Carbon Fibre tripods for 20lb +

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by david_simon, May 25, 2020.

  1. David even a used Gitzo Series 5 carbon fiber will run you well over $600.
    Really Right Stuff series 3 pods are supposedly stable enough to manage a ten pound 600 f4 and there is a used first generation (RRS is now on generation Mark 2) Series 3 at KEH right now for for $782 in Ex+ condition.
    I have always thought of a Benbo as a tripod for being creative and allowing unusual angles rather than for heavy lifting.
    If your not going too far from your car a used metal Gitzo series 5 (tele studex) Is reasonable and may be obtainable at a fair price otherwise your talking carbon fiber.
    The Manfrotto U shaped action head is affordable and substantial. I have never heard any criticism of that head.
    Some of the larger used Induro and Benro (probably lifted from the name Benbo) pods may work for you and you could find them at auction or sites like KEH for under $500.
    Make sure you check the specs out before you pull the trigger. Good hunting.
  2. Auction houses seem a good place to pick up used 'pods for not much money. My latest Gitzo buy went for £20 + comission, along with some other antique wooden stands at a local auction. Most photographic auction buyers are collectors, not users, and they simply don't value things like tripods, modern light meters, bags, etc. I put my cheeky bid in just before the hammer went down as 'not sold'.
    2Oceans likes this.
  3. Rodeo,
    The best advice is to know more about the product than the seller. Not a problem with most of the folks here. Every now and then one can hit a home run or find something at auction that is too rare or at a real bargain. Not a big auction user but years ago I got a perfect G340 that had a like new Kirk BH1 head for less than the cost of either new. The head became a favorite in lieu of owned Arca Swiss and RRS heads and for some things like work in rocky streams aluminum legs provide superior anchor and can tolerate getting scratched up more severely than a carbon fiber pod with its layered construction. Since I’m not a pro there is no need to justify what is purchased but still a bargain is a bargain. It seems that Gitzo is now out of the metal tripod business so that will always be a consideration. But parts still abound for many Bogen and Gitzo pods and that is a reason for going with those two makes. Hopefully all my babies will have spare parts well into the future. Good hunting.
  4. David, I hope you have found a new tripod that you like. If you are still looking, I would actually advice against the Manfrotto 055 range - for your use.

    The added weight of a (400mm f/2.8 or a) 600mm f/4 over a 500mm f/4 is too much, especially when we are not talking about the current generation of lenses (which are substantially lighter than their older versions). The current 055 range (alu/cf) is specified to support 9 kg (19.84 Ib), the older 055CB was able to safely support 8 kg (17.64 Ib) if memory serves me right. You are about to place 20 Ib on it and go outdoors in the wind. I would say that Gitzo and probably RRS as well rate their products more conservatively than Manfrotto and many others do.

    The 055 is a very good tripod, I had a 055CB for about 20 years and never had any problems with it. I used it with my Pentax 67, DSLR with 300mm f/2.8 with a 2x teleconverter and it worked fine. I replaced the 055CB with a second hand Induro AT-303 a couple of years ago and added a Wimberley WH-200 head to it. The Induro was much more stable with both the 300 mm, my spotting scope and of course the 600 mm f/4 than the 055 was (I only tried the 055 indoors for evaluation with the 600mm - no wind to makes things worse). I sold the Induro to a friend who wanted the Beike gimbal it came with. He had the Manfrotto 055CXPRO4 and later said the Induro held his 300/2.8, camera and grip more stable when using teleconverters. I was fortunate enough to find an old carbon fibre Gitzo Mountaineer 1325 MkII (the predecessor to the Systematic 3 series) for a very good price, which I have used since with the Wimberley head. It keeps my 600mm f/4 and spotting scope stable in the wind. Bob Aktins concluded it was good enough for the same era of 600mm f/4 lenses: Bob Atkins - Gitzo Carbon Fiber Tripods - 1325 and 1227

    Why not look for a second hand Induro alu/cf tripod or an older Gitzo cf tripod online?

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