lie across the back, inside my car without removing the head, which accounts for ~ 200mm.  I don't consider it heavy @ 5.5Kg with head.  I regularly carry it up to a mile up a very steep hill from the car for star trail photography from a good vantage point.  I just pop it on my shoulder and go!  I like the weight and the ability to kick the spokes about 75mm into the ground, which give a much more stable mount than standing a 'normal' tripod on the surface grass or other softish top layer of ground.

It actually doesn't quite feature in my current avatar... Using a ball head instead of a video head I was taking photographs from an old wartime Observer Corps observation tower, about a mile from the nearest road.

The legs only have single extension which I feel adds to the stability, also I find the multi extensions of more compact tripods and monopods a pain to have to extend (and collapse) multiple telescopic tubes, especially tripods with three times the number that a monopod enjoys.
Robert C. P.
South Cumbria, UK

Erik Lund

  • Global Moderator
  • **
  • Posts: 4837
  • Copenhagen
    • ErikLund.com
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #6 on: October 19, 2018, 09:54:46 »
#1 Was discussed here to great detail,,,


http://nikongear.net/revival/index.php/topic,7235.0.html
Erik Lund

Derek of Venango

  • NG Supporter
  • **
  • Posts: 44
  • You ARE NikonGear
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #7 on: October 20, 2018, 04:50:10 »
Yes Robert, your comments are certainly valid and useful to me. Especially the last sentence.

Thanks Erik. I'm still ruminating on that thread; I am not Engineering material. :D  I read it some time back (forgive the pun) but I guess it did'n resonate with me.  Part of what made me ask #1 was why the "Eng" tripods have legs that attach in a bracket like manner at the bowl base, whereas the DA100 has more of a mortise/tenon joinery. Is there any inherent advantage to either or is it six of one, half a ...? Perhaps Bjorn has insight here.

Birna Rørslett

  • Global Moderator
  • **
  • Posts: 1462
  • A lesser fierce bear of the North
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #8 on: October 20, 2018, 08:49:37 »
'Bjørn' has ceased to exist, but I can answer.

Basically what you have observed, and described, are the two engineering solutions to the same problem of maximising stability and concurrently minimising weight, constrained by required bowl size. Both act as hinges to the legs.

Derek of Venango

  • NG Supporter
  • **
  • Posts: 44
  • You ARE NikonGear
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #9 on: October 20, 2018, 15:57:47 »
Got it! My apology for being obtuse Birna.

In tennis terms then "Love All", as neither design achieves better intended output.

Seapy

  • NG Member
  • *
  • Posts: 756
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2018, 17:24:47 »
Given stiff enough legs I see the stability relies on the quality and precision of the engineering for the leg hinges.  The wider the top hinge the less precision needed but the result has to be heavier.

I think it's an area where top quality can be quite expensive but worthwhile as a long term investment.
Robert C. P.
South Cumbria, UK

Birna Rørslett

  • Global Moderator
  • **
  • Posts: 1462
  • A lesser fierce bear of the North
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #11 on: October 20, 2018, 17:32:16 »
I have used the same Sachtler(s) for more than three decades. Which testifies to their longevity.

Derek of Venango

  • NG Supporter
  • **
  • Posts: 44
  • You ARE NikonGear
Re: Sachtler tripod help/nudge please.
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2018, 23:40:22 »
Thanks to all for responding and advice.

While Birna is certainly correct- overkill, I managed to snag a used DA-100 L for $633.00 USD in Ex + condition from KEH. Actually it appears like new as I can't even find a scratch to include the spikes. It also came with Sachtler's humongous hard tube; what a beast! Tomorrow I should receive the Manfrotto 100 mm Half ball adapter. Thrilled  ;D

Derek