Brand new to LF looking for a intro level tripod

Discussion in 'Large Format Cameras and Accessories' started by Armentor1, Feb 3, 2011.

  1. Armentor1

    Armentor1 Member

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    hey guys, I just got a B&J rail camera 8x10 with a 305mm kodak portrait lens. The next piece to this puzzle seems to be a tripod. I'm looking for a tripod that can be purchased for under $200 that will support the 8x10 format. Any ideas? I ran across this Davis and Stanford model at B&H but have never heard of the company. Has anyone used one of these before?

    thanks-
    dave
     

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  2. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Davis and Sanford makes some fine big tripods, but I'd look for a used Majestic (be sure it includes the Majestic head) as an affordable tripod to get started with in 8x10".
     
  3. tessar

    tessar Subscriber

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    Another used tripod to look for is a big wooden Paul Ries. I don't know when mine was made, but the 6-inch-square platform says Made in Los Angeles, so I imagine it was more than a few years ago. The controls are big and strong and easy to adjust. It holds my Agfa 8x10 (heavy) rock steady. I paid $100 Cdn. for it at a used camera store.
     
  4. jp498

    jp498 Member

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    Sweet lens you got there!

    If you don't mind going over $200 just a little Berlebach has some quality tripods for new under $300. That's next on my list, unless I got a steal of a deal on a kodak portrait lens.

    http://www.hpmarketingcorp.com/berlebach.html

    Used majestic and ries are also universally well regarded. I have a cheap surveying tripod I use for my 8x10 camera. I have an adaptor plate to go from 5/8" to 1/4". It's not ideal in terms of features or looks, but it works well and was <$100.
     
  5. Rick A

    Rick A Subscriber

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    Alot of the LF and ULF users are mounting their rigs on surveyors tripods. These are either aluminum or wood and can be purchased for under $80 including a thread adapter for 1/4-20 or 3/8-16 thread pitch, depending on what your camera requires. These pods are super sturdy and will last your lifetime.
     
  6. TheFlyingCamera

    TheFlyingCamera Membership Council Council

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    That's one heck of a deal you got there on that camera, especially with that lens. I'll second the recommendation of the Majestic tripod and head, and also recommend looking for a used Bogen/Manfrotto aluminum tripod with the geared center column (I forget the exact model number). It's a beast, and will definitely confine you to the old "50 feet from the car" range, but it will hold that camera rock steady. I suspect with that combination though you're going to be mostly using it in the studio anyway, so the weight is not much of an issue.
     
  7. David A. Goldfarb

    David A. Goldfarb Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    Of course if you see a Ries for $100, jump on it, but that's quite a rare find. They are excellent tripods, but also very much in demand, and even quite old ones aren't cheap.
     
  8. Armentor1

    Armentor1 Member

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    Thanks for all of the advice, I'll let you guys know which direction I decide.
     
  9. mjs

    mjs Member

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    With the little tripod block thing these originally came with (it clamps around the rail and has a tripod screw socket in the other end,) you don't need a tripod with a head; just the tripod will do, at least, for now. A surveyor's tripod would be good, as was suggested above, and you don't need to spend for a "real" head right away.

    Mike