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Thread: Arca Cube Help

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    Arca Cube Help

    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

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    Senior Member stephengilbert's Avatar
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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Hi Bob,

    Rod Klukas post at #77 has the directions illustrated---hope that helps. http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...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.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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..

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by philipchan View Post
    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...

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by rga View Post
    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.
    wayne
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    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

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by kdphotography View Post
    Hi Bob,

    Rod Klukas post at #77 has the directions illustrated---hope that helps. http://www.getdpi.com/forum/medium-f...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 ). 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
    Last edited by alajuela; 27th March 2013 at 08:55.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Replace the clamp with a RRS lever style clamp. Save the original to put back on for resale.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by Woody Campbell View Post
    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!

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by ARCA View Post
    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...

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    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by ARCA View Post
    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. (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!

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    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/s.../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/s.../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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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by rga View Post
    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...
    It should have been moveable(adjustable). But 1 mm wider is an adjustment.
    As said above, the head was adjusted for our plates. It should be easily adjustable after squeezing the sides of the clamp together. See the video on my site rodklukas.com.
    I appologize if it appears to be stuck. Not our usual delivery.
    I will say, that the 8501003.1 with the knob is best for those with mixed manufacturers plates. Please contact me or Precision Camera Works for follow up. I am available most times or will get back quickly if not.
    Best regards,
    Rod
    US Representative, Arca-Swiss International
    R-Line Technical Cameras, Large Format View Cameras, Tripod Heads D4, D4m, P1, P0, Z1, Z2, C1 Cube.
    http://www.rodklukas.com/arca-swiss 480-755-3364
    Instagram @arcaswissusa Facebook @arcaswissusa

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Since there are some Arca people here anyway,how about making the bottom 75mm round so the Cube can be fitted directly into the hole/legs of most tripods, replacing the base plate? RRS and Gitzo tripods take 75mm bases. I am not sure whether the RRS base plates like one or more bolts in the side to secure the plate.

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Well, I hate to be the dissenting voice, but my Cube and its clamp has worked perfectly since Day One. Just try to pry it out of my cold, dead hands!
    Bill
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by RodK View Post
    It should have been moveable(adjustable). But 1 mm wider is an adjustment.
    As said above, the head was adjusted for our plates. It should be easily adjustable after squeezing the sides of the clamp together. See the video on my site rodklukas.com.
    I appologize if it appears to be stuck. Not our usual delivery.
    I will say, that the 8501003.1 with the knob is best for those with mixed manufacturers plates. Please contact me or Precision Camera Works for follow up. I am available most times or will get back quickly if not.
    Best regards,
    Rod
    Thanks Rod. I appreciate your concern very much.
    The wheel really doesn't move; I have a bloody index finger and chewed up wooden spoon as evidence!

    The clamp, at half closed, is snug enough to hold the camera bracket without slippage. The clamp also closes completely without applying force. If this is OK and won't cause an "explosion" (what does that mean, specifically: will the cube fall apart? The clamp? Is there something I should do or not do to avoid this?) then I am fine with it.

    My concern is now I'm out of town and have only this new piece of equipment to use on the tripod. Is it going to unexpectedly fail and cause an equipment free fall?

    Thanks for any assistance. I bought this from B&H so I don't know how precision camera ties in.
    Best,
    Bob

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Caulfeild-Browne View Post
    Well, I hate to be the dissenting voice, but my Cube and its clamp has worked perfectly since Day One. Just try to pry it out of my cold, dead hands!
    Bill
    Ditto. Once I tensioned up my clamp properly it has been perfect. (as Wayne mentioned though, don't have the clamp too loose because you will eventually have the camera sneak its way out - expensively!)
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by rga View Post
    The clamp, at half closed, is snug enough to hold the camera bracket without slippage. The clamp also closes completely without applying force. If this is OK and won't cause an "explosion" (what does that mean, specifically: will the cube fall apart? The clamp? Is there something I should do or not do to avoid this?) then I am fine with it.
    Bob,

    The 'explosion' occurs when you loosen the adjuster and the spring pops all of the washers off - normally when you least want it to! It can also happen if you leave the clamp undone when transporting the tripod/head in the trunk. It hasn't happened to me but I know of others who have had it happen. Just remember to close it when you put the tripod in the car.

    Also, consider maybe also getting something like an Optech wide/medium snoot boot - perfect cover for the cube.
    Last edited by GrahamWelland; 27th March 2013 at 22:28.
    Remember: adventure before dementia!

    As Oscar Wilde said, "my tastes are simple, I only like the best"

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Thanks Graham, Ken and Bill. I'm keeping a plate clamped in while transporting. Also, as the wheel is unturnable, perhaps there is a silver cloud in that the tension won't change.
    Thanks all for your very kind assistance,
    Bob

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by rga View Post
    Thanks Rod. I appreciate your concern very much.
    The wheel really doesn't move; I have a bloody index finger and chewed up wooden spoon as evidence!

    The clamp, at half closed, is snug enough to hold the camera bracket without slippage. The clamp also closes completely without applying force. If this is OK and won't cause an "explosion" (what does that mean, specifically: will the cube fall apart? The clamp? Is there something I should do or not do to avoid this?) then I am fine with it.

    My concern is now I'm out of town and have only this new piece of equipment to use on the tripod. Is it going to unexpectedly fail and cause an equipment free fall?

    Thanks for any assistance. I bought this from B&H so I don't know how precision camera ties in.
    Best,
    Bob
    Bob,
    An explosion means if the clamp is over loosened, the springs which push the jaws open, could expand when the knurled ring loses thread and make the clamp come apart and having small parts adrift. It is important to make small adjustments when adjusting, such as 1/4 turn at a time.
    Otherwise should be good for now.
    Precision Camera Works is the North American Repair and Warranty station for Arca-Swiss.
    They are located in Niles, IL. They have a website with instructions and contact info.
    Again, very sorry for this problem.
    Rod
    Last edited by RodK; 27th March 2013 at 21:39. Reason: grammer
    US Representative, Arca-Swiss International
    R-Line Technical Cameras, Large Format View Cameras, Tripod Heads D4, D4m, P1, P0, Z1, Z2, C1 Cube.
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Thank you Rod. I really appreciate you stepping in here and providing guidance and alternatives. I will contact you off list if I need further help.
    Again many thanks,
    Bob

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Caulfeild-Browne View Post
    Well, I hate to be the dissenting voice, but my Cube and its clamp has worked perfectly since Day One. Just try to pry it out of my cold, dead hands!
    Bill
    +1. I put the RRS clamp on it for a couple of days, and put the arca back on. I like the double feature, I'm used to it and I don't like how long the RRS one is.
    wayne
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill Caulfeild-Browne View Post
    Well, I hate to be the dissenting voice, but my Cube and its clamp has worked perfectly since Day One. Just try to pry it out of my cold, dead hands!
    Bill
    I can only confirm Bills statement .
    I have the CUBE , first version , and never had any trouble since .
    The same is valid for the clamp with my D4 .
    Regards . Jürgen .
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Hey guys was rereading and noticed I said Video in reference to adjusting the Fliplock. Sorry! It is actually an illustrated picture sequence to show how the adjustment is accomplished.
    Here is the direct link:

    http://rodklukas.com/resources/Arca-...Adjustment.pdf

    Hope this helps.
    Rod
    US Representative, Arca-Swiss International
    R-Line Technical Cameras, Large Format View Cameras, Tripod Heads D4, D4m, P1, P0, Z1, Z2, C1 Cube.
    http://www.rodklukas.com/arca-swiss 480-755-3364
    Instagram @arcaswissusa Facebook @arcaswissusa
    Likes 3 Member(s) liked this post

  33. #33
    Senior Member kdphotography's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Thank you, Rod.

    I actually think the pdf with illustrations is much better than a video would be.

    ken

  34. #34
    Subscriber Member jotloob's Avatar
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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Thank you Rod for the illustration .

    I do love the ARCA Fliplock and don't want to miss it .
    I never had any trouble with it . I find the handling easy and safe .

    Have nice Easterdays with hopefully better weather than we have here .
    Regards . Jürgen .
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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    Re: Arca Cube Help

    Thanks Rod. Unfortunately the wheel still doesn't turn. However, since I don't need to slide the camera using the half opened feature, I think I'm OK. As I said before when it's half open the camera doesn't slide.

    My only question, if the clamp is that tight half open, will there be a problem with the clamp being even tighter when fully clamped.

    Again, many thanks,
    Bob

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