August 21, 2014, 08:28:58 AM

Author Topic: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head  (Read 1467 times)

jonathan7007

  • EOS M2
  • ****
  • Posts: 230
    • View Profile
This weekend finally kinda gave up on Manfrotto head/attachments. This is going to cost me but... I plan to switch over to the RSS gear I'll need for simple pano experimentation. I am only interested in single row pano right now, but the panos I tried included a couple that needed a nodal rail. I am losing confidence in Manfrotto, so I figured it was time to switch.

(Searched whole CR forum for posts on geared heads and read everything returned.)

I had trouble getting my whole support combination to stay level through the "swing". Surprisingly my wonderful very heavy old-style Gitzo Tele-Studex 309 seems to have a spirit level that's inaccurate! (I will have to confirm that with some other levels and a known level surface right away.) I had found Manfrotto's L-bracket but trying to use it this weekend found it's a kludge compared to the RSS. I believe it introduced some flex and alignment change. I have a pano rotator from Manfrotto (300N) but think I can stick with that.

The RC4 quick-release is still a little looser than I'd like. Yes, it's better than my RC2 plates but still not great. I was using my Manfrotto 410 geared head with the RC4 plate as the camera attachment -- not rotation. Is there any Arca Swiss standard equivalent? Some searches today turn up nothing. I have seen one shooter say he just bought the clamp "adapter". I do architecture and real estate so want to continue to use a geared head for that.  Is there a geared head for about $300 that uses to Arca Swiss quick release? Yeah, I saw the $1,600 block of goodness that Arca Swiss makes... clients here aren't paying the margins for that.

From my experimentation I take it that the tripod has to offer the rotator a perfectly level plane of swing. Can I just give up a head altogether and have the rotator on the tripod as the "head", then place a nodal rail on the rotator, then, of course, the camera on the rail? That takes a source of error (the head) out of the "stack".

I know I'll need one RSS for each body, so I think I'll stick to one L-clamp for my 1DsMk3.

Thoughts? Suggestions?

jonathan7007

canon rumors FORUM


neuroanatomist

  • CR GEEK
  • ********
  • Posts: 13846
    • View Profile
Re: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2013, 10:50:43 PM »
If you like your geared head, maybe keep it and use the Kirk adapter to concert the RC4 to an AS-type clamp.

http://www.kirkphoto.com/SQRC-3271_Manfrotto_3271_Quick_Release_Clamp.html
EOS 1D X, EOS M, and lots of lenses
______________________________
Flickr | TDP Profile/Gear List

Mt Spokane Photography

  • Canon EF 600mm f/4L IS II
  • ********
  • Posts: 8404
    • View Profile
Re: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2013, 11:10:50 PM »
If you like your geared head, maybe keep it and use the Kirk adapter to concert the RC4 to an AS-type clamp.

http://www.kirkphoto.com/SQRC-3271_Manfrotto_3271_Quick_Release_Clamp.html

 
I've bought two of the Kirk clamps a few years back when they were selling them on ebay for $20. They allow you to attach a manfroto plate to it so it converts to AS.
The extra height of the stackup is more noticible than a person would expect.  You still have the issue securing the manfroto plate tightly.  I tried to find a way to attach the Kirk Clamp directly to the manfroto head, but with my RC2 head, it wasn't or didn't seem possible.
 
They make a AS clamp that will attach without having to stackup QR plates.
http://www.kirkphoto.com/Universal-Quick-Release-Clamps.html
 

pensive tomato

  • PowerShot G1 X II
  • ***
  • Posts: 61
    • View Profile
Re: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2013, 11:36:15 PM »
Long time lurker, first time poster.

As stated before, if you like your 410 gear head, you can replace the whole plate, keeping it stable, and making Arca-Swiss compatible. I did it using the plate and clamp developed by Hejnar Photo:

http://www.hejnarphotostore.com/index.php?main_page=index&cPath=16_17

I liked it better over the Kirk solution, which basically gives a clamp but doesn't get rid of the issue of a potentially loose Manfrotto plate. I went in the direction of Hejnar's solution over a year ago after quite a bit of research and I've been very happy every since (no commercial ties, just a happy customer!).

You can also look at some of the solutions at Hejnar's Photo for dealing with parallax error, or if you're looking at a comprehensive and precise solution for panos, then there are also the RRS solutions:

http://reallyrightstuff.com/Items.aspx?code=PanoPkgs&key=cat
6D | M | 24-70 f/2.8L II | 70-200 f/4L IS | 40 f/2.8 | 50 f/1.4 | 85 f/1.8 | 100 f/2.8L Macro IS | 22 f/2 STM | 600EX-RT (x2) | MT-24 EX | 270 EX II | ST-E3-RT

jonathan7007

  • EOS M2
  • ****
  • Posts: 230
    • View Profile
Re: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head
« Reply #4 on: April 15, 2013, 06:21:30 AM »
Thanks for the specific suggestions, and I will look closely at the links. Earlier tonight I kept looking and few other geared heads. The 405 is too big. The Arca Swiss 4D (geared version) looks great but the only price I saw was about 1100 euros before delivery. The bigger Cube is terrific, too, I am sure. But too expensive for this market.

So these adaptive arrangements seem like a good idea. I'd like to eliminate the RC4 plate looseness. I am willing to get a local machine shop involved, too.

Time to research Kirk, too.

Again, thanks.

jonathan7007

  • EOS M2
  • ****
  • Posts: 230
    • View Profile
Re: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2013, 10:46:32 PM »
Hey Pensive, that solution from Hejnar is EXACTLY what I was looking for and I had thought I'd have to find a machine shop to do it. Great! So I will look for a simple rail from Hejnar, Kirk, or RSS to shift the camera back behind the node...

canon rumors FORUM

Re: Moving fm Manfrotto to RSS/Arca-Swiss but still need geared head
« Reply #5 on: April 16, 2013, 10:46:32 PM »