September 22, 2014, 02:37:07 AM

Author Topic: Gitzo QR Modification to Work With Sling Strap OR Switch to Arca-Swiss Style  (Read 1480 times)

bluenoser1993

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I have a Gitzo GH1780QR head that I like because it is pretty secure and it is a very light combination with my carbon Gitzo tripod that folds small.  I also have two plates which is enough as I only have one white lens with a foot (70-200 2.8 IS II).  I want to ditch my 7D neck strap and go with a sling, but want to avoid screwing/unscrewing the connector to use the tripod.  I happen to have a second Gitzo head that I replaced because it doesn't have a separate pan lock, and the ball lock was a bit small.  I'm thinking of removing the clamp from the head, drilling out one of the 3 small mounting holes and treading it to accept a Black Rapid FastenR.

Because the Gitzo plate can engage the clamp in all 4 directions, the clamp can align with the camera body instead of projecting into your face like some of the Arca-swiss type clamps do when used with a sling (at least it looks like it would - no experience with it).  It also has the nice double lock system so I would feel secure with that.  The only worry I have is that the plate has a pretty small foot print and I wonder if the torque from the body/lens bouncing off my hip would be enough to make it spin and consequently loosen the screw in the bottom of the camera.

Just trying to make use of the parts I already have, but don't want to risk the camera gear.  Anyone have experience using the Gitzo GS5370C style plate with a sling, or just general experience with slings attached to a QR system to know if this is a risk?   
« Last Edit: March 22, 2014, 05:32:17 PM by bluenoser1993 »

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neuroanatomist

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Re: Gitzo QR Modification to Work With Sling Strap
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2014, 04:20:18 PM »
I routinely use Blackrapid straps connected to a QR plate / replacement lens foot via a clamp.  Since I use Arca-type plates (as opposed to Gitzo's annoying proprietary system), I use a simple Kirk 1" clamp with the BR lug attached with a little Loctite Blue 242.  I use the setup with lenses up to my 600/4L IS II.
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bluenoser1993

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Re: Gitzo QR Modification to Work With Sling Strap
« Reply #2 on: March 22, 2014, 05:20:55 PM »
Thanks Neuro, in my typical fashion I would never have picked a 1" clamp, thinking overkill was the best way to go.  Your lenses certainly prove it is up to the task of my equipment, and looking at it on line it looks like a very nicely made clamp.

I like my tripod a lot, but will admit upgrading the head with another Gitzo head was a beginners mistake.  I liked that it was sturdy for it's size, but didn't know enough about the rest of the gear and compatibility on the market.

Instead of destroying one head to make a strap quick release, maybe selling both would be the best thing to do and cut my losses now.

I like how the Kirk plates custom fit to bodies to prevent twisting.   

bluenoser1993

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I've added "OR Switch to Arca-Swiss Style" to the title as it is a strong possibility that I'll go that way.  I had already considered the M-Plate Pro, but it isn't as clean a solution as it first looks.  It may interfere with a 50 1.2 lens, you can't sit the camera down on a flat surface in a pinch when you don't have a tripod, and I don' know how to handle the 70-200 without having to un-screw all the time.

QR is the only way really, just a matter of picking a system.   

cdn_photog

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I am using a QR setup similar to Neuro's system - I have a Benro tripod, head, and QR plates, and a second Benro QR clamp that has a Manfrotto QR plate attached to it using the BlackRapid FR-T1 so I can use both my Benro tripod or my GorillaPod with my old Manfrotto ball head without having to change/remove the plates.  It works well, but is a bit bulky, so for day-to-day shooting I threaded an Optech Utility Loop through the camera strap lug and clip the BlackRapid strap to it (shoulder or hand-strap, depending on the day). It works great with shorter lenses (ie 24-105 zoom). If I have a heavier lens, or am walking around with the shoulder strap, I clip the strap to another Utility Loop that is attached to the vertical grip, and run a safety strap from the camera lug around the BlackRapid strap.

neuroanatomist

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Re: Gitzo QR Modification to Work With Sling Strap
« Reply #5 on: March 22, 2014, 08:14:48 PM »
Thanks Neuro, in my typical fashion I would never have picked a 1" clamp, thinking overkill was the best way to go. 

A longer clamp provides more stability in upright applications, but no additional clamping strength in upside down applications.  The shorter clamp is less obtrusive.

I like how the Kirk plates custom fit to bodies to prevent twisting.   

It's not just the custom (and anti-twist) fit of Kirk and RRS plates.  The Arca system also opens the doors to L-brackets, macro rails, panorama gear, etc.
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ScubaX

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I'm not sure about Gitzo stuff, but Desmond makes an adapter that let me convert my Manfrotto from is proprietary QR to a RRS clamp. It's just a small metal piece that fits over the end of the BH stem changing it from female boss to a male boss. They mention Gitzo on their webstie - so maybe a fix without selling your BH's?

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00H5BSIZ6

Also, the BlackRapid FR-T1 that cdn_photog mentions is for use on Manfrotto's RC2 plates and converts their screw to a BR anchor. Not sure what a Gitzo uses, but this allows the Manfrotto plate be engaged in the QR with it still attached. If Gitzo is similar, it may work - I could not tell from pics I looked at.

Personally, if you can just convert the QR plate and go A-S, that's what I would do, and in fact just did and love my RRS L-Bracket in use on my Manfrotto BH with a RRS clamp.

5DMK3, BG-E11, RRS L-Plate, 70-200 2.8L IS II, 70-300 4-5.6L IS, 400 5.6L, 16-35 2.8L II, 100 2.8L IS Macro, 24-105 4.0L IS, 50 1.4, Extenders 2x III & 1.4x III,  Manfrotto 055XPROB w/ MH054M0-Q2 BH converted to A-S, full kit of Lee Filters, F-Stop Satori, Loka and Guru. Modded Black Rapid

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bluenoser1993

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Well I've had another look at Gitzo offerings and I see they have a new "D" series clamp and plate that the Gitzo site says is Arca-Swiss style.  The clamp also has some interchangeable pieces to ensure fits with different "off brand" plates.

At B&H in the head section the description doesn't include Arca compatibility, but in the quick release section the clamp for series 3 can be bought separate and does specify the Arca compatibility.  They don't sell the series 1 clamp but a quick look at the parts list available at Gitzo site tells me they are the same.

With the way Gitzo uses 3 screws to attach the clamp to the ball, I think this is the best I can do without replacing the whole head. 

It is too new and there are no reviews at B&H, has anyone used this new D series clamp/plate?  The only negative I see (assuming good fit) is that the locking side of the clamp is similar to the old C style and has a small length compared to a proper Arca clamp where the whole side slides and clamps.  My light weight tripod probably would induce more movement than the small clamp, so not likely a factor for my lighter gear.     

neuroanatomist

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I'd wait for some reviews.  Manfrotto and Gitzo are the same company.  Some time back, Manfrotto announced the release of their new Top Lock Quick Release System which is, "Compatible with Arca-style quick release plates and systems."  What they failed to mention is that while the Manfrotto plates for that system do work in everyone else's AS-type clamps, Manfrotto managed to make their 'Arca-compatible' clamp proprietary - it cannot be used with other manufacturers' plates (see this link for details and pics). That means no RRS/Kirk L-brackets, no Wimberley/RRS/Kirk lens plates, no connecting your Blackrapid strap with a small Kirk/RRS clamp, etc., and you're stuck buying Manfrotto's Q6 plates for everything.

Hopefully Gitzo does it right, and anyone's plates and L-brackets work properly with their new clamp design.
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bluenoser1993

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I downloaded this attachment from Gitzo (I hope my attempt adding the attachment works) which is the operating instructions.  It shows the use of other brand plates, but I agree it would be risky without hearing from people that have tried it.

bluenoser1993

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Neuro, with the Kirk clamps does the moving side of the clamp have a slightly thinner profile than the fixed side so that if the clamp were sitting on a flat surface the moving side would have clearance under it?  I ask because my tripod head did come with a flat disc so I have the option to replace the clamp with the disc and screw on the camera.  This could allow me to screw on a 2" to 2.5" Kirk clamp for half the price of the questionable new Gitzo D system as long as the clamping side doesn't end up screwed down tight to the disc with the rest of the base.

neuroanatomist

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Neuro, with the Kirk clamps does the moving side of the clamp have a slightly thinner profile than the fixed side so that if the clamp were sitting on a flat surface the moving side would have clearance under it?

Nope, the Kirk clamps (the 1" is on the left) are flat on the bottom.



The clamp on the right is a Really Right Stuff B2-FAB.  There are two little nubs on the bottom of it, 2mm high and right on either side of the 1/4"-20 threaded hole. Since I planned to attache the BlakRapid lug to it, I gave RRS a call, their suggestion was either to 'mash the rubber ring of the BlackRapid FastenR down' onto the nubs, or 'just file them off'. I wasn't keen on either, thus, I ordered the Kirk 1" clamp.  I've been very happy with it (I now have two, one on each of my BR straps).

Since then, RRS came out with a version of the B2-FAB clamp without the nubs. 
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ScubaX

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I could not tell if this http://www.amazon.com/SUNWAYFOTO-Compatible-DDC-G1-Traveller-Sunway/dp/B004G2QAG6 will work or not from the Gitzo parts diagram, but the description says that it replaces the plate on the traveller series clamps from Gitzo.

I have a couple clamps and a plate from Sunwayfoto, they are very well made.

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dcm

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Neuro, with the Kirk clamps does the moving side of the clamp have a slightly thinner profile than the fixed side so that if the clamp were sitting on a flat surface the moving side would have clearance under it?

Nope, the Kirk clamps (the 1" is on the left) are flat on the bottom.



The clamp on the right is a Really Right Stuff B2-FAB.  There are two little nubs on the bottom of it, 2mm high and right on either side of the 1/4"-20 threaded hole. Since I planned to attache the BlakRapid lug to it, I gave RRS a call, their suggestion was either to 'mash the rubber ring of the BlackRapid FastenR down' onto the nubs, or 'just file them off'. I wasn't keen on either, thus, I ordered the Kirk 1" clamp.  I've been very happy with it (I now have two, one on each of my BR straps).

Since then, RRS came out with a version of the B2-FAB clamp without the nubs.

It's the B2-FABN. A 1.5" clamp versus the Kirk's 1", but with three strap lugs which might be useful if you want to secure the body with a safety strap while clamped to the lens foot.

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ScubaX

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Neuro, with the Kirk clamps does the moving side of the clamp have a slightly thinner profile than the fixed side so that if the clamp were sitting on a flat surface the moving side would have clearance under it?

Nope, the Kirk clamps (the 1" is on the left) are flat on the bottom.



The clamp on the right is a Really Right Stuff B2-FAB.  There are two little nubs on the bottom of it, 2mm high and right on either side of the 1/4"-20 threaded hole. Since I planned to attache the BlakRapid lug to it, I gave RRS a call, their suggestion was either to 'mash the rubber ring of the BlackRapid FastenR down' onto the nubs, or 'just file them off'. I wasn't keen on either, thus, I ordered the Kirk 1" clamp.  I've been very happy with it (I now have two, one on each of my BR straps).

Since then, RRS came out with a version of the B2-FAB clamp without the nubs.

It's the B2-FABN. A 1.5" clamp versus the Kirk's 1", but with three strap lugs which might be useful if you want to secure the body with a safety strap while clamped to the lens foot.


I'm using the B2-FABN and it works great. If your not using a grip though, that knob will be in your face. Turning the clamp around puts it where my fingers rest under the lens. Since I'm using the grip, it sits just below my chin on the 5DMKIII. Other cameras, YMMV.

5DMK3, BG-E11, RRS L-Plate, 70-200 2.8L IS II, 70-300 4-5.6L IS, 400 5.6L, 16-35 2.8L II, 100 2.8L IS Macro, 24-105 4.0L IS, 50 1.4, Extenders 2x III & 1.4x III,  Manfrotto 055XPROB w/ MH054M0-Q2 BH converted to A-S, full kit of Lee Filters, F-Stop Satori, Loka and Guru. Modded Black Rapid

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