Chinese tripods?

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#82
Sorry to be pedantic but Aluminium is reactive. Aluminium is directly below magnesium in 'metal activity series' listings. It just forms a fairly inert oxide layer that protects the metal underneath, get a little mercury on the surface (which disrupts the oxide layer) and it will corrode through fairly rapidly.
Well your username does seem to back up your statement but is spilling mercury on your tripod a common problem and should you not have bigger concerns if so? :p
 

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#83
Sorry to be pedantic but Aluminium is reactive. Aluminium is directly below magnesium in 'metal activity series' listings. It just forms a fairly inert oxide layer that protects the metal underneath, get a little mercury on the surface (which disrupts the oxide layer) and it will corrode through fairly rapidly.

All my tripods have been brought used, making the costs more reasonable.
Ah that's what I have been doing wrong. I should stop cleaning my tripod with Mercury :D
 
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#84
Well your username does seem to back up your statement but is spilling mercury on your tripod a common problem and should you not have bigger concerns if so? :p
I am quite happy with high grade aluminium and it's chemistry which I am fully aware of.
I am also more than happy to stay well away from mercury and it's compounds
 
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#85
I am quite happy with high grade aluminium and it's chemistry which I am fully aware of.
I am also more than happy to stay well away from mercury and it's compounds
You will probably be successful though mercury has a long relationship to photographers who use tripods, as in mercury vapour and daguerreotypes ;).
I’m not sure photo collodion plates were ever produced by floating on mercury (usually just poured on and run off AFAIK) but it could have been a useful technique. I used to prepare collodion membranes on circles of plate glass which were floated on several litres of mercury to keep them level while the solvents evaporated. No elfin safety then :D.
 
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#86
Well your username does seem to back up your statement but is spilling mercury on your tripod a common problem and should you not have bigger concerns if so? :p
Indeed it's not likely to be an issue for tripods & the concerns would be more for your health give the nastiness of mercury fumes.
In refineries there have been heat exchanger failures caused by sub parts per million levels of mercury in the feedstocks passing through, but I don't expect anyone will have millions of tonnes of oil going over their tripods either...
 
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#87
There is a photo of a man sitting on a pool of mercury in Nat Geo 1972 magazine. You can easily find a copy on internet. I remember this clearly from a health and safety talk years ago. Did you ever wonder how some places got gold-plated roof? Well those workers apparently did not live to long age...
Anyway all of this is mostly just a scary thought or memory but not entirely, and it's not just the nice and sealed thermometer. What a looney world we live in.

As I already said this stuff is not coming near me (ever again) or my photographic gear. I don't particularly like any poisons and toxins if you know me.

You will probably be successful though mercury has a long relationship to photographers
And not only that. Remember nitrocellulose? Good job I only use digital.
 
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#88
[QUOTE="LongLensPhotography, And not only that. Remember nitrocellulose? Good job I only use digital.[/QUOTE]

Do you shoot guns? Play cards, Read glossy magazines? Have hard topped Kitchen surfaces etc etc? Watch out for that Nitrocellulose!
 
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#92
There is a photo of a man sitting on a pool of mercury in Nat Geo 1972 magazine. You can easily find a copy on internet. I remember this clearly from a health and safety talk years ago. Did you ever wonder how some places got gold-plated roof? Well those workers apparently did not live to long age...
><
And not only that. Remember nitrocellulose? Good job I only use digital.
Umm, collodion=nitrocellulose aka gun cotton etc. I never sat in the mercury (physically impossible) but I can remember plunging my hand in to feel the odd sensation of such a dense liquid. Of course there was always mercury globules knocking about from broken thermometers in those days .
 
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#93
(Back on topic..)

Has anyone found a UK distributor who sells Leofoto tripods?
Wex have a very limited range of Leofoto tripods and heads.

I recently bought a Leofoto travel tripod and ballhead from eBay (LS-284C & LH-30). The build quality is excellent, I would say better than the Manfrotto (190CF) and Sirui (W2204) tripods that I have. The only problem is that it's too short for regular use, only 125cm. So, I'm considering buying their new LM-324C tripod as my primary tripod, unfortunately I can't find for sale anywhere at the moment. :(
 
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#94
Wex have a very limited range of Leofoto tripods and heads.

I recently bought a Leofoto travel tripod and ballhead from eBay (LS-284C & LH-30). The build quality is excellent, I would say better than the Manfrotto (190CF) and Sirui (W2204) tripods that I have. The only problem is that it's too short for regular use, only 125cm. So, I'm considering buying their new LM-324C tripod as my primary tripod, unfortunately I can't find for sale anywhere at the moment. :(
Did you consider the Urban series? I was looking at the LX-225CT - mainly for use as a travel tripod. Wex and LCE sell it. There’s barely any reviews on them though - like 1 guy on FredMiranda, but that’s it! More info or videos on the ballhead would be nice
 
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#95
Did you consider the Urban series? I was looking at the LX-225CT - mainly for use as a travel tripod. Wex and LCE sell it. There’s barely any reviews on them though - like 1 guy on FredMiranda, but that’s it! More info or videos on the ballhead would be nice
I was specifically looking at lightweight models with no centre column, so that ruled out the urban range.

I couldn't find many reviews either, in the end it was this site that convinced me that the leofoto was worth a punt.
https://thecentercolumn.com/rankings/travel-tripod-rankings/
 
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#96
never sat in the mercury (physically impossible) b
It must be possible considering this guy sat posing for an image. Mercury had very high surface tension, so just like insects can walk on water you should be able to float on mercury
 
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#97
It must be possible considering this guy sat posing for an image. Mercury had very high surface tension, so just like insects can walk on water you should be able to float on mercury
Oh yes that’s possible. I meant physically impossible for me to do it back then since the mercury was in a largish glass dessicator on a lab bench.:D
 
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#98
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#99
Regarding tripods I far prefer my Sirui to my Gitzo.

But maybe @johnf3f could help with his experience of older Gitzos please?

The star headed bolts that tighten from each side to hold the legs onto the centre plate are either too tight and the legs won’t move, certainly not smoothly. Or, slackened off a hair they come loose and the legs flop around.

I have stripped it all down previously, do you think I need new washers from previous over tightening crushing them? Or are the bolts stretch bolts? Just wondered if you’d had any experience on this front.

May be slightly of topic but for @LongLensPhotography information it would be good to know, with this issue resolved the secondhand Gitzo would be a good option.

Without it I find it a pain, quite literally when it traps your fingers, to use. The sirui has no such issues, but it does have a centre column unfortunately.

Regarding EF system becoming redundant, if you want to stick with DSLR for a bit longer switch to a Nikon D850. They are 10 years ahead of Canon anyway so that should future proof you for a while.
 
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Regarding tripods I far prefer my Sirui to my Gitzo.

But maybe @johnf3f could help with his experience of older Gitzos please?

The star headed bolts that tighten from each side to hold the legs onto the centre plate are either too tight and the legs won’t move, certainly not smoothly. Or, slackened off a hair they come loose and the legs flop around.

I have stripped it all down previously, do you think I need new washers from previous over tightening crushing them? Or are the bolts stretch bolts? Just wondered if you’d had any experience on this front.
I'd try fitting some spring washers, it's not a big investment,and stands a good chance of improving things :cool:
 
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Without it I find it a pain, quite literally when it traps your fingers, to use. The sirui has no such issues, but it does have a centre column unfortunately.

Regarding EF system becoming redundant, if you want to stick with DSLR for a bit longer switch to a Nikon D850. They are 10 years ahead of Canon anyway so that should future proof you for a while.
Maybe just lithium grease would do the job with the washers...

I seriously don't like the look of Sirui tripod column plates. It may be the same as Rollei, particularly if its convertible to monopod.

Nikon old format: I will probably get it in 3 years time for pennies on the pound. Shame there is no decent 16-35 which negates the appeal of the system for work. I think Canon is better for glass in many areas.
By the way they are ahead of Canon with their move to mirrorless if only by 2 days!
 
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Regarding tripods I far prefer my Sirui to my Gitzo.

But maybe @johnf3f could help with his experience of older Gitzos please?

The star headed bolts that tighten from each side to hold the legs onto the centre plate are either too tight and the legs won’t move, certainly not smoothly. Or, slackened off a hair they come loose and the legs flop around.

I have stripped it all down previously, do you think I need new washers from previous over tightening crushing them? Or are the bolts stretch bolts? Just wondered if you’d had any experience on this front.

May be slightly of topic but for @LongLensPhotography information it would be good to know, with this issue resolved the secondhand Gitzo would be a good option.

Without it I find it a pain, quite literally when it traps your fingers, to use. The sirui has no such issues, but it does have a centre column unfortunately.

Regarding EF system becoming redundant, if you want to stick with DSLR for a bit longer switch to a Nikon D850. They are 10 years ahead of Canon anyway so that should future proof you for a while.
My oldest Gitzo (G1329 Mk2) had conventional cap head nuts to control leg tension - they work very well. The newer ones do have the "star headed" bolts and, like you, I am not keen on them. The main problem is that the supplied wrenches are a poor fit which equates to skinned knuckles and burred bolt heads! However any "El Cheapo" star bits will fit very nicely and allow you to adjust the friction to your preference. They can very easily be replaced by 6mm mushroom headed Allen bolts but I only found the need for that on the top plate locking bolt for Systemastic tripods.

Once I had adjusted the top leg bolts to my preference I just left them alone until they loosened - I have been waiting 13 years and have yet to need to readjust any of mine. The "Star Bolts" are a bit of a pain but once you have them set as you want/like then just forget about them for a decade or two.
 
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I’ve been looking for a while for one with no centre column with flat base/or bowl. German or Chinese models.

List I came up with:

Feisol CT-3442 - 1.14kg/ 140cm max / 49cm folded / £380
FLM CP30 M4 II - 1.46kg / 163cm max / 57cm folded / £490
Innorel RT80C - 1.52kg / 160cm max / 55 folded / £130
Leofoto LS-324CEX - 1.56kg / 152cm max / 56 cm folded / £415
Leofoto LM-324C - 1.62kg / 145cm max / 52cm folded £400?
Leofoto LS-324C - 1.38kg / 130cm max / 48cm folded / £350 with ball head
Leofoto LS-365C - 1.77kg / 152cm max / 48cm folded / £320

Benro, Sirui, Induro and a few others don’t really offer anything or are 1.9kg+ without head.

Max/Min Leg diameters (mm)
Feisol CT-3442 - 28/? (not stated) 16-18mm - 4 section
FLM CP30 M4 II - 30/18 - 4 section
Innorel RT80C - 32/22 - 4 section
Leofoto LS-324CEX - 32/22 - 4 section
Leofoto LM-324C - 32/22 - 4 section
Leofoto LS-324C - 32/22 - 4 section
Leofoto LS-365C - 36/22 - 5 section

I’m considering the Leofoto LS-324 or LS-365 and adding a leveling base.

The LS-365 is 5 section and would this effect stability/rigidity? Considering they both have the same diameter smallest leg section.

The LS-324CEX has a built in leveling base but if it went faulty then it’s knackered. If I add a leveling base to one of the two above at least it can be replaced separately.

The Innorel RT80C seems like it’d be worth a go, reviews seem fairly good from most Amazon/AliExpress reviews.
 
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Leofoto tripod does look good and reviews seem to be on the rare side however it seems positive.

Yes there aren’t many about. I was mainly judging off thecentrecolumn charts. I don’t think they are influenced in any way.


Be aware of the fake reviews.
Almost certainly... most of the play/instability comes from the slip joints and not the tubing diameter. But this can be reduced significantly simply by not extending the sections completely when you don't need to.
https://www.talkphotography.co.uk/threads/the-secret-to-tripod-stability.635490/
Makes it more difficult to decide. I think maybe the extra 10-12cm of height would be more beneficial on the 5 sections, than the stability when I could just extend the sections less in windy conditions.

Will have a read through that thread and see if it sways me.
 
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