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Arca Cube Help

rga

Member
Hi All,
Just got the Cube and can't seem to adjust the width tension. The "manual" says to "adjust the width of the Flip-lock by adjusting the small wheel, between the fixation socket and the Flip-lock lever. First, push together the Flip-lock device and adjust."

The wheel doesn't turn either with the lever fully open, half open or closed whether or not I squeeze the two sides of the "Flip-lock device" together or not. I'm reticent to use a screw driver blade on the wheel.

Any guidance would be hugely appreciated!
Thanks,
Bob
 

kdphotography

Well-known member
Hi Bob,

Rod Klukas post at #77 has the directions illustrated---hope that helps. http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-format-systems-digital-backs/29655-d4-vs-cube-2.html

Make only small adjustments on the wheel and try the tension---less you experience the exploding Cube bits, which can be really quite upsetting. I can easily make adjustments with my finger. If needed you can use something softer than a screw driver blade to gently coax some movement, but it should loosen up enough to adjust if you clasp the two halves together as illustrated in Rod's post.
 

rga

Member
Nope. Won't budge. Fingers bloody!!
Well, the plate fits in when fully open, is too snug to move when half closed, and is locked down tight when fully closed. Guess I'll just live with it that way; better than not being able to close the clamp or, when closed, not holding the camera tight.
But for the price... totally sucks..:mad:
 

philipchan

New member
I guess you have the new type like i do. It is basically impossible to adjust the small wheel by human finger because the wheel hides under the flip lock clamp when pressed for adjustment. I followed the instruction by Rod and succeeded in making adjustment through use of a small screw driver.

I later on just had it changed to the classic screw type clamp!

Philip
 

rga

Member
I guess you have the new type like i do. It is basically impossible to adjust the small wheel by human finger because the wheel hides under the flip lock clamp when pressed for adjustment. I followed the instruction by Rod and succeeded in making adjustment through use of a small screw driver.

I later on just had it changed to the classic screw type clamp!

Philip
Guess so. Impossible to turn. Wooden spoon is now a spork...
:ROTFL:
 

kdphotography

Well-known member
I think Rod needs to tell the powers that be at Arca Swiss that the old design is better...it's certainly easier to swap out the flip lever release for a RRS screw clamp or RRS lever release.
 

jagsiva

Active member
The RRS with the metric screw is ideal. Nice fat knob and you're not fumbling with the release lever like on the Arca clamp. One of the few items from AS that I think they tried to get too clever with. Having said that, the AS clamp will mount both the traditional plate as well as the new smaller plates.

As for adjustment, have you tried pinching the clamp with one hand while adjusting the little tension knob? I found this made it a little easier by relaxing the pressure on the spring.
 

Wayne Fox

Workshop Member
Nope. Won't budge. Fingers bloody!!
Well, the plate fits in when fully open, is too snug to move when half closed, and is locked down tight when fully closed.
Actually thats how many of us use it. Leaving it loose enough to slide it when half open can be a recipe for disaster, (ask Graham). I don't think I need to slide it, I put it where I want it when fully open and then close it all the way.

Also, as with all arca swiss brackets, be sure your camera is perpendicular to the bracket if possible and the lens is pointing down if carrying it on tripod over shoulder. I learned this lesson the hard way ... it can slide out even when you think it's locked tight.
 

philipchan

New member
I think Rod needs to tell the powers that be at Arca Swiss that the old design is better...it's certainly easier to swap out the flip lever release for a RRS screw clamp or RRS lever release.
+1! With the new type you have to use brute force to remove the flip lock clamp. I nearly broke mine to have it replaced by screw clamp.

Philip
 

alajuela

Member
Hi Bob,

Rod Klukas post at #77 has the directions illustrated---hope that helps. http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-format-systems-digital-backs/29655-d4-vs-cube-2.html

Make only small adjustments on the wheel and try the tension---less you experience the exploding Cube bits, which can be really quite upsetting. I can easily make adjustments with my finger. If needed you can use something softer than a screw driver blade to gently coax some movement, but it should loosen up enough to adjust if you clasp the two halves together as illustrated in Rod's post.
I feel I must be doing something wrong - certainly in the minority. I have the cube with the new style clamp, and followed Rods post and it works fine. I did have a problem with an AS plate on the Cambo, and RRS on everything else, I replaced the AS plate for the RRS B6: Small Bi-directional Plate, it is square so I could put it an nodal slide, and tightened down with teflon tape, you could use blue lock tight, and adjusted the cube for RRS clamps and so far lived happily ever after, (hope I have no jinxed this :banghead:). I have it adjusted so that on first step of opening the clamp the plate still does not move much, and open all the way, it slides out. When closing down it locks tight. The two step process takes getting use to, but I do think it is less accident prone. I also thought the B6 would be too small, but my RRS L clamp on the DF mounts with little squares so I went with it, also the B6 has a lip so it can not twist.
My advice is squeeze the clamp slightly when open and make very small adjustment to the screw and test till happy. Once you get it right it should stay fixed and you might be happy it is hard to move. Impossible is a different story - was not my experience.

Thanks

Phil
 
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Dustbak

Member
I received my Cube yesterday and had the same issue. I took off the Arca clamp and found I could turn the adjust wheel from the bottom more easily (clamp fully open and the sides firmly pushed together). Turning the adjustment wheel from the top while it is attached to the Cube was impossible.

I adjusted so I could take the body with rails out when fully open, could slide it in when half open and locked when closed. In this situation I noticed I could still slide out the rails, with force but it was possible.

I took off the Arca clamp again. Granted, it is a beautifull little clamp, very nicely constructed. I took out a RRS ProB2 screw clamp and put that on top of the cube.

The one thing I really wish Arca would do is to machine the bottom of the Cube round at 75mm so it can fall directly into the legs of most tripods (like the Gitzo systematic) instead of having to screw it on a tripod top plate. I guess I am spoiled with the Burzsynski ballhead I used for years.
 

rga

Member
Replace the clamp with a RRS lever style clamp. Save the original to put back on for resale.
Amazing. Buy an incredibly expensive tripod head and it's the best out there except the clamp that holds the camera on need is known to be terrible? Sorry what??

Arca Swiss should be ashamed to come out with a product with this issue. What are they thinking?? That folks will tolerate this with their recommendations? A precision part firm?

Wow. Wish my bosses would let me get away with this kind of crud...

Thanks Woody: not venting at you. Just a bit frustrated...
Best,
Bob

PS- And that the rep from Arca (who may be a nice enough person) let's this thread go without even a peep is just as high on my incredulity scale!
 

ARCA

New member
Bob

The ARCA-SWISS dovetail is a 50 Year old Standard and has not changed since.

If you do now try to use whatever third party plates which are not compatible with the ARCA-SWISS Standard (RRS are about 1mm wider) and have to adjust the quickset device, who do you blame ?

Marc, Customer Support
ARCA-SWISS International
 

jagsiva

Active member
Marc, great to see someone with Arca in their job title.

I think AS makes great products, but the quick release clamp on the Cube is terrible, whether using with AS plates or not. I have used it with AS plates, AS L-bracket, and RRS L-brackets.

Issue 1: Inconsistent ergonomics - the cube is full of smooth, large, easy to operate knobs. Why then have a clamp with a two stage release that one needs to fiddle with inside the leaver to get fully opened. Try it 20MPH winds in -20C weather and you'll understand the use case.

Issue 2: All the little bits - why so complicated? you go to adjust the tension, which presumably you'd like to do even when using only AS plates, the whole thing can come apart with bits flying off everywhere. Again, not what I would call consistent with the rest of the AS design philosophy.

Issue 3: I am assuming this particular clamp is designed to work with conventional plates as well as the new Monoballfix plates. This area has been extremely poorly implemented. The "slide-on" adapter on the say the Factum foot to use in a conventional clamp is a complete afterthought.

If you want to discuss further, just PM me.

Great to see you here, but wish you could be more active than then the 4 posts over the past 5 years.
 

rga

Member
Bob

The ARCA-SWISS dovetail is a 50 Year old Standard and has not changed since.

If you do now try to use whatever third party plates which are not compatible with the ARCA-SWISS Standard (RRS are about 1mm wider) and have to adjust the quickset device, who do you blame ?

Marc, Customer Support
ARCA-SWISS International
Wow. Your manual says it's adjustable, but it isn't. Now you're blaming the customer?
Why does your manual and advertisements say it's adjustable (and is 1mm too large to consider an adjustment)? Why won't the nut turn? Is that my fault for trying to do something your manual says you can do?
Weird response...
 

kdphotography

Well-known member
Bob

The ARCA-SWISS dovetail is a 50 Year old Standard and has not changed since.

If you do now try to use whatever third party plates which are not compatible with the ARCA-SWISS Standard (RRS are about 1mm wider) and have to adjust the quickset device, who do you blame ?

Marc, Customer Support
ARCA-SWISS International
Well, I dunno, Marc. The tension adjustment wheel is there for a reason, presumably to *ahem* adjust tension so the clamp can properly hold onto the plate. If the tension adjustment wheel can't be adjusted, it just may be a manufacturing problem. It happens to the best, and I'm sure Arca Swiss will make it right. ;)

Bob, the Cube is the best, imho. And the stock AS clamp does work well (I use it) if it suits you personally. But I think the point being is that the photographer should be the one who decides what works best for them, which plates they want to use (a helluva lot of us swear by RRS), etc. Some like the AS clamp, some move to the RRS screw clamp, others swear by the RRS lever release. I do hope you get this sorted out quickly, Bob, so you can enjoy the Cube the way it should be!

ken

ps. Always look on the bright side. At least you haven't experienced the exploding Cube----yet. :ROTFL: (Save the bits and pieces---it's really easy to put back together, but upsetting nonetheless). There's a reason to make only small adjustments on that tension adjustment wheel!
 

Don Libby

Well-known member
The Cube IMHO is by far the very best head on the market - with the worse clamping device know to man.

I've had the Cube for longer than I can remember and fought with the clamp for years before switching over to a RRS clamp using the screw clamp before switching over to their quick release clamp.

I'm selling the older screw clamp here. The one word of caution is that since you have a newer Cube you really need to heat the bolt up a lot as Arca changed out their glue (locktight?).

Don
 

ARCA

New member
jagsiva wrote:

Issue 1: Inconsistent ergonomics - the cube is full of smooth, large, easy to operate knobs. Why then have a clamp with a two stage release that one needs to fiddle with inside the leaver to get fully opened. Try it 20MPH winds in -20C weather and you'll understand the use case.

Easy, I'll do that in less than a second http://www.getdpi.com/forum/images/smilies/th_coolio.gif
Practice, Practice. The two stage design allows to open the lever, slide the camera for- or backward, (ex. panoramics) and to place the camera vertically on the head when fully open. All with a certain security.


Issue 2: All the little bits - why so complicated? you go to adjust the tension, which presumably you'd like to do even when using only AS plates, the whole thing can come apart with bits flying off everywhere. Again, not what I would call consistent with the rest of the AS design philosophy.

If, ARCA-SWISS plates are used, you do not have to change the adjustment.
If you do use for example RRS plates you do have to adjust the wheel to an extent that the adjusting wheel sits on the last turn of the thread, or on the floor... http://www.getdpi.com/forum/images/smilies/facesmack.gif
Our understanding is that the problem is caused by the non compatible camera plate.


Issue 3: I am assuming this particular clamp is designed to work with conventional plates as well as the new Monoballfix plates. This area has been extremely poorly implemented. The "slide-on" adapter on the say the Factum foot to use in a conventional clamp is a complete afterthought.

That is up to you to think so, but Manfrotto, PhaseOne and many others have already used this quiet effective solution.


Rga wrote:

Wow. Your manual says it's adjustable, but it isn't. Now you're blaming the customer?
Why does your manual and advertisements say it's adjustable (and is 1mm too large to consider an adjustment)? Why won't the nut turn? Is that my fault for trying to do something your manual says you can do?
Weird response...

The wheel is adjustable. We use however some light threadlocking agent to secure the screw from loosening and to give it some friction when it has been several times re-adjusted. And I regret yes, 1mm can be a lot. Now, why should we alter a 50 Year old standard which served well, instead of simply making the camera plate right ?
Try a wooden or plastic pencil to loosen the adjustment wheel, that should work. Otherwise please pm me.


kdphotography wrote:


Well, I dunno, Marc. The tension adjustment wheel is there for a reason, presumably to *ahem* adjust tension so the clamp can properly hold onto the plate. If the tension adjustment wheel can't be adjusted, it just may be a manufacturing problem. It happens to the best, and I'm sure Arca Swiss will make it right.

Correct, the adjustment wheel serves to adjust the quickset device, but only to a certain degree. It was made to adjust for worn out camera plates or monorails from cameras and can also compensate certain camera plates which are not too far from our specifications.

Some additional info: The ARCA-SWISS Cube is available with the following THREE quickset devices: Monoballfix®, classic with small locking screw and FlipLock®http://www.getdpi.com/forum/images/smilies/dazed052.gif


Best regards
Marc Customer Support
 
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