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Thread started 26 May 2012 (Saturday) 20:23
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Best Value - "Flat Top" - "No Column", Carbon Tripod?

 
babel_fish
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May 26, 2012 20:23 |  #1

I've been sort of looking but I'm having a hard time actually finding a way to narrow searches on vendor sites to tripods that offer a flattop or no center column option.

My Needs:
Flat top - no center column
Equivalent leg diameter - at least 30mm
20lb + carry capacity
Carbon Fiber
4 section, can do 3 section but height maximum is more important.
61-63" height or higher

Budget:
$400

Where to start?
Any help out there?


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tvphotog
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May 26, 2012 20:53 |  #2

babel_fish wrote in post #14489442 (external link)
I've been sort of looking but I'm having a hard time actually finding a way to narrow searches on vendor sites to tripods that offer a flattop or no center column option.

My Needs:
Flat top - no center column
Equivalent leg diameter - at least 30mm
20lb + carry capacity
Carbon Fiber
4 section, can do 3 section but height maximum is more important.
61-63" height or higher

Budget:
$400

Where to start?
Any help out there?

As far as I know, only Gitzo and Really Right Stuff have that kind of tripod, and your price will be double what you want to spend. Check Feisol.


Jay
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Lowner
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May 27, 2012 06:28 as a reply to  @ tvphotog's post |  #3

I am using a Manfrotto 055CXPRO3 with the centre column removed and the ballhead mounts on a simple alloy plug which simply replaces the centre column, it is locked in place using the centre column locking thumbscrew. The PRO3 is 3 section, but Manfrotto offer a PRO4 4 section version.

I'm happy to PM you pictures of it if interests you.


Richard

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tvphotog
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May 27, 2012 07:37 |  #4

Check the Feisols at www.reallybigcameras.c​om (external link). They have what you want at about $325. They're an excellent product, have good reviews here. I've got a 3441 travel model which is excellent.


Jay
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sarahhj
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May 27, 2012 10:13 |  #5

Hi Richard,

I am interested in your set up. I too have the 055CXPRO3 and currently use a short centre column - but your method might suit me better. Please could you post up or PM me your photos?


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peter_n
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May 27, 2012 10:42 |  #6

Benro and Feisol are popular value brands. If you're a taller person the Feisols are better, smaller users often choose Benro. Whatever tripod you choose get one with anti-rotation leg locks. The Feisol model that looks near your requirements seems to be the CT3471 (external link); 37mm max leg , 26.5lbs max load, 60.6" max height, $414. The nearest Benro is the C3780T (external link); 32.5mm max leg, 39.6lbs max load, 58.2" max height, $490. The Benro is a clone of the Gitzo 3541LS and takes Gitzo and RRS tripod accessories.


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Lowner
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May 27, 2012 12:11 |  #7

sarahhj wrote in post #14491188 (external link)
Hi Richard,

I am interested in your set up. I too have the 055CXPRO3 and currently use a short centre column - but your method might suit me better. Please could you post up or PM me your photos?

Saraahhj,

2 images, the 1st is the hole in the tripod when the centre column is removed. The 2nd is the alloy plug screwed to the ballhead. The thumbscrew you should see on the trpod head rim locks everything together.


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Richard

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Lowner
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May 27, 2012 12:12 as a reply to  @ Lowner's post |  #8

This last shows the whole thing in use.


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Richard

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sarahhj
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May 27, 2012 12:46 |  #9

Thank you Richard for the photos.

My tripod has the Q90 system (So the centre column can be placed horizontally)... I'm not sure if/how I can remove this to achieve your set up though. I guess I will have to continue with the short column.


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Lowner
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May 27, 2012 12:54 |  #10

sarahhj wrote in post #14491697 (external link)
Thank you Richard for the photos.

My tripod has the Q90 system (So the centre column can be placed horizontally)... I'm not sure if/how I can remove this to achieve your set up though. I guess I will have to continue with the short column.

No, you will be fine. My 055 used the same system. The assembly comes out as one complete unit but once its out it needs holding together just in case you ever want to replace it and I have used a few elastic bands around the two halves of the assembly. Its a very simple and quick matter to replace it back into the tripod, the only problem I'd have is I would need to transfer my ballhead across.

I've added another shot trying to show how the standard Manfrotto locking method plays right into our hands.


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Richard

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babel_fish
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May 29, 2012 01:17 |  #11

Thank you everyone for all of your suggestions and ideas. I am looking into Feisol and Benro for new tripods and also I have found a few models of Gitzo that meet my requirements on the used market. Specifically the 1325 and 1548 (there is likely more).


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msowsun
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May 29, 2012 07:52 |  #12

Lowner wrote in post #14491559 (external link)
Saraahhj,

2 images, the 1st is the hole in the tripod when the centre column is removed. The 2nd is the alloy plug screwed to the ballhead. The thumbscrew you should see on the trpod head rim locks everything together.

Where did you find the 37mm alloy plug?


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Lowner
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May 29, 2012 08:26 |  #13

msowsun wrote in post #14499550 (external link)
Where did you find the alloy plug?

I experimented with a handmade GRP plug first, then when I was happy with the design a friend made me the alloy version.

In some ways the GRP version is better, for one thing its black, but I originally thought I needed a little platform on the plug. I've since decided that while pretty, it is actually pointlessly complicating the issue and a basic 37mm diameter round "lump" with a hole down the centre for a 3/8" screw is all I need. I've since modified it very slightly by adding a means of attaching a bungee cord so I can place my back pack under the tripod and connect the two.


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msowsun
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May 29, 2012 08:59 |  #14

Thanks, but what is "GRP"?


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auto-clicker
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May 29, 2012 09:24 as a reply to  @ msowsun's post |  #15

GRP=Glass Reinforced Polymer




  
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Best Value - "Flat Top" - "No Column", Carbon Tripod?
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