Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Vancouver
    Posts
    373

    Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    I have a couple nice Majestic gear heads that require a bit too much effort to turn the crank for the tilt. Does anyone have experience on how to open and grease them properly so that they operate smoothly again?

  2. #2
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Maryland, USA
    Posts
    4,989

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    The Majestic head is one of the simplest possible mechanisms; just a worm gear and worm.

    There is a tension/backlash adjustment. It's a screw below the end plate on the end opposite the handle.

    Most likely the grease has dried up. I just had to re-grease one of mine.

    Loosen the backlash adjusting screw that I mentioned, then remove the end plate at that end.
    This will give you sufficient access to remove the dried grease and replace it.

    Or go in through the opening at the bottom, where the head attaches to the tripod proper.

    Any decent gear or bearing grease works fine here.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Vancouver
    Posts
    373

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    Thanks Leigh, I'll give it a shot. Neither of the heads has much grease on the worm gear, but neither is dry.

    What concerns me is that even the friction tilt is very stiff on the one head, even with the tension adjustment screw (under the crank) fully released. I should probably disassemble the head, clean it and then re-pack it.

  4. #4
    8x10, 5x7, 4x5, et al Leigh's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2010
    Location
    Maryland, USA
    Posts
    4,989

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    Hi Tony,

    Neither of mine has much grease either. They really don't need much.

    I wonder if the stiff head has been damaged. There shouldn't be any drag with the tension screw backed off.

    You might remove the end plate to fully disengage the worm, then try moving the platform by hand.
    It should move freely, with no resistance. Any other result should be investigated.

    - Leigh
    If you believe you can, or you believe you can't... you're right.

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Vancouver
    Posts
    373

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    Fortunately the less stiff head ends up moving just fine with the 8x10 on it, as there is enough weight to keep the setup from moving while using the crank. However, you're undoubtedly correct about a problem with the stiffer head.

  6. #6
    Vaughn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Location
    Humboldt County, CA
    Posts
    6,370

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    The crank was bent on the one I picked up at a yard sale -- I removed the crank and then a bit of hammer work was required to straighten it up. I need to take another look at it as it has developed a little bit of wobble. I really do not use the pod much as I have a Ries.

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Madisonville, LA
    Posts
    1,352

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    An old thread, but no one mentioned that the grease dries around the worm shaft and can make it very hard to turn the handle that's attached to it. I've now taken several of these apart and cleaned out the old grease around the handle shaft and replaced it with a little oil. If this cakes up, then I'll clean it and try a thin grease! A bent shaft is another problem that can also make it difficult to turn.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    SooooCal/LA USA
    Posts
    966

    Re: Stiff Majestic gear head - how to fix it?

    I took a couple apart that were stiff to frozen up, and I started by freeing up the dried grease with naptha (lighter fluid), and then re-greasing the moving parts... Also using silicone spray that was acetone based really helped free it up...

    Worked great!!!

    Steve K

Similar Threads

  1. Sinar Tilt & Pan Head - pan is stiff
    By Dirk Rösler in forum Gear
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 17-Dec-2009, 22:19
  2. Tightening a Majestic Gear Head
    By Frank Petronio in forum Gear
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 20-Sep-2004, 13:29

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •