How To Hack Your Tripod To Make It Safer And Easier To Use

Ease of use and equipment safety are two things that can always improve our lives as photographers and videographers. With few small add-ons and hacks you can save precious time on your shoots, and on top of that make your camera safer. In the video above, Griffin Hammond is showing you the 2 items that will make your Tripod (and Glidecam, shoulder rig and monopod) just way more user friendly: the Giottos M621 and the Manfrotto 555B. Simple and easy to do. If you use two rigs (or more) on your shoots, the time you'll save is worth the money you'll spend on it.

[Via ISO1200]

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O labă

The quickplate idea is good but to make it better: Use two screws to lock it to another plate so there's no twisting issue.

The ballhead idea....Very bad one. The center point of mass rises due the ballhead so if the tripod is in heavy angle, it will fall down. Second, it's not good for heavy rigs since often, good video head weights over a 2 kilograms and that can cause problems to tripod heads when panning (small movement). Also, with camera, it's not a good choice to go with, it's good for GH2 or maybe even 700D but no for others.

Calumet makes a quick release plate / head assemble that works directly with the Manfrotto 701 heads & 561-HDV monopods. It runs $34 bucks which is slightly more expensive, but you don't have to double up on your Manfrotto heads this way and makes it look a little less 'rigged' - I've been using them trouble free a bit over a year now. Model # CK9007

I also took advantage of these quick release plates when traveling to go between my slider, handheld rig, and tripod so that I can use just one 701 head between all of them.

I converted all of my quick release plates and adapters to Arca Swiss. It was one of the best decisions I've ever made. Additionally, since I don't have a tripod with a built in ball leveler, I got the Acratech leveling base. I had the Manfrotto 438 leveling base but it had too much friction in the head. It was hard to make small adjustments.

I do since I've got one but there's some heavier video heads from manfrotto are still with 3/8" thread and flat base. I'd say that the 701HD is the only videohead which should be used with that method.