light weight lf tripod

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SLNestler

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I'm thinking of getting an Ebony 4X5, and a good versatile, but lightweight, tripod; maybe composite. I looked at Gitzo on the web, but don't know the models.
Any recommedations?
Thanks, Steven
 

Dave Parker

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Hi Steven,

If you want to pay the price, any of the Gitzo Carbon Fibers are very good and light weight, albeit on the high side of the prices, the Bogen 3001 is also a very reasonably priced aluminum that will handle the ebony, and one of the underdogs that I have used and really liked is the Giotto, Carbon Fiber less than half the cost of the Gitzo's very sturdy and lightweight, and has a center column that works very simular to the Bendo tripods.

Dave Parker
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BradS

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I'm in a similar situation. I am looking to replace my worn out Vivitar 914 -- which I've been using with a Crown Graphic in the field. I've been looking at the Bogen/Manfrotto 3021B but am not sure which head (a Gitzo is over my budget).
 

Eric Rose

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everyone I know that bought a carbon fibre tripod has had problems with the locking colars. I talked to one of the owners of a local camera store and he indicated this was a common problem.
 

bobfowler

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I have a couple of heads that I like to use on my Bogen 3021 and 3001 sticks. At the moment, I have an older heavy duty Linhof ball head mounted on the 3021, but I also like my old Manfrotto Pro Ball model 168 (the one that uses the hex shaped QR plates). I use the RC0 QR adapter on the Linhof head. My third choice would be a 3047 3-way head, but to be honest, I tend to keep that one on my 3036 sticks these days.

I personally wouldn't use a 3001 with anything bigger than 6X6 with the legs completely extended, and that's even pushing the limit. Sure, it's rated for 11 pounds, but I doubt that it's really stable enough for 4X5 use - especially if you're outdoors with any amount of wind.

I've looked at a lot of carbon fiber sticks but couldn't get past the sticker shock when comparing price to performance. I've found that the best bang for my buck was getting a Berlebach wood tripod. It's light, does a great job of absorbing vibration, and the model I have (the 2042) holds my rather heavy 5X7 rig rock steady. I bought mine used (from a fellow APUG'er), but even at the new-in-box price, it's a great value.
 

Shmoo

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Bob's right...the 3001 is too light for a 4x5, and iffy (IMHO) for even MF. The Bogen 3021 tripod legs with a 3047 pan and tilt head holds my Sinar securely...highly recommend.

S
 

mark

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Another vote for the 3021. Are you going to sell your Ries?
 

jovo

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Shmoo said:
Bob's right...the 3001 is too light for a 4x5, and iffy (IMHO) for even MF. The Bogen 3021 tripod legs with a 3047 pan and tilt head holds my Sinar securely...highly recommend.

S

Actually, the 3001 is just perfect for our Mamiya TLR with paramender and prism finder. It's certainly too light, though for the P67. The 3021 legs and 3047 head work extremely well for the Pentax and for the Omegaview. The latter combination seems to be extremely popular and not at all too expensive. (The best price I've seen for these kits is from Tri-State Camera in NYC, from whom I bought mine btw, though all this stuff has escalated drastically over the several years since I bought it.) Good luck. Buying new stuff is a lot of fun...I hope I can do it again myself someday soon.
 
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I have used a Manfrotto 055 (Sorry don't know Bogen No) with my Ebony with good results for a while with the 410 geared head which is great for setting up the shot. Play developed in the head which I replaced with the heavier duty 405.

I have subsequently found that the play disappears by removing the angle stickers on the 410, removing the allen bolt, disengaging the gears by rotating course control and then rotating the geared barrel insert around to some previously unsed gear teeth.

A new Gitzo 1325 arrived at Christmas which is light and stronger then the Manfrotto but then is 4 times the price! As Eric pointed out the locking collars are a potential nightmare. They have fine pitch thread covered in heavy grease which is incredibly effective as a sand/grit magnet ready to grind the carbon away. Not ideal when I mainly shoot on the coast.

By stripping the tripod down and degreasing then applying some PTFE McLube I have minimised this problem. The other advice is to leave 2-3inches of the bottom leg section extended so that only this gets near the sand/dirt.

The 1325 is plenty tall enough, with legs fully extended and the 405 head, I cannot reach the top of the GG. I am 6 foot. I chose the 1325 because of stability for LF, height and that the 3 section legs are less fiddly to set up for each shot than the 4 section. As I now know, it also has less sand traps!
 

wildbill

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I use the 3021 pro with the 410 geared head. I strongly reccomend the geared head. Fine adjustments and won't tip over when you wan't to make an adjustment. The 3021 fine for 4x5 but too shaky for pentax 67II and probably shaky with longer 4x5 lenses. I wouldn't get the pro model if i had to do it over again. I think the extra piece of metal makes the rig less stable and you'll never need to mount the column horizontally anyway. I've started to hang my pack from the middle to make it sturdier. It's also quite springy in the snow.
 

dancqu

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wildbill said:
I use the 3021 pro with the 410 geared head.
I strongly reccomend the geared head.
Fine adjustments ...

I'll second that 410 gear head. A real boon.
I really like the fact that it is always locked.
For gross adjustments it may be unlocked; very
quick. A real BIG plus, it does not creep. There
is no tightening to do. Dan
 

paul owen

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I'll also suggest the Gitzo 1325. I use one with a Manfrotto 329 head to support an Ebony 45SU. I have recently been using an Art Pan 6x17 roll film back and a 90mm Schneider SA ( a hefty set up!!) and the tripod/head combo works fine! I also suggest leaving a few inches of the lower leg sections extended when closing the tripod as dirt/grit etc stays clear of the locking mechanism. I have found that the locking collars on the Gitzo only require minimal twisting to lock/unlock - over tightening them (unecessary) is probably the cause of many of the complaints re: collars. I've just returned from a trip to the Scottish Highlands and was able to adjust the legs without any problems in low temps (for the UK anyway :} ) both with and without gloves. Only neg aspect = cost!
 
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I too use a Gitzo 1325 and like it a lot. I use it with a 4x5 Sinar Norma with lenses up to 450mm and it never has a problem. The same can't be said for me! I have used it in temperatures ranging from about 90 to minus 25 degrees in all kinds of conditions including standing in mud and water and all I do is wipe it off-it keeps working fine. I can't speak about a head as I use a Sinar head, although I personally would look at one of the Gitzo magnesium pan and tilt heads if they are within the budget.

Richard
 

DeBone 75

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Tripod

If you are using this for field work and are a little handy, go to your local Home Depot or Lowes and get one that is used for constuction transits. They are made of aluminum, light weight and very sturdy. I use mine with my 5X7 monorail. Plus they are very cheap. under $80.00. Fine Art Photo Supply sales a similar one for @$350.00. You should be able to mount most any head to one.
 

Danpv

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Except for price, no complaints with the Gitzo 1325. I use it with a ball head sans center column. Best price I found when scouring the web several months ago was etronics.com.
 

Steve Hamley

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I'm using a Gitzo 1348 (4 section), no column, with a Kirk BH-1 head. No complaints at all, but I suspect you use a tad lighter head.

As far as the collars go, you can clean the heavy grease off and replace it with lighter stuff or a bit of heavy oil as you'll need to every time it gets dirty or gritty.

The collars need to be loosened from the top (loosen the top sections first) when extending the legs, and loosened from the bottom when collapsing the extended legs. And don't over tighten them. That will help with the collars. And they don't snag on brush if that's in your plans.

Steve
 
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