Ugly Hedgehog® - Photography Forum
need a gimbal head for a Manfrotto.
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Aug 26, 2012 15:48:07   #
JC56 Loc: Lake St.Louis mo.
 
I'm looking to buy a decent gimbal head for a manfrotto tripod. I don't want to spend 600 to 700 on a wimberly any suggestions? I use a pentax kr with a sigma 150 to 500 lens....... weight is about 6 to 7 lbs. I shoot BIFS and other fast moving objects. Thanks

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Aug 26, 2012 17:23:27   #
MT Shooter Loc: Montana
 
JC56 wrote:
I'm looking to buy a decent gimbal head for a manfrotto tripod. I don't want to spend 600 to 700 on a wimberly any suggestions? I use a pentax kr with a sigma 150 to 500 lens....... weight is about 6 to 7 lbs. I shoot BIFS and other fast moving objects. Thanks


I use a Desmond Gimbal design on a Manfrotto/Bogen 3246 tripod for my Sigma 150-500mm lens. It makes for a very handy combo. The Desmond sells for around $135 and comes with the Arca style mount. I found this was very easy to adapt for using the Bogen hex plates that I use on all my Bogen ball heads and pan heads. That makes for very easy interchangeability. This gimbal design also works quite well with my Nikon 300mm F2.8 prime, but is not heavy enough for my Nikon 500mm F4 or Sigma 800mm F5.6 primes, those extra heavy lenses require a Wimberly type design to support them properly.

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Aug 26, 2012 17:28:53   #
JC56 Loc: Lake St.Louis mo.
 
Thanks for the advice! $135 sounds reasonable.

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Aug 27, 2012 12:53:51   #
Audwulf Loc: Golden State
 
Manfrotto 393 . $ 174.00 on Ebay.



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Aug 27, 2012 14:19:39   #
Audwulf Loc: Golden State
 
Forgot this the first time.



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Aug 27, 2012 16:55:37   #
Teacher Loc: Alabama
 
Check this one out. http://opteka.com/gh1.aspx

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Aug 27, 2012 22:40:46   #
JC56 Loc: Lake St.Louis mo.
 
Audwulf wrote:
Forgot this the first time.


Dumb question.....just how do these gimbal heads work.....and why are they so expensive? I know they work.......... I need an explanation for the war department (AKA wife)

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Aug 27, 2012 22:56:00   #
Dback4430 Loc: Lockport Il
 
JC56 wrote:
Audwulf wrote:
Forgot this the first time.


Dumb question.....just how do these gimbal heads work.....and why are they so expensive? I know they work.......... I need an explanation for the war department (AKA wife)

Good stuff

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Aug 28, 2012 13:45:38   #
Audwulf Loc: Golden State
 
Hey JC,
With large lenses on your camera, like the one in the photo, you have a bulky, some times difficult package to hold, and try to focus, and change focal length, all at the same time.So you use the gimbal as a third hand. Used on a tripod, they allow you to get amazing, sharp long range photos. Used on a monopod, they allow you to take your camera "Off the road" so to speak, and still get support for this some times cumbersome load. They are expensive, because the good ones are made of aircraft grade aluminum, and some times magnesium. I made one that looks like the Manfrotto 393 out of 1/8 X 1" bar stock aluminum. I had an old Macro slider I use to adjust the camera balance point when I change focal lengths. It saves a lot of muscle power, as even light weight cameras and long lenses get heavy after a long day of shooting. Especially if you are trekking around a place like Yosemite.

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Aug 28, 2012 19:59:01   #
JC56 Loc: Lake St.Louis mo.
 
Thanks for the info....but say I point it up 30* and take my hand off the camera.....is the camera going to stay at 30* or come back to level?

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Aug 28, 2012 20:02:18   #
Audwulf Loc: Golden State
 
Hey JC,
The two knobs at the top of the "U", are friction/locking knobs. Also, the mounting plate can be adjusted to shift the balance point of the camera to just about any position.

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Aug 28, 2012 20:03:38   #
JC56 Loc: Lake St.Louis mo.
 
So I guess you can adjust the tension?

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Aug 28, 2012 20:05:19   #
Audwulf Loc: Golden State
 
Yep, I also edited the info.

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Aug 28, 2012 20:08:38   #
MT Shooter Loc: Montana
 
JC56 wrote:
Thanks for the info....but say I point it up 30* and take my hand off the camera.....is the camera going to stay at 30* or come back to level?


Any true Ginbal head, when properly balanced for the camera/lens load, will stay in the position in which it is released, that is the very idea of a Gimbal design. If you feel you have to work to control the camera and lens, the you have the wrong head, or the wrong balance. A properly adjusted and balanced Gimbal setup will feel very fluid, smooth, and natural to use.

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Aug 28, 2012 20:18:32   #
Audwulf Loc: Golden State
 
A true gimbal will return to the horizontal plane when released. To elevate the lens, which JC asked about, you either have to lock down the tension screws, or shift the balance of the camera.

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