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Thread: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

  1. #11

    Join Date
    Dec 2010
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    Canmore Alberta
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    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    I'm a fan of the Ries double-tilt head.....built to last multiple lifetimes. That's what i use to support my Deardorff 5x7.....that head and an old set of Ries Hollywood legs.

  2. #12
    Drew Wiley
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    Sep 2008
    Location
    SF Bay area, CA
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    13,709

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    Monorails like Sinar are easier to balance on a tripod than a big flatbed camera, which has more "dumbbell wobble" potential, with torque vectors not only front to back, but side to side. The Sinar rail clamp also eliminates most of the need for any kind of tripod head or quick release mechanism, although the older Norma rail clamp does not allow you to just drop in the rail from above. But I actually prefer it for being lower profile and more slip resistant than their later options.

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Camano Island, Washington
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    213

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    I have gone to double smaller tripods for longer exposures and longer bellows extensions. As an experiment - I put a construction lazer on top of my Technikardan and my Calumet C-1. At separate times both were mounted on a 400 series aluminum tripod with a PL5 head. tapping the each of the cameras - showed vibration for up to 8 or 10 seconds (this is without using the center column). I repeated this experiment with a wood Professional Junior cine tripod - still vibrations to 6 or 8 seconds. I tried an extension arm off of the tripod leg to the camera - very little vibration dampening decrease. Lastly, I put a 300 series Gitzo tripod at the front standard of each camera mounted on the 400 series Gitzo tripod and the vibrations were stopped. Through my experiment I surmised that the camera movement was caused by: weight and the connection of the tripod head to the tripod where it is thin. Even with the Professional Junior (which is a heavy duty head) there was some movement. A single tripod alone is always a cantilever. Two tripods even smaller ones are more like a truss.

  4. #14

    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Location
    Guelph, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    292

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    On my Toyo rail camera, a monopod as the second source of stability helps when I'm using long lenses. I have a spare rail clamp for my D45M. Mounted on a light carbon fibre tripod, the extra weight isn't too bad. There's still side-to-side wobble potential at the monopod end, so it's not ideal -- but still better than just one tripod when the long rail is used.

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Opheim View Post
    I have gone to double smaller tripods for longer exposures and longer bellows extensions. As an experiment - I put a construction lazer on top of my Technikardan and my Calumet C-1. At separate times both were mounted on a 400 series aluminum tripod with a PL5 head. tapping the each of the cameras - showed vibration for up to 8 or 10 seconds (this is without using the center column). I repeated this experiment with a wood Professional Junior cine tripod - still vibrations to 6 or 8 seconds. I tried an extension arm off of the tripod leg to the camera - very little vibration dampening decrease. Lastly, I put a 300 series Gitzo tripod at the front standard of each camera mounted on the 400 series Gitzo tripod and the vibrations were stopped. Through my experiment I surmised that the camera movement was caused by: weight and the connection of the tripod head to the tripod where it is thin. Even with the Professional Junior (which is a heavy duty head) there was some movement. A single tripod alone is always a cantilever. Two tripods even smaller ones are more like a truss.

  5. #15

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    Sep 2018
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    135

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    I'm a former mechanic. That 1/4 20 SS bolt is capable of holding much more torque than any camera can exert no matter how much it is wracked out and what lens is on the front. The camera will fail before the bolt.
    Last edited by aaronnate; 15-Apr-2019 at 13:52.

  6. #16
    Peter De Smidt's Avatar
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    Jan 2001
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    Fond du Lac, WI, USA
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    7,014

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    I do like using two tripod screws, as there's no chance of the camera twisting.

    Here's what I do with my 4x5 field: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u-jXeJtw_24

    If you're camera has two holes with enough space, you can put on two screws, and slide them both into the slot. That's what I used to do with my Kodak D2. I made a custom platform with two threaded inserts.
    “You often feel tired, not because you've done too much, but because you've done too little of what sparks a light in you.”
    ― Alexander Den Heijer, Nothing you don't already know

  7. #17
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Dec 2012
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    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Opheim View Post
    [... snip good article ...] tapping the each of the cameras - showed vibration for up to 8 or 10 seconds (this is without using the center column). [... please see article ...] Through my experiment I surmised that the camera movement was caused by: weight and the connection of the tripod head to the tripod where it is thin. [...]
    First, thank you for the real-life trial. Tapping the camera certainly introduces a serious case for vibration, however we are largely concerned with the effect of shutter vibration, ground vibration and wind, the later two which can be persistent.

    Aside: I wonder if anyone has luck with tripod leg vibration pads. I have not.

  8. #18
    Les
    Join Date
    Dec 2011
    Location
    Seattle, WA
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    1,084

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    Pepe, you can get a larger helipad (as per Jason) from Smallrig....something like 6x3 inches. Also, Randy put up a link for a larger baseplate that I like, tho I'm unable to find it. Oh, one could easily manuf one of these pancake plates, even with crude tools

    As to tripods, the more reasonable it gets the more wiggly and unstable. No doubt Gitzo or RRS are able to fulfill your wishes: as always at a price.

    Funny, saw a real nice mot. pic tripod (all wood) with a bowl and it went for $100 (Sacramento on epay). Yes, hefty but it would support 11x14 easily. Have I had the time away from my current project, I'd rip down there to pick it up. Missed out!

    Les

  9. #19
    Jac@stafford.net's Avatar
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    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    My most steady tripod. I don't think most would like to hike with it.

  10. #20

    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Granada Hills, CA
    Posts
    64

    Re: Light Tripods: The Weak Link?

    FWIW, I tried several combinations and my camera was always shaky. Worse, I found that tripod heads with a single bolt that never tighten down enough to prevent the camera from twisting and gouging the bottom of the camera. That said, I shoot an 8x10 Burke and James Commercial View (until Saturday...). I use a Kessler Crane Kwik mount system. It works very well and the camera is rock solid on it -- also it mounts in seconds and you always know it is secure. (By comparison, the Manfrotto hex head quick release system seemed to never hold together and the camera was fell out too many times.) That is on top of a older Ries A series Tripod and a Gitzo 1570 head. I am happy with this combo and it holds my custom 14x17 just as solidly. I also use the Kessler Crane Kwik Receiver on my studio stand, where it is just as solid and convenient, and much heavier.

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