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Thread: Tripod on a budget

  1. #41
    Senior Member edutilos-'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by megain View Post

    @edutilos I came back from a beach shoot. Is rinsing my tripod with tap water (parts fully exposed) and then drying it considered 'poor care'? o.O
    Beach is nothing...

    You rinse it down it will be ok... When you submerge the tripod and can pour water out, then best to hose it down asap after shooting (I usually bring a bottle and a cloth), then spray WD40 when go home. Once in a while just strip it and clean it more thoroughly... And be prepared to replace it (or the nuts/bolts) once every year or 2 years (depending on your luck, frequency of shooting and quality of tripod).

    Even Gitzo carbon fibre will be affected by corrosion over the long run, not the carbon fibre, but the metal parts will still rot..

  2. #42
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by edutilos- View Post
    Then let me tell you, Gitzo or what, unless you get a Ocean Traveller, the joints will rot in the sea same as a Sirui.
    Haha, then I make sea travelling the last trip to do. Make it serve the last time before decommissioning :P
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  3. #43

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by edutilos- View Post
    Even Gitzo carbon fibre will be affected by corrosion over the long run, not the carbon fibre, but the metal parts will still rot..
    No.. Gitzo carbon fibre will still get it as well.. on the legs itself, yes.

    The best way is to wash with water asap after shooting, don't wait.

    And do not think that you are safe by shooting on the sand.
    Obviously there's much less contact with seawater compared to submerging your tripod in it. But wind carries the water particles as well. So remember to clean your gears after a beach trip.

  4. #44
    Member JohnJon82's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Was thinking to get a Gitzo GT1542T then no need to have itchy thought to upgrade anymore. After reading this maybe I should get a Sirui T-1204X instead...
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  5. #45
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by JohnJon82 View Post
    Was thinking to get a Gitzo GT1542T then no need to have itchy thought to upgrade anymore. After reading this maybe I should get a Sirui T-1204X instead...
    Review carefully on your needs, you might be itching over the 2000 series when your setup gets too heavy. Which is what I'm aiming for now (from a sirui 1000 series tripod)
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  6. #46

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by edutilos- View Post
    I doubt he shoots in the sea then.

    I always don't spend too much on tripods because well, even if they are sooooo good, there's always a chance that they'll be gone. It doesn't have to be theft, during my recent trip the whole thing went into the sea when a huge wave came and stirred up all the sand - this was after I had dug it in deep too.
    i certainly don't mean to imply that branded tripods are indestructible

    basic maintenance is necessary when using equipment in adverse conditions. i don't shoot beaches but i do make the effort to wash off the mud, WD40 the joints and dry it on the balcony whenever i take my tripod out.

    what i mean to say is that getting a tripod and ballhead that is "just right" for one's needs, without considering future needs may cost a new user more money in the end. this is "school fees" that can be saved.

    one certainly doesn't need to get a gitzo. but budget permitting, one should at least get a setup that they won't outgrow too quickly because under those circumstances, it will costs more to upgrade.

  7. #47
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Just a note about WD-40.

    It was designed primarily to loosen 'stuck' joints due to rust.
    (If I'm not wrong it literally means "Water Displacement - 40th attempt" )

    From past experience, it doesn't work too well as an anti-rust, since it doesn't adhere too well to the metal surface and form a protective film.
    It would appear that the SAF's practice of brushing mineral oil onto the metal parts does a much better job of preventing corrosion.
    Your experience may differ.
    Exploring! :)

  8. #48
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    Just a note about WD-40.

    It was designed primarily to loosen 'stuck' joints due to rust.
    (If I'm not wrong it literally means "Water Displacement - 40th attempt" )

    From past experience, it doesn't work too well as an anti-rust, since it doesn't adhere too well to the metal surface and form a protective film.
    It would appear that the SAF's practice of brushing mineral oil onto the metal parts does a much better job of preventing corrosion.
    Your experience may differ.
    Yes, I also read/heard many moons ago, something like that. And also, if I am not wrong, it is also not 'inert' to metal - i think SAF dun allow this on weapon? So if you pamper your $$$ tripod, consider others, use WD only when you need to loosen up...

  9. #49

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    Just a note about WD-40.

    It was designed primarily to loosen 'stuck' joints due to rust.
    (If I'm not wrong it literally means "Water Displacement - 40th attempt" )

    From past experience, it doesn't work too well as an anti-rust, since it doesn't adhere too well to the metal surface and form a protective film.
    It would appear that the SAF's practice of brushing mineral oil onto the metal parts does a much better job of preventing corrosion.
    Your experience may differ.
    according to wikipedia, it does leave behind oil on the surface

    during my active time, my unit frowns on the use of WD40 so we never used it

    i use it as intended by the brand name - for water displacement on the tripod joints after rinsing it. mine's a clip-lock - after inspecting the mechanisms i felt more kiasu abt maintenance since there were some delicate metal parts in each clip.

    edit: i have singer oil at home, but i didn't want to use it cos i don't want it running all over the tripod legs and causing a mess.
    Last edited by detritus; 22nd December 2011 at 04:40 PM.

  10. #50
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by detritus View Post
    according to wikipedia, it does leave behind oil on the surface

    during my active time, my unit frowns on the use of WD40 so we never used it

    i use it as intended by the brand name - for water displacement on the tripod joints after rinsing it. mine's a clip-lock - after inspecting the mechanisms i felt more kiasu abt maintenance since there were some delicate metal parts in each clip.

    edit: i have singer oil at home, but i didn't want to use it cos i don't want it running all over the tripod legs and causing a mess.
    Not disputing that it feels damn oily even after some time
    Yes I think if you have a metal surface that is moist (with water), spraying WD-40 is a good idea, since its intended function is to displace water. But for long-term rust prevention, I'm not so sure...

    Anyway my opinion is based on experience and not on any specific scientific theory, so it is by no means conclusive.
    I find engine oil works quite well. It is significantly more viscous than Singer Oil
    Exploring! :)

  11. #51

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by megain View Post
    Hello there! I'm wondering if any of you have good tripod recommendations. I own a tripod but 1. it takes very long to set up(must screw in camera, must slowly unlock legs by clips and pull out) and 2. is about 1m tall and I find it insufficient.
    The tripod is for a DSLR(normal lens) btw.

    What features I would like:
    1. Fast set-up
    2. Height of at least 1.6m
    3. Quick release mount
    4. Ball head
    5. Level meter(idk what's it called. something that tells you your horizon is straight) (Highly optional though)

    My budget is around $150-200.
    Thanks for taking time to read and recommend!
    what you can do when going to shops to find out what are the brands that are available out there and have a good feel of the quality and made. Be prepare to make more than 1 trip. First trip, don't bring enough money, atm card, visa, or master.... so that you won't be able to pay for anything even when pressured by the salesman. Note down the brand and models. Go home, surf the web for more information and the price. Then call the shops as listed in cs price guide for pricing. Then make a second trip to the shop to make your purchase. They won't pressure or persuade you to purchase others when you have thoroughly done your homework.

    You already have some idea what to look for... anyway here goes.
    Things to note are;
    1. weight and size(folded) of tripod and head - a weight that you can carry around without feeling encumbered
    2. maximum weight the tripod and head that it is is able to hold - find out the weight of your heaviest setup (camera and lens, flash, etc)
    3. maximum height of the tripod (with the head) without extending the centre column. - to suit your height so that you won't be bending over too much when using it.
    4. price
    5. ergonomics or ease of use. eg. locking mechanism of legs,... ball head, pan head... ease of use.
    6. special features and material. eg. g-lock in gitzo that has a o-ring gasket to keep water out of the legs, manfrotto proB allow centre column to shift to horizontal, gitzo explorer with a tilting centre column, built-in spirit level to level tripod, reversible column, reversible legs, etc. and for material, plastic, aluminium, basalt, carbon. Generally, avoid the cheapest tripod with plastic head. (you know what I mean)

    PS. do note that there are the cheaper tripods that comes with the head attached and it cannot be removed. If you don't mind, not having the option to change head later on....by all means.
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  12. #52
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    yeap I will definitely head over one of these days. Thanks for the tips!

    P.S. You can't bargain in TK Photo right?(like in Bugis Street) o.O

  13. #53

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    Not disputing that it feels damn oily even after some time
    Yes I think if you have a metal surface that is moist (with water), spraying WD-40 is a good idea, since its intended function is to displace water. But for long-term rust prevention, I'm not so sure...

    Anyway my opinion is based on experience and not on any specific scientific theory, so it is by no means conclusive.
    I find engine oil works quite well. It is significantly more viscous than Singer Oil
    u know, with regard to long term use, i only wish that edutilos is right in his assessment that the average lifespan of an abused tripod is abt 2 yrs

    i do basic maintenance on it because i dun wanna get played out by it when i go shooting. but if and when it finally spoils, i'll be happy to finally upgrade to the gitzo explorer i've been eyeing

  14. #54

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by megain View Post
    yeap I will definitely head over one of these days. Thanks for the tips!

    P.S. You can't bargain in TK Photo right?(like in Bugis Street) o.O
    Not sure about other shops, but TK prices are fixed.

  15. #55
    Senior Member edutilos-'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    Just a note about WD-40.

    It was designed primarily to loosen 'stuck' joints due to rust.
    (If I'm not wrong it literally means "Water Displacement - 40th attempt" )

    From past experience, it doesn't work too well as an anti-rust, since it doesn't adhere too well to the metal surface and form a protective film.
    It would appear that the SAF's practice of brushing mineral oil onto the metal parts does a much better job of preventing corrosion.
    Your experience may differ.


    WD-40 Frequently Asked Questions

    PROTECTS: WD-40 protects metal surfaces with corrosion-resistant ingredients to shield against moisture and other corrosive elements.
    While this may vary depending on the application, WD-40 remains effective even after it appears to dry. The corrosion and rust protection ingredients remain adhered to the surface. External conditions may, of course, require additional applications of WD-40 for maximum protection.
    Don't know, but seems to help thus far. After all, the main problem is having the tripod stew in saltwater when not shooting, as opposed to its being exposed when shooting... It's not as if one leaves his tripod out in the sea for a long period of time?
    Last edited by edutilos-; 22nd December 2011 at 10:53 PM.

  16. #56
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by edutilos- View Post


    WD-40 Frequently Asked Questions





    Don't know, but seems to help thus far. After all, the main problem is having the tripod stew in saltwater when not shooting, as opposed to its being exposed when shooting... It's not as if one leaves his tripod out in the sea for a long period of time?
    My findings are by no means conclusive as well.

    My experience on a number of occasions is that WD-40 works for releasing 'stuck' and rusty joints, but is not an ideal rust inhibitor for storage in normal ambient conditions in Singapore (80+% humidity, 30deg C etc). In fact it somehow seems to 'encourage' corrosion in some cases. Have had carbon steel items forming an obvious layer of red oxidation after liberal application of WD-40 and storage for about a month. Repeated the same process with good 'ol engine oil and brush, and it is a million times better.
    ~shrug~

    I would certainly agree that seawater is much more aggressive in causing corrosion.
    Exploring! :)

  17. #57
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by detritus View Post
    u know, with regard to long term use, i only wish that edutilos is right in his assessment that the average lifespan of an abused tripod is abt 2 yrs

    i do basic maintenance on it because i dun wanna get played out by it when i go shooting. but if and when it finally spoils, i'll be happy to finally upgrade to the gitzo explorer i've been eyeing
    hahaha depends on what level 'abused' refers to
    I certainly don't hope my tripod fails in me in 2 years.... hehe

    On my previous Benro tripod, I replaced the 6pcs (2clips per leg) hexagon nuts and springs with stainless steel ones from local hardware supplier. Cost me <$10 and the corrosion is no more. Of course still needs to be maintained regularly. Only problem is the t-shaped connector, which I couldn't find and had to get spares from Benphoto.
    Exploring! :)

  18. #58

    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post
    hahaha depends on what level 'abused' refers to
    I certainly don't hope my tripod fails in me in 2 years.... hehe

    On my previous Benro tripod, I replaced the 6pcs (2clips per leg) hexagon nuts and springs with stainless steel ones from local hardware supplier. Cost me <$10 and the corrosion is no more. Of course still needs to be maintained regularly. Only problem is the t-shaped connector, which I couldn't find and had to get spares from Benphoto.
    thats a good idea never occurred to me to do that... might do that too if it starts to act up. stainless steel springs definitely sounds more assuring.

  19. #59
    Senior Member edutilos-'s Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by ZerocoolAstra View Post

    My experience on a number of occasions is that WD-40 works for releasing 'stuck' and rusty joints, but is not an ideal rust inhibitor for storage in normal ambient conditions in Singapore (80+% humidity, 30deg C etc). In fact it somehow seems to 'encourage' corrosion in some cases. Have had carbon steel items forming an obvious layer of red oxidation after liberal application of WD-40 and storage for about a month. Repeated the same process with good 'ol engine oil and brush, and it is a million times better.
    ~shrug~

    I would certainly agree that seawater is much more aggressive in causing corrosion.
    I see. I'll take that into consideration when I get the next aluminium tripod after this one falls apart.

    Hopefully it will last a while, since I have a wooden tripod for sea... That seems to be holding up pretty fine - in part because well, it's "open" and much easier to clean.

  20. #60
    Senior Member ZerocoolAstra's Avatar
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    Default Re: Tripod on a budget

    Quote Originally Posted by detritus View Post
    thats a good idea never occurred to me to do that... might do that too if it starts to act up. stainless steel springs definitely sounds more assuring.
    If you work near Kallang Way, can visit Singapore Spring for comprehensive range of springs.
    Only thing is you'll need to understand the different dimensions and terms 'spring rate', 'free length', 'wire diameter', 'OD', etc., coz the ladies at the counter are a bit... unreliable
    Exploring! :)

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