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Old Dec 10, 2012, 05:44 AM   #1
Phrasikleia
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Another Gitzo tripod bites the dust.

Some of you may remember my thread from two years ago about the material failure (and warranty repair troubles) that I experienced with my first Gitzo tripod. Just last night I had a second one fail in a similar way, this time a 2-Series carbon fiber model:



And I came across a thread on another forum with several other people reporting precisely this failure with the same model (GT-2531): http://www.latogaphoto.com/2009/12/p...-gitzo-tripod/

I had a 5D Mark III with a 17-40 f/4L mounted on it, so it was nowhere near to being overloaded. Like the other people in that thread, I was using it in the cold (-11 C) and simply pushed down on it a bit as I always do to ensure that it was stable--something one ought to be able to do with a tripod. I always carry it in a padded bag and am very gentle with my equipment. I did absolutely nothing in the least bit abusive to it.

I'm now wondering if maybe I should switch brands. I'm not sure I can trust Gitzo anymore so long as they are using this apparently fragile alloy to hold the legs together. I paid good money for Gitzo tripods because I wanted equipment that would not let me down.

Should I be considering a switch to RRS? It looks like they don't quite have a comparable set of legs (something that stands as tall and is just as light). Has anyone had any problems with a RRS tripod? Any other suggestions for me?
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 06:11 AM   #2
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It's a predictable response, but why not Manfrotto? I've had one for years and it has withstood everything.

It is used with a 808RC4 head or a wimberley and usually carries a big super-telephoto Nikon lens of some form or another and a D3s or something else like that. I know the 055XPROB I have won't be ideal for hiking, it's heavy - but it's damn solid.

You got lucky that you caught it (I assume you did) rather than having it fail spectacularly while the camera is on bulb doing a long-exposure.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 06:36 AM   #3
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It's a predictable response, but why not Manfrotto? I've had one for years and it has withstood everything.

It is used with a 808RC4 head or a wimberley and usually carries a big super-telephoto Nikon lens of some form or another and a D3s or something else like that. I know the 055XPROB I have won't be ideal for hiking, it's heavy - but it's damn solid.

You got lucky that you caught it (I assume you did) rather than having it fail spectacularly while the camera is on bulb doing a long-exposure.
That last time I looked, Manfrotto didn't have a comparable tripod. My GT-2531 stands 54.3" high with the column down, which puts the eyepiece of my camera at about 64" high with the ballhead under it. And I get all of that height out of the legs with only 3lbs of weight to schlepp around (not including the ballhead).

Also, I really dislike the leg locks that Manfrotto uses. I always used to pinch my fingers in locks like that. Plus they're bulky. I much prefer the Gitzo G-locks. I actually liked everything about my GT-2531. It ticked all the right boxes for me.

Yes, I did get lucky. It didn't fall, probably because the snow was keeping the legs from slipping away. I was wearing snowshoes at the time, so if it did fall spectacularly, I wouldn't have been very nimble about catching it. I actually have a photo of me shooting when the tripod broke. I'll share it here just for kicks...

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Old Dec 10, 2012, 06:38 AM   #4
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Bleh stupid cast collar pieces. I'm not sure what I'd suggest in tripods today. Manfrotto is under the same ownership. I tried the RRS pano head prior to the addition of the really heavy one they label as a Gimbal. I needed something to help make spherical hdris. It was nicely machined, but the puny locks could not properly support a 1DS. It was just irritating that when I told them what I owned, they didn't mention that it might be too much for the kit. The other problem I had with it was the L bracket had a little bit of flex, which only really bothered me as I needed to stitch images. I haven't tried anything from them since. The quality of the overall kit seemed good. It just wasn't designed for heavier cameras. I haven't tried any of their legsets or ball heads.

I can think of one that would probably hold up really well in the cold, but I don't think you'd like the idea. I don't think I'd want to to haul haul one of those either along with everything else. I sort of included it as a joke. I haven't seen one in use in a really really long time. I did find a few pages of discussion on another forum involving gitzo and RRS. It doesn't have much, but a couple people on there seemed to like RRS. You could probably inquire how hard they've used them.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 06:55 AM   #5
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Bleh stupid cast collar pieces. I'm not sure what I'd suggest in tripods today. Manfrotto is under the same ownership. I tried the RRS pano head prior to the addition of the really heavy one they label as a Gimbal. I needed something to help make spherical hdris. It was nicely machined, but the puny locks could not properly support a 1DS. It was just irritating that when I told them what I owned, they didn't mention that it might be too much for the kit. The other problem I had with it was the L bracket had a little bit of flex, which only really bothered me as I needed to stitch images. I haven't tried anything from them since. The quality of the overall kit seemed good. It just wasn't designed for heavier cameras. I haven't tried any of their legsets or ball heads.

I can think of one that would probably hold up really well in the cold, but I don't think you'd like the idea. I don't think I'd want to to haul haul one of those either along with everything else. I sort of included it as a joke. I haven't seen one in use in a really really long time. I did find a few pages of discussion on another forum involving gitzo and RRS. It doesn't have much, but a couple people on there seemed to like RRS. You could probably inquire how hard they've used them.
Yeah, it's hard to beat one of those old-school wooden tripods, but they weigh more than I do!

Could you elaborate on the problem you had with the RRS locks? Is this something I might encounter with my kit? Or is this just a ballhead issue?

Thanks for the Fred Miranda link. I'll look through that thread for nuggets of wisdom. I'm particularly keen to find some comparisons of the leg locks (RRS vs. Gitzo), so maybe that will be in there.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 07:07 AM   #6
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That's too bad about your Gitzo Phrasikleia. It's always disappointing when your equipment lets you down…especially when you believe you've invested in the best.

My tripod story (not that this will necessarily help you but may be food for thought for others)…

I had been using an older and not so sturdy tripod but as I upgraded to a newer, heavier and more valuable camera and lenses, it was time to upgrade my tripod as well.

A couple months ago I was browsing in a second-hand store and noticed a number of tripods. The store owner told me he gets a lot of them as it's one of those things that many people buy but few actually use (???). I went through his inventory and found one that I thought would suit me well. It was coated with layers of dirt but appeared to be mechanically sound. The price tag was $30 (Cdn), I offered $20…done deal.

I took it home and spent 20 minutes cleaning it up and adapting an old camera neck strap as a sling-style carry strap. Granted, it's not the lightest on the market nor is it ball head but it's aluminum, very sturdy, extends high enough for someone 7 ft. (without extending the centre post) and has a wonderful panning mechanism (I think it may have been designed for commercial video).

I don't like to buy used camera equipment as I'm a bit anal about potential problems that I can't see, warranties, etc. However, the bottom line is: $20 and 20 minutes for an awesome tripod that should last for many years leaves me wondering if spending the money for the best is always the best solution.

Btw, looking forward to seeing the post of your shot above...should be amazing!

Last edited by Cheese&Apple; Dec 10, 2012 at 07:16 AM.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 07:12 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Phrasikleia View Post
Yeah, it's hard to beat one of those old-school wooden tripods, but they weigh more than I do!

Could you elaborate on the problem you had with the RRS locks? Is this something I might encounter with my kit? Or is this just a ballhead issue?
It was one of these. The parts fit together really well. It didn't mention weight or torque limits. I called prior to ordering and they thought it would be fine. With a 1DS + 17-40L or 70-200 F4 (I like the lighter version) the little screw locks were basically at their limit. It did fit together well. It didn't seem to creep when I tightened things down. Their quality did seem good. It's just with that one, it wasn't designed for the weight I was using. They came out with a heavier option much later, but I haven't tried it. I have not tried their ball heads. I have an old Cambo ball head (largest one) that I need to replace. It's not that amazing. Anyway they were nicely machined and fit together exceptionally well. Their legsets are rated for quite a bit of weight, so you might do well there. The design on the RRS legsets looks slightly different in the spot where yours broke.


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Thanks for the Fred Miranda link. I'll look through that thread for nuggets of wisdom. I'm particularly keen to find some comparisons of the leg locks (RRS vs. Gitzo), so maybe that will be in there.
Well I read the thread there before linking it. It was somewhat opinionative, but I figured you could always try signing up there and asking some of them. It's just a much smaller company, so I don't see the name come up constantly.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 07:26 AM   #8
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I LOVE my RRS sticks. I keep trying to find an excuse to buy another set, they are so well-engineered, constructed and aesthetically awesome. Apart from the price, I haven't found anything negative to say for them. Like all RRS products, made completely in the USA.
I only have kept my other Gitzo sticks (for travel/hiking) because RRS doesn't make anything quite as light.

I also have and use their ballheads and L-plates, which I also consider top-notch, for the reasons listed above. I can't imagine how one of their solid aluminum machined L-plates could have "flex".
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 07:47 AM   #9
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Granted, it's not the lightest on the market nor is it ball head but it's aluminum, very sturdy, extends high enough for someone 7 ft. (without extending the centre post) and has a wonderful panning mechanism (I think it may have been designed for commercial video).

I don't like to buy used camera equipment as I'm a bit anal about potential problems that I can't see, warranties, etc. However, the bottom line is: $20 and 20 minutes for an awesome tripod that should last for many years leaves me wondering if spending the money for the best is always the best solution.

Btw, looking forward to seeing the post of your shot above...should be amazing!
Thanks for the encouraging anecdote, Cheese&Apple. I have no problem at all with buying used equipment, but I really do need my tripod to be lightweight. I have a closet full of old tripods that do not meet my needs for one reason or another. I use them as light stands now.

And thanks for the optimism about the photo I was taking. I'm too miffed to process it right now. I feel bereft at the loss of such an important piece of gear!

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I LOVE my RRS sticks. I keep trying to find an excuse to buy another set, they are so well-engineered, constructed and aesthetically awesome. Apart from the price, I haven't found anything negative to say for them. Like all RRS products, made completely in the USA.
I only have kept my other Gitzo sticks (for travel/hiking) because RRS doesn't make anything quite as light.
Thanks for the info. I am leaning towards RRS right now. Unfortunately, "travel/hiking" describes the majority of my shooting needs. I fly a lot and backpack a lot. I also shoot on a lot of hillsides where I want to see over trees and need all of the height I can get. The Gitzo 2531 was great for me up until it became a "duo-pod" last night.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 08:13 AM   #10
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From my limited experience with them, if I did not have Gitzo, I would go with a Feisol CT-3301 or similar model that will run around $300 instead of $900 for Gitzo. Feisol seems to be good kit.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 08:55 AM   #11
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After going through a few tripods I have settled with a heavy Manfrotto for the studio and use the cheap Hama Traveller Compact Pro for moving around. I actually have several of them in different places (one permanently in my car etc) and consider them to be pretty much disposable. They are tall enough for me and hold a good weight although there is a bit of flex in the legs. What I really like though is the price because I don't have to worry about putting them in the sea, mud or sand and as soon as something breaks I throw it and get out a new one. I can get through about 20 of them for the price of one Gitzo!
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 09:20 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Phrasikleia View Post
Should I be considering a switch to RRS? It looks like they don't quite have a comparable set of legs (something that stands as tall and is just as light). Has anyone had any problems with a RRS tripod? Any other suggestions for me?
Ugh! After two, I'd be out too- fortunately my Gitzo is holding up, and it doesn't get babied at all- quite the opposite! A quick Google of "Feisol broken tripod," "Benro broken tripod," and "RRS broken tripod" shows the former two breaking and the latter being used as a replacement for broken tripods- I think that's about as good as it's going to get- but I'd call and talk to RRS and see how they are to deal with.

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Old Dec 10, 2012, 09:20 AM   #13
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I would contact Gitzo and if they give you a hard time: start shopping for a new tripod from company "X". This failure is unacceptable! Maybe Gitzo can right the wrong with little fuss? If one has to 'fight' with a manufacturer to honor a repair, such is never fun and often is a bad business practice.

I hope you can work it out and continue with your life/job! Dealing with these problems is never fun, I feel for you big time. Maybe the cold weather was a culprit? After reading your other thread, maybe it was just bad quality control and this was a fluke? But twice within a few years? Maybe we can rule out fluke? Keep us posted, as I am a Gitzo tripod owner and would love to know how they deal with this issue.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 10:08 AM   #14
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Hi Phrasikleia, sorry to hear your GT-2531 bit the dust. I'm shooting with the same model of tripod so I'll be extra careful now in cold weather. I read the link you posted and it sounds like one person was able to contact Manfrotto to get a fast repair/replacement for their Gitzo tripod. Being that your tripod is likely still under warranty, are you willing to consider that option? If you have sworn off Gitzo, you could at least get it replaced for free and sell it to offset your next purchase of another brand.

I don't have experience with RRS tripods, but I do have experience with their ballheads, bubble level plates and (lack of) customer service. Their equipment chips far too easily in my opinion, because their anodization seems to be too thin. When I purchased my 5D3 I ended up getting a Kirk plate and it is vastly more resilient. On top of that, RRS customer service was adversarial and refused to consider the easy chipping a manufacturing defect, despite the level plate being only a couple weeks old. Apparently to them it's a feature to have easily-damaged equipment. I simply haven't had this problem with other brands of camera equipment, so I can't recommend RRS.

Check out Induro tripods if you get a chance. I found them after purchasing my GT-2531 and they appear to be quite nice for the money. I haven't used one yet however.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 10:29 AM   #15
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I would contact Gitzo and if they give you a hard time: start shopping for a new tripod from company "X". This failure is unacceptable! Maybe Gitzo can right the wrong with little fuss? If one has to 'fight' with a manufacturer to honor a repair, such is never fun and often is a bad business practice.

I hope you can work it out and continue with your life/job! Dealing with these problems is never fun, I feel for you big time. Maybe the cold weather was a culprit? After reading your other thread, maybe it was just bad quality control and this was a fluke? But twice within a few years? Maybe we can rule out fluke? Keep us posted, as I am a Gitzo tripod owner and would love to know how they deal with this issue.
Yeah, I think the cold weather has a lot to do with it. Both of the times that I had a Gitzo fail like this, I was shooting in very cold weather. The other people reporting the same problem in that thread I linked to above likewise were shooting in low temps.

I will definitely report back about the warranty experience on this one. My situation is very complicated because I split my time between two continents. I purchased the tripod in the US, but at the moment I'm in Europe, where the warranty is no good. So I either have to get the tripod to Bogen/Manfrotto in New Jersey for repairs or else I have to pay to have it serviced here in Europe. Either way, I'm probably going to be without it for at least a month, especially with the holidays coming up. And of course I have a big photo trip coming up soon...Murphy's Law at its best...

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Hi Phrasikleia, sorry to hear your GT-2531 bit the dust. I'm shooting with the same model of tripod so I'll be extra careful now in cold weather. I read the link you posted and it sounds like one person was able to contact Manfrotto to get a fast repair/replacement for their Gitzo tripod. Being that your tripod is likely still under warranty, are you willing to consider that option? If you have sworn off Gitzo, you could at least get it replaced for free and sell it to offset your next purchase of another brand.

I don't have experience with RRS tripods, but I do have experience with their ballheads, bubble level plates and (lack of) customer service. Their equipment chips far too easily in my opinion, because their anodization seems to be too thin. When I purchased my 5D3 I ended up getting a Kirk plate and it is vastly more resilient. On top of that, RRS customer service was adversarial and refused to consider the easy chipping a manufacturing defect, despite the level plate being only a couple weeks old. Apparently to them it's a feature to have easily-damaged equipment. I simply haven't had this problem with other brands of camera equipment, so I can't recommend RRS.

Check out Induro tripods if you get a chance. I found them after purchasing my GT-2531 and they appear to be quite nice for the money. I haven't used one yet however.
Many thanks for the info, jabbott. Yes, I'll definitely get the Gitzo repaired under warranty. If I could get it immediately, I'd probably just go on using it, but it took them well over a month last time to get my repair done. If I do replace it with something else, then I'll either keep the Gitzo as back-up or will sell it. It will go in for warranty repair, though.

Edit: Could you elaborate on the "chipping" of the RRS item you purchased? Was this a cosmetic or functional problem? Either way, your description of their customer service is very worrisome.

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Old Dec 10, 2012, 10:48 AM   #16
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I don't know you would ever really trust a Gitzo again. Even in a best case scenario... Gitzo replaces your tripod, perhaps even with an upgrade... will you every really be able to stand there, waiting for the light, and not be thinking to yourself that perhaps the camera is about to fall.

My feeling is that Gitzo is going to have to much much more than just replace the tripod for you to have any confidence in it. And if you aren't confident in the tripod, how is that going to affect your shooting?

I don't have alternative to offer, sorry. I happen to use a Gitzo... but it's not one of the light carbon fibre jobs as I don't need light. However, I'll ask my friend who shoots in similar conditions as you do. He researches his purchases thoroughly.

Glad that there wasn't an unhappy ending to this story.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 11:22 AM   #17
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Gear designed to handle pro level equipment and costing North of $500 shouldn't crack on a fall in the snow, even in sub freezing temperatures.

I don't care for the locks on Manfrotto tripods either, but I still went with the carbon fiber version of the 055XBPRO when I did my upgrade around a year ago. It's easily eye height for me and I'm a 6 footer. I don't do extended mountain treks anymore, but I can easily carry it for several hours on the trail and I'm a legitimate "senior citizen" now.

Find what suites you best and go with it. You have high standards in photography gear. Just don't buy anything you haven't handled again, now that you know the point of failure for these things. Hang at photo stores and check out the local pros in your area. Handle stuff before you buy.

You could give Gitzo an earful and get them to replace your tripod free.

Edit: ask Art Wolfe what he would recommend. He uses his stuff in remote and unfriendly locations, too. I mean unfriendly environments, your locals are friendly. He uses Gitzo and Kirk, but his tripod dosen't have an extension. I think that would make it stronger at the point of failure you experienced. Here's a link: http://blog.artwolfe.com/ The bottom of the page has a photo of it. Wrong page. The photo is here

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Old Dec 10, 2012, 11:44 AM   #18
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Ugh! After two, I'd be out too- fortunately my Gitzo is holding up, and it doesn't get babied at all- quite the opposite! A quick Google of "Feisol broken tripod," "Benro broken tripod," and "RRS broken tripod" shows the former two breaking and the latter being used as a replacement for broken tripods- I think that's about as good as it's going to get- but I'd call and talk to RRS and see how they are to deal with.

Paul
Paul, thanks for doing some of that legwork on Google. I did a bit too and came up with the same impression. It kills me that I could go through two more Gitzos for the price of one tripod from RRS, but I invest too much in my photo trips to have one ruined because of a broken tripod.

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I don't know you would ever really trust a Gitzo again. Even in a best case scenario... Gitzo replaces your tripod, perhaps even with an upgrade... will you every really be able to stand there, waiting for the light, and not be thinking to yourself that perhaps the camera is about to fall.

My feeling is that Gitzo is going to have to much much more than just replace the tripod for you to have any confidence in it. And if you aren't confident in the tripod, how is that going to affect your shooting?

I don't have alternative to offer, sorry. I happen to use a Gitzo... but it's not one of the light carbon fibre jobs as I don't need light. However, I'll ask my friend who shoots in similar conditions as you do. He researches his purchases thoroughly.

Glad that there wasn't an unhappy ending to this story.
Your concerns pretty well sum up my thinking. If I'm going to to snowshoe out into the backcountry through meter-high snow drifts just to shoot a sunset (which then requires trudging back for hours in the dark with a headlamp), the last thing I want to be worrying about is whether or not my tripod will shed a leg in middle of my shot!

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Gear designed to handle pro level equipment and costing North of $500 shouldn't crack on a fall in the snow, even in sub freezing temperatures.

I don't care for the locks on Manfrotto tripods either, but I still went with the carbon fiber version of the 055XBPRO when I did my upgrade around a year ago. It's easily eye height for me and I'm a 6 footer. I don't do extended mountain treks anymore, but I can easily carry it for several hours on the trail and I'm a legitimate "senior citizen" now.

Find what suites you best and go with it. You have high standards in photography gear. Just don't buy anything you haven't handled again, now that you know the point of failure for these things. Hang at photo stores and check out the local pros in your area. Handle stuff before you buy.

You could give Gitzo an earful and get them to replace your tripod free.

Dale
Well, the tripod didn't even fall in the snow. I was standing there checking whether or not it was stable when I heard a "CRACK!". It worried me, but even then the tripod didn't fall (I think because the snow helped it to stay up), so I kept on with my work. It wasn't until I went to move the tripod that I realized that it had become a duo-pod.

Your advice about shopping is definitely good, but how would anyone looking at a Gitzo in a store come to the conclusion that it would fail as mine did? A guy on POTN told me that a sales rep in his local store put all of his weight on a standing Gitzo just to show how sturdy it was.

Anyway, I do expect that Gitzo will honor my warranty, though one person in the thread I referenced earlier was denied. Assuming they fix it, I'll then have a tripod that I can't trust. That is a problem.

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Old Dec 10, 2012, 12:28 PM   #19
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//snipped for brevity//
Assuming they fix it, I'll then have a tripod that I can't trust. That is a problem.
That's never good...

Check my post again. I added a link just before you posted your reply.

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Old Dec 10, 2012, 12:39 PM   #20
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That's never good...

Check my post again. I added a link just before you posted your reply.

Dale
Many thanks for the link, Dale. Alas, the part that broke on my tripod is also present on his. It's the top "spider" of the unit that holds the legs in place, which is made of a cast alloy. The idea of having a machined metal instead of the cast metal is very appealing to me at this point.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 02:42 PM   #21
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Phrasikleia Probably not news ... but for what it is worth, my friend who shoots similar materials says....
"I have read some really good things about the Really Right Stuff Tripods
and heads. I Have a gitzo tripod and a Acratech Ultimate ballhead - the
acratech head is amazing."


His website is www.friedmanphoto.com. I'm sure if you had any questions Steven wouldn't mind answering. He is a big fellow, so "light" is relative. Then again I think he packs a bigger camera (often a Horseman 617) so "light" might still be a critical factor.

Good Luck.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 04:56 PM   #22
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Phrasikleia One more reply. Hope this helps. Ron shoots exclusively travel assignments, and has been - well - everywhere. If I think of more folks who shoot under extreme conditions, I'll poll them too.

"I own a few gitzo models but use my Manfrotto 055MF3 magfiber (carbon fibre) which I took to the Antarctic on assignment, although temperatures there were actually not as cold as I've experienced in North America!
The gitzo that it replaced is a carbon fibre "reporter" G1228 which I've used since they first were manufactured without an issue.
I prefer the manfrotto for the quick release legs and its full longer reach."
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 11:21 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Phrasikleia View Post
Many thanks for the info, jabbott. Yes, I'll definitely get the Gitzo repaired under warranty. If I could get it immediately, I'd probably just go on using it, but it took them well over a month last time to get my repair done. If I do replace it with something else, then I'll either keep the Gitzo as back-up or will sell it. It will go in for warranty repair, though.

Edit: Could you elaborate on the "chipping" of the RRS item you purchased? Was this a cosmetic or functional problem? Either way, your description of their customer service is very worrisome.
It was a cosmetic problem that arose out of having the BH-40 ballhead release lever set in the factory position. One of the features of their ballhead is that you can pull the release lever out partially and rotate it 60˚ into one of six different positions. My ballhead shipped in a position that readily interferes with the bubble level, and I didn't even know about the lever rotation feature until my bubble level was damaged from rubbing between the two items and I contacted RRS about it. If the lever had shipped rotated one position higher, there would have been no damage at all to the bubble level because they wouldn't have interfered. This photo shows the interference between the two pieces:



The resulting damage to the bubble level:


After this issue, I realized another issue when using their bubble level - it prevents free rotation of the LR clamp:


I've since stopped using the bubble level altogether, as it just wasn't worth the hassle. Thankfully the 5D3 has a nice built-in level. Since contacting RRS about the bubble level, my ballhead has also developed chipping similar to the bubble level, despite treating the ballhead very carefully. It still lets me take stabilized photos though, and that's really what matters.
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Old Dec 10, 2012, 11:37 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by Phrasikleia View Post
Many thanks for the link, Dale. Alas, the part that broke on my tripod is also present on his. It's the top "spider" of the unit that holds the legs in place, which is made of a cast alloy. The idea of having a machined metal instead of the cast metal is very appealing to me at this point.
I can see how that would make it appealing. Gitzo, Arca Swiss, etc. seem to have pursued a lot of cost cutting measures in recent years. I may look at RRS myself when I replace the old school Manfrotto that weighs 10,000 pounds. When I've looked at Gitzos in the store I didn't like anything below a Series 3. The twist locks buckled much less on those. If you go with the RRS, let me know how you like it. I was just looking at your site.

It seems we think alike in this way. I discovered the potential for luminance masks a long time ago, although I returned to mostly hand painted masks. It's really tedious, but it doesn't require a lot of contrast in the area to control it.


http://www.phrasikleia.com/about-phrasikleia/f-a-q/
Quote:
5. Most of my images are processed from single ‘raw’ files, sometimes with luminosity masks. I prefer to use selective techniques (i.e. layers and masking) over global solutions such as HDR. I do not use any HDR software in my processing.
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Old Dec 11, 2012, 01:40 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by thekev View Post
I can see how that would make it appealing. Gitzo, Arca Swiss, etc. seem to have pursued a lot of cost cutting measures in recent years. I may look at RRS myself when I replace the old school Manfrotto that weighs 10,000 pounds. When I've looked at Gitzos in the store I didn't like anything below a Series 3. The twist locks buckled much less on those. If you go with the RRS, let me know how you like it. I was just looking at your site.

It seems we think alike in this way. I discovered the potential for luminance masks a long time ago, although I returned to mostly hand painted masks. It's really tedious, but it doesn't require a lot of contrast in the area to control it.


http://www.phrasikleia.com/about-phrasikleia/f-a-q/
Thanks, thekev. It's funny how much people on this forum are bringing up luminance masks lately. I too edit manually to a great extent, even when I begin with a LM. I recently wrote a stub for a future article about it, which you can read here: LINK.

Anyway, I thought previously that a Series 2 would solve the problem I had with my Series 1 Gitzo (same thing, broken alloy), and I'm not feeling at all inclined to carry around a heavier Series 3 Gitzo in the hopes that it will be beefy enough to avoid a similar fate.

It's really depressing that I could buy two Gitzos for the price of one equivalent tripod from RRS. I'm in a real quandary with this issue. There was a time when I never thought I would pay what I did for the Gitzos, but I ultimately plunked down the money thinking I would never need to buy another tripod again. When does it stop?! OK, that was just a rant, but it felt good to get it out!
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