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Tripod recommendation

ThdeDude

Active member
"Most of my tripods are over 30 years ... I have acquaintances with similar tripods ... there is surface evidence of “crippling” where the ends of the tubes are deformed because that lateral load on the leg has allowed it to bend just past the elastic limit of the material."
Stated in a reply by "Charles Morris". Not in the actual article "Tripod Stiffness vs. Height".

Would be interesting to know what material, aluminum? Conventional wisdom is that carbon fiber will not undergo plastic deformation.

I find it hard to believe that anyone would put such a load on a tripod that the (aluminum?) legs would get deformed! Surely would have been a very obvious unstable situation.
 
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Pieter 12

Member
...I find it hard to believe that anyone would put such a load on a tripod that the (aluminum?) legs would get deformed! Surely would have been a very obvious unstable situation.
I believe he is referring to the ends that are put under pressure by the clamps, not the load on the legs themselves.
 

P. Chong

Well-known member
I use a Gitzo GT3541, 20+ years old. I use it with a Cube. Extend full for GFX or Alpa. Extend with one remainder section concealed for Sinar, as it has its tripod clamp extending below the rail. And for the RB 67 WLF, keep two sections within. Works perfect for me at 1.75m.
 

MGrayson

Subscriber and Workshop Member
Tripods have (at least) three properties that are definitely at odds. Height, stability, and weight. Everyone has different needs and limits. If I were stronger (or more dedicated?) I'd just follow Graham and get a Gitzo Giant. I can't carry it. I've tried. It just looks down at me and intones "puny mortal - abandon your presumption!" So given my weight limit, I have to balance height and stability. This being getDPI, the obvious solution is "get both". Wait. Did I say both? I meant "all three". Three? well, there are the two extremes and the "best tradeoff" For me, the winners are the Gitzo 5 series 3-section - of which thecentercolumn is rightly in awe. At the other end of the spectrum is the RRS 8 foot monopod. If height is purely for PoV and not stability, it's a great 2 pound solution. And in the middle is the tallest Gitzo 3-series. Add a center column, and it also gets to 8 feet. It has the further advantage that, say I want to adjust the camera - I can lower the column, reach the camera, and hoist it back up again. Or don't use the CC and have a pretty damn stable 2 meters.

But that 5-series stability is addictive. Maybe Jesse has the right idea... just one more tripod...who would notice? :eek:

PS. Hefted my GT5533 and nope, another pound and it would stay at home. GAS has limits. Who knew?
 
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dj may

Well-known member
Tripods have (at least) three properties that are definitely at odds. Height, stability, and weight. Everyone has different needs and limits. If I were stronger (or more dedicated?) I'd just follow Graham and get a Gitzo Giant. I can't carry it. I've tried. It just looks down at me and intones "puny mortal - abandon your presumption!" So given my weight limit, I have to balance height and stability. This being getDPI, the obvious solution is "get both". Wait. Did I say both? I meant "all three". Three? well, there are the two extremes and the "best tradeoff" For me, the winners are the Gitzo 5 series 3-section - of which thecentercolumn is rightly in awe. At the other end of the spectrum is the RRS 8 foot monopod. If height is purely for PoV and not stability, it's a great 2 pound solution. And in the middle is the tallest Gitzo 3-series. Add a center column, and it also gets to 8 feet. It has the further advantage that, say I want to adjust the camera - I can lower the column, reach the camera, and hoist it back up again. Or don't use the CC and have a pretty damn stable 2 meters.

But that 5-series stability is addictive. Maybe Jesse has the right idea... just one more tripod...who would notice? :eek:

PS. Hefted my GT5533 and nope, another pound and it would stay at home. GAS has limits. Who knew?
Bonus on the Systematic 5 XLS; it fits diagonally in a medium-sized suitcase. Tomorrow, I fly to Portugal. While there, I will travel by car for 6 days, after which I will travel by train. I avoid a large suitcase for mixed air/rail travel.
 

Shashin

Well-known member
The perfect tripod...

...I have several of those.

I have really two criteria: It must get to eye level and I have to be able to carry it for long periods. I have found if you then pick a well-made tripod, the stability will be there.
 

mike gannon

New member
look into FIELD OPTICS, there main business are tripods for shoot guns, they are branching off into the photography market, my tripod is the FBT5436C BT Precision, 54.5 inches tall + ball head, weight 3.6 lbs , LOAD CAPACITY 95 lbs.
 

ThdeDude

Active member
I have really two criteria: It must get to eye level and I have to be able to carry it for long periods. I have found if you then pick a well-made tripod, the stability will be there.
I agree with your first criteria, eye level height. This is something I also don't compromise. For my field tripod I like to have a bit more height (six feet with tripod head) in case additional height is needed (me standing on my toes) or in case of uneven territory. For my hiking tripod I compromised this down to eye level height with camera display.

The second criteria you mentioned, "able to carry it for long periods" is more complex. Easy enough if noting else to carry but camera gear. However, for (long distance) hiking, trekking, bushwalking, backpacking, and mountaineering camera equipment has to compete with other essential equipment like water, food, camping equipment, and emergency equipment. Here weight of tripod is much more critical and low tripod weight is essential. Even if the tripod is "well-made" sufficient stability is not guaranteed.

I am currently writing a rather long article on my search for a hiking tripod, which I plan to publish here.
 
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ThdeDude

Active member
The perfect tripod...

...I have several of those.
Tongue-in-cheek?

I fairly boiled my tripod needs to three particular use situations with specific tripod requirements:
- "Field tripod" where stability for heavy camera with long focal length under most environmental condition is paramount;
- "Hiking tripod" where low weight is essential and stability is required only for medium weight cameras and short-medium focal length lenses; and
- "Travel tripod" where compactness is a main consideration and stability is required only for medium weight cameras and short-medium focal length lenses.

Obviously no one tripod can be the "perfect" tripod for all three use situations. Hence, I also have three near-perfect "perfect" tripods.
 
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ThdeDude

Active member
look into FIELD OPTICS, there main business are tripods for shoot guns, they are branching off into the photography market
Yes, scope and rifle tripods with integrated leveling base or integrated inverted ballhead are worth considering. If done right there could be some real weight savings over a separate tripod and tripod head.

Another interesting example is RRS's TFCT- Anvil-30 ARC, https://rrssoar.com/tfct-anvil-30-arc/. (No personal experience, no association)
 
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