d7100 tripod/head problem

Discussion in 'Nikon' started by nigel_farmer, Jun 2, 2013.

  1. I have a giottos carbon fibre mtl 8360b tripod and mh 1302-652 ball head and mh 5001 three way head both of which use the same mh 642 quick release plate. These have served me very well on a d90 and should be able to hold 6kg. However I recently upgraded to a d7100 and I am finding that no matter how tight I tighten the plate onto the camera it is susceptible to slipping when in portrait mode - it doesn't really matter what lens I use. Interestingly I bought the chseap Meike grip, which adds to the weight, but which has rubber on the bottom and this seems to grip the plate better which in turn prevents slipping.
    Any ideas on how I can prevent the plate slippage?
  2. Well.... not a particularly cheap solution, but one that will really work: switch to a head that uses Arca-Swiss-style plates. The plates are specific to the camera, and for sure won't slip. Maybe your current ballhead can be converted to use such plates, worth checking out.
  3. You could try to put a thin piece of rubber in between the camera and the plate. It might help.
  4. Michael's suggestion might work - but I do like Wouter's better. I was never particularly fond of the Manfrotto quick release plates and finally switched to the Arca-Swiss type. It is not an inexpensive proposition though.
  5. You need an L-plate. I put one on all of my Nikon's. (Araca Swiss style head, of course.) They are dedicated to each camera. You couldn't force the camera to swivel with one of those, even if you tried. There are conversions available.
    Kent in SD
  6. Another vote for an Arca-style dedicated camera plate. Kirk do a plain plate as well as an L plate if
    you want to keep it small and cheap. The Really Right Stuff version is just a flat plate, but with an L
    adaptor. If it's portrait mode that's the problem, an L sounds like a good idea, however you get to it.

    Arca clamp replacements exist (cheaply) on eBay - I believe the one I got was by Triopo. I put it on a
    Triopo RS-3 head, which was cheaper and much more solid than my Giottos 1301. I suspect you
    could replace the clamp on a 1302; not so sure about the three-way head. There is an anti-rotation
    (video) pin on the Giottos plates, but I don't know if there's an Arca clamp adaptor with an appropriate
    hole. Some of the Giottos range takes Arca plates - I hope you can find an equivalent if you find you
    want one. (I've yet to be convinced by three-way heads, but each to his own!)

    Good luck with whatever solution you choose.
  7. As others said above, the solution is to make the switch to A-S type plates which prevent twisting, and the most stable kind is an L-plate, such as those from Kirk or RRS, which allow you to mount the camera in vertical orientation without having it hanging off the side of the head. Until you do that, if adding a piece of rubber between the plate and the camera doesn't work, the only thing you can do is to shoot in horizontal position and crop to vertical. Not a great solution with a rectangular-format camera, I know, but you have a lot of resolution with the D7100, so maybe you can afford to lose some. Photographers who use square format cameras do it all the time. BTW, a piece of rubber between the plate and the camera body is more prone to vibration than mounting the plate directly to the camera, and cranking the camera too tightly on the plate can damage the threads.
  8. Thanks for the suggestions. My ball head does creep a bit which was
    really frustrating for macro work which is why I got the 3 way head.
    I'm thinking it might be time to upgrade. Here in the UK you can't get
    really right stuff and only one or two places sell kirk and the prices
    are only a little less in pounds than the dollars prices. I have seen
    positive reviews on the vanguard bbh-200 which I might look into.Am I
    right in saying that a regular kirk plate would solve the problem and
    that the l plate gives added flexibility of not having to readjust the
    head when switching from landscape to portrait mode?
  9. Try this cheap fix:
    Get a rubber or neoprene jar opener. Cut a strip that fits between your camera and the quick release plate; the bigger the better. Punch a hole in the strip for the screw that fits the camera tripod socket. Put the strip between your camera and the plate and tighten the screw.
    If this does not work, go with the expensive solution and replace the head and plate.
  10. Nigel, I am a lot farther away from the USA than you are and I just bought my RRS stuff online
  11. If portraits are your thing, sooner or later you will get a dedicated L-plate. It's much, much more stable, not to mention more convenient.
    Kent in SD
  12. An ad hoc solution is to attach a metal strip to the plate which fits tightly against the base of the camera. That will keep the camera from rotating in the vertical position. A less effective solution is to tilt the camera to the right, so that rotation tends to tighten the screw. It will still slip, but not as much.
    The best solution is to purchase a RRS plate and clamp. The plate is machined to fit the camera tightly without excessive screw tension. Although it's expensive, an L-plate to fit your camera is the ultimate solution. You can fit the camera vertically without "flopping" the head. Everything is balanced, and nothing slips (in the clamp, anyway). Since the weight is directly over the head, there is much less tendency for the head itself to slip.
  13. RRS has a lot of options and at that sort of
    price I would like to see those options in
    person before choosing. The chance of paying an extra 20% on
    import vat weighs against ordering online.
    Kirk, with only 2 options makes it much
    simpler to decide,but the UK price is not
    particularly attractive. If I had a business
    trip to the states planned then these are
    much viable options, but at the moment the
    vanguard is looking more viable - it has a
    good review here on photo.net.
    Another consideration is that In a months
    time I will be going on a workshop for which
    I will be hiring a 70-200 lens. I'm not sure
    that the giottos will do the job. This w/e I
    will get the change to try it with someone s
    300 f4 - someone who uses this with the
    vanguard and d300 and has good things to
    say. The vanguard comes with a plate that I
    could use instead of having to obtain a
    plate for a lens I don't own, plus there is
    no availability here yet for the kirk d7100
    plates.The kirk plate looks like it can be
    converted to an l-plate.
  14. Nigel,
    I'm in Italy where RRS stuff also is not that easy to find. Plus, it's not exactly cheap. Instead, I bought my ballhead and A-S plates via the shop linked to Nikonians.org; they're in Germany and will ship to entire Europe. I've got a Markins Q10 plus the various plates needed for my camera/lenses (Kirk and Markins - both via the same site). I found their prices to be really reasonable. The Q10 takes my 300 f/4 with D700 with ease - at any angle. No creep whatsoever.
    So far, I've been nothing but very happy with my choice for the Markins ballhead - it works excellent.
  15. Nigel: I'm in the UK as well. Dale and Photospecialist provide RRS products in the UK (I got my D800's L plate from Photospecialist - Dale don't seem to have much in stock); my tripod I got straight from RRS. WEx, among others, do Kirk plates, if you'd like to look at some (though as you note the D7100 plate isn't currently in stock there; you're right that the upright appears to decouple).

    If you're looking at the 300 f/4, you may want the Kirk collar replacement for that - for the 300 f/4 and the 70-200, the camera plate will be irrelevant anyway because there are lens collars. I don't own any dedicated lens plates - I have cheap Arca-compatible generic plates. I do have to check they're not coming unscrewed, but because the lens can rotate in its collar there's less of a problem with that because there's very little torque on them (and I can feel them anyway when I pick up the lens).

    My Giottos 1301 was mostly fine with a 150-500, which is bigger than a 70-200; I don't think I've tried it with my 80-200. It does droop a bit; my RS-3 droops less, and (having tried one) an Arca Z1 possibly droops slightly less still, but even it doesn't lock absolutely where I left it during a torture test (150mm f/2.8 supported only by the camera) - though it may have been other parts of my system bending (and a Z1 is twice the size, three times the weight and ten times the price of the RS-3). My solution to the droop was a d4 (see my thread in the accessories forum), but that's vastly more expensive. In real world use (putting the centre of gravity somewhere sensible with a lens collar), sag is less of a problem.

    None of these heads showed any signs of creeping beyond the initial sag as they took the weight, though I wasn't entirely sure of the 1301 with my 200 f/2 on it (people use a 600 f/4 on an RS-3, though I'd always suggest a gimbal head, so I have no qualms about my 200mm). The 1302 may be less strong, but I'd still expect it to cope on a lens with a collar so long as you stay relatively clear of the medium-length exposure danger zone where vibration is an issue.
  16. Thanks again for feedback. I think my immediate need (for the workshop) is will my current head be ok with the D7100/ with the 70-200 that I will hire. I havent got a similarly heavy lens so will try it with a friends 300 f4. At the same time I can try the friends vanguard head.
    Then I need to think about getting a new head that is swiss arca compatible so that I can use plates /l-plates. The silence here on the vanguard would seem to be telling but its price does look attractive. The Markin looks good (great review at nikonians) as does the RRS - I work for a US company so if can wangle a trip stateside or find someone who is making that trip, the price becomes a lot more affordable. Assuming my current head is going to be ok for the workshop, then I have a bit more time to decide.
  17. I look at the dedicated Kirk plate as part of the camera price and a worthwhile safety investment. It is asking a lot of a flat plate to keep from slipping, and I shudder at the amount of torque on the screw needed to keep it from slipping.
  18. Nigel, see http://www.photo.net/equipment/tripods/vanguard/bbh-200-ballhead-review
  19. For what it's worth, I've heard only good thinks about the Vanguard... but I'm not sure how much I've heard other than the photo.net review. If you want to save money, both the RS-3 and the Giottos variants with integrated Arca clamps are cheaper, but may not handle so nicely. Acratech may also be worth a look for that style of design, but may be too expensive. Markins generally get glowing reviews (as do the RRS heads), but in the UK it's hard to get much exposure to either.
  20. ShunCheung

    ShunCheung Administrator

    Arca-Swiss type quick-release plates is the defecto industry standard. If you are serious about photography, my suggestion is that the sooner you adopt that system, the better off you are. I use Really Right Stuff plates, but there are a few other options such as Kirk, as mentioned above.
    I have the RRS L plates for the D7000 as well as D7100, but I am sure other brands are fine also. In both cases they are two-piece plates as the vertical part is detechable, for easier access to microphone jacks, etc. I find that helpful when I shoot video. However, IMO RRS has a bit of a design flaw as it is fairly easy to lose the screw (one screw for the D7100 L plate, two screws for the D7000 version) that connects the two parts together.
  21. I've always been surprised that the bottom plate of cameras has only really every had one 1/4" BSW threaded socket. It's just inviting itself to be a bearing, ie allow rotation.
    Why is there no decent un-threaded socket, in-line with the tripod socket, ie parallel with the sensor plane, at the other end of the body.. or even one at each end of the body. That couldn't possible rotate then. The in-line with the sensor-axis would ensure vertical portrait shots with no droop around the tripod socket.
    I know there is a small bare socket some-where on the bottom plate of all my Nikon DSLRs, but it's pretty random, and model specific.
    If the spacing was maintained between bodies, there would be no need for camera specific plates, as such, just a universal QRP. Bad financially, good practically!
    Sadly, it's a very well established built-in design flaw shared by nearly all manufacturers. Single-point support...quick but flawed.. Bit like a spanner whose parallel faces are the same spacing as the parallel sides of a nut. All the force is concentrated on the corners and very soon rounded off, especially if a worn or over-size spanner is used. Use one of the new crescent headed spanners that's opposing faces are convex curves, with min spacing the same parallel distance as the nut's flats. All the force is now on the centre of the flat. Obvious really, but the Victorian's never thought of it or if one of them did, someone ignored basic engineering design!
  22. For what it's worth, my Pentax 645 does have an anti-rotation lug on it. It also has two tripod sockets, so you can put two QR plates on it rather than getting an L plate. I'd like to think that there's no reason a DSLR couldn't be arranged to work like this, although keeping cables away from the tripod socket and the hand grip might be awkward (at least there's no film cannister in the way, as with a film SLR). Still, I doubt RRS and Kirk are complaining about the current situation!
  23. Do the L-plates to fit the D7100 utilize the little secondary socket on the base-plate or brace off the body somewhere?

    Still, I doubt RRS and Kirk are complaining about the current situation!​
    I don't suppose Nikon has shares in Kirk or RRS..:)

    .......It would explain why they seem to have trouble making decent lens foot>tripod mounts!
  24. The only plates I've seen for the D7100 do what the plates for the D800 do: have a lip that runs along the edge of the body. (The Kirk D800 plate seems to grip on both sides, but is quite short; I went with the RRS design because it would have a better grip if I used it in cabled mode, but there's not much in it.) I've never even really noticed the holes in the bottom of the cameras; I assume they're either buried screws or for the battery grip (I don't have my camera with me to check and I can't tell from the photos I can find). It's true that they probably ought to work as anti-rotation devices. Most L plates I've seen need to slide so that cables can be attached, and that might be why people tend to avoid a pin-style anti-rotate? I'm guessing.
  25. Well I tried my current head with the 300 f4
    and it was OK so it should be fine for my
    workshop. I really like the look of the
    markins heads, not so much the price in

Share This Page