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Thread: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

  1. #1
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    Default Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?



    was attempting to shoot some astro stuff and i find that using a ball head on high friction when after i tighten the knob and let go the lense, there's still some movement, i.e. lense points a bit lower than originally intended.

    anyone tried mounting a geared head onto a ball head before? flexibility of.. a ball head.. and to have accurate adjustments with the geared head when needed?
    chezburgr i can haz?

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post


    was attempting to shoot some astro stuff and i find that using a ball head on high friction when after i tighten the knob and let go the lense, there's still some movement, i.e. lense points a bit lower than originally intended.

    anyone tried mounting a geared head onto a ball head before? flexibility of.. a ball head.. and to have accurate adjustments with the geared head when needed?
    Your Ball head is either undersize or no good! Was using the monfrotto - give up. My kang... ballhead also shift!

    I am (will be using) a BH55 for simliar apps. (will be mounting a TV pronto with either d70 or d200).

    My other problem - my setup seems too long when I try high power shot (ie, taken with eyepiece attached)... you have any idea how to overcome this. If not got to do the more traditional way - then it become tedious setup ....

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    I had similar problems, but found that it is the battery grip that gave the problem rather than the ball head. Wonder if yours may be a similar problem.

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post


    was attempting to shoot some astro stuff and i find that using a ball head on high friction when after i tighten the knob and let go the lense, there's still some movement, i.e. lense points a bit lower than originally intended.

    anyone tried mounting a geared head onto a ball head before? flexibility of.. a ball head.. and to have accurate adjustments with the geared head when needed?
    seriously, with some thinking you should have realise that it will make the situation worse as now you are adding additional weight (the gear head) on the ballhead

  5. #5

    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post


    was attempting to shoot some astro stuff and i find that using a ball head on high friction when after i tighten the knob and let go the lense, there's still some movement, i.e. lense points a bit lower than originally intended.

    anyone tried mounting a geared head onto a ball head before? flexibility of.. a ball head.. and to have accurate adjustments with the geared head when needed?
    Find a lens/scope with a tripod collar. It is more balanced.

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by swhyge View Post
    Your Ball head is either undersize or no good! Was using the monfrotto - give up. My kang... ballhead also shift!

    I am (will be using) a BH55 for simliar apps. (will be mounting a TV pronto with either d70 or d200).

    My other problem - my setup seems too long when I try high power shot (ie, taken with eyepiece attached)... you have any idea how to overcome this. If not got to do the more traditional way - then it become tedious setup ....
    wah..even kang also? sometimes i find the difficulty in moving half a mm up or down, n longer focal lengths might de-centralize the subject. my ball is tight when i tighten, but mini adjustment is tedious

    Quote Originally Posted by cantaresg View Post
    I had similar problems, but found that it is the battery grip that gave the problem rather than the ball head. Wonder if yours may be a similar problem.
    was mounting via tripod collar of lens though

    Quote Originally Posted by ExplorerZ View Post
    seriously, with some thinking you should have realise that it will make the situation worse as now you are adding additional weight (the gear head) on the ballhead
    i'm using a manfrot 468, i dont suppose an additional 1kg head would be that bad?
    chezburgr i can haz?

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    any ideas or comments?
    chezburgr i can haz?

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    the ballhead is tight, no slip at all at all angles, but its during the tightening where i lose a fraction of mm, is it cuz my friction isnt high enough?
    chezburgr i can haz?

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    My problems (not stated too clear in my earlier post)

    1 Some how it 'slips' when tightening after centering the object...
    2. Like you, it holds the scope in place - no slippage after that
    3 But my setup vibrates - damping is slow
    4. The support point of my scope setup is adjustabe - ie can made the cg almost on top of the ballhead.


    other pt:

    1. Maybe scope setup is too long (for ballhead method) hence, got this problem.
    2. Also not sure if the higher cap ballhead can eliminate this. Hoping that a bigger ball dia. may reduce above effect. (anyway, my new head is not meant purely for this. I have the mount from Televue - works better but is a dedicated one..
    3 Still thinking if i should invest in EQ mount?

    I think even if your gear head works in the positioning adjustment, the vibration may be more pronounced than mine, unless your scope setup is much shorter.
    Last edited by swhyge; 13th August 2007 at 02:45 PM.

  10. #10

    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post
    any ideas or comments?
    Get a proper Alt-Az or equatorial mount lah!

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Geez... My ball head is a baby compared to yours. Then I shall keep my mouth shut. Haha. My ball head is a 486RC2, and it is able to take about 2kg with no issues if mounted via the tripod collar. But it slips when mounted via the grip.

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by cantaresg View Post
    Geez... My ball head is a baby compared to yours. Then I shall keep my mouth shut. Haha. My ball head is a 486RC2, and it is able to take about 2kg with no issues if mounted via the tripod collar. But it slips when mounted via the grip.
    oh nonono... its great that you share information as well...

    i dont like to mount via grip because the grip itself is not very rigidly attached to the body, i actually have gaffered a little on the grip so that when i tighten it on my camera it becomes a little more snug.
    chezburgr i can haz?

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post
    i'm using a manfrot 468, i dont suppose an additional 1kg head would be that bad?
    Its not the problem of weight, but rather the grip that the ballhead provide, if it does not provide an instant grip once tighten, I don think adding another head will help since there will still be force applied and weight of the setup before and while tightening
    Last edited by ExplorerZ; 15th August 2007 at 06:38 AM.

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    Senior Member creampuff's Avatar
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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Time to consider the Manfrotto 468MG Hydrostat Ball Heads perhaps? Tried once on loan and it really locks the setup solid. Not cheap and pretty big size wise.

  15. #15
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    The cheaper manfrotto heads all have this issue - thats why they are cheap. You need to overstimate and then tighten and hope it falls correctly

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by vince123123 View Post
    The cheaper manfrotto heads all have this issue - thats why they are cheap. You need to overstimate and then tighten and hope it falls correctly
    only manfrott heads, or? how abt benro ones? or any brands to recommend?

    i've been looking at kang heads, i hope they arnt classified as "cheap" though? would getting the top end ball head prevent the loss of a fraction of an MM? perhaps not like 1/4 of an mm like i experience, but perhaps 1/8th now? its still quite a bit when you are focussing an objects that are up there in the skies. if a ball head like arca etc can assure me of a 0% movement, then its worth it, but if its still a tiny fraction, and i still have to overestimate, then there's no point at all.

    i'm looking for something that is as flexible as a ball head, but as accurate as that of an altazimuth/equatorial mount?
    chezburgr i can haz?

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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by ExplorerZ View Post
    Its not the problem of weight, but rather the grip that the ballhead provide, if it does not provide an instant grip once tighten, I don think adding another head will help since there will still be force applied and weight of the setup before and while tightening
    hmm.. my idea of 2 heads was actually, use ball head to turn setup, adjust till near the area of interest, lock. so right now i would like to confirm if a supreme ball head would have that instant grip? i think swhyge understands the same problem that i'm facing, just that little micro-scopic slip during tightening that is not visible to the naked eye, not visible at lower focal lengths but visible on higher focal lengths on refractors or reflectors.


    once the ball head is locked in the correct angle, the gear head can then be slightly adjusted, turning the knobs till the subject is locked on?

    is there a complete all in one solution for this? i.e. esp for astronomers who dont like using the Go-to mount, and loves to manually hunt for clusters, stars etc?
    chezburgr i can haz?

  18. #18

    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post
    only manfrott heads, or? how abt benro ones? or any brands to recommend?

    i've been looking at kang heads, i hope they arnt classified as "cheap" though? would getting the top end ball head prevent the loss of a fraction of an MM? perhaps not like 1/4 of an mm like i experience, but perhaps 1/8th now? its still quite a bit when you are focussing an objects that are up there in the skies. if a ball head like arca etc can assure me of a 0% movement, then its worth it, but if its still a tiny fraction, and i still have to overestimate, then there's no point at all.

    i'm looking for something that is as flexible as a ball head, but as accurate as that of an altazimuth/equatorial mount?
    A proper Alt-Az for astronomy is quite flexible because you can disengage the axes and re-engage them for fine adjustment.. The problem of putting a geared head on a ball head is the axes are free to rotate with the ball head and the directions of your control will also change if you tilt the ball head, ,so it's no longer alt-az. But if you polar align, you might get equatorial.

  19. #19
    vince123123
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    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    Not sure about Benro.

    for precise movements like yours its still better to get specilaise equipment.

    I'm not sure but I thought I saw geared heads where you can disengage the gears and move it roughly, and then engage the gears back for fine tuning.

    Quote Originally Posted by psychobiologist View Post
    only manfrott heads, or? how abt benro ones? or any brands to recommend?

    i've been looking at kang heads, i hope they arnt classified as "cheap" though? would getting the top end ball head prevent the loss of a fraction of an MM? perhaps not like 1/4 of an mm like i experience, but perhaps 1/8th now? its still quite a bit when you are focussing an objects that are up there in the skies. if a ball head like arca etc can assure me of a 0% movement, then its worth it, but if its still a tiny fraction, and i still have to overestimate, then there's no point at all.

    i'm looking for something that is as flexible as a ball head, but as accurate as that of an altazimuth/equatorial mount?

  20. #20

    Default Re: Can I be mad and mount a Geared head on a ball head?

    when ur about to lock the ballhead just lock it a bit higher.. or to make it easier you can always buy gitzo ballhead..

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