A couple of us have been discussing quality issues of the Benro line of tripods and ball mounts. I currently own a couple of their carbon fiber tripods and a KB-2 ball mount. It has been my contention that Benro is good value for the money. Others have said that the look belies the internal quality of build and words from 'crap' to 'junk' to 'crude, crude, crude' have been used by some obviously frustrated folk when describing their experiences with this line of imaging platform equipment. I certainly am swayed by the outward appearance of the line, and have been very pleased to date with the performance of the pieces that I purchased. The 128 CF tripod and KB-2 ball mount are probably a year old. My 328 CF tripod more like four months. I have used the KB-2 and 128 combination for 20D combined with 17-85 and 20D combined with 70-300DO lenses. I also have used this combination with a Toyo 45AX large format camera with excellent results.
After reading the tear down review of a Benro KS-2 ball mount on Tom Webster's website and commenting on his obvious frustration with the piece and subsequent bashing (in my opinion) in the review, I thought it a good idea to get into my KB-2 and see how things compared. The KB-2 is about $10 less than the KS-2 on Ebay at this time so this ball mount should be maybe of a little less quality than the KS-2, or maybe it's because the KS-2 is finished in black instead of the grey patina on my KB-2. One difference for sure is that the tensioning screw is opposite the tightening screw on the KB-2 versus at a right angle on the KS-2.
If you haven't read the Webster review it's at:
Assuming I can get some pics uploaded, here we go.
The first of these pictures shows the KB-2 ball mount in its assembled state.
The second shows the inner parts of the ball mount disassembled. I did not remove the post from the ball, nor the plate holder from the post, but will comment on those items as we move along.