tripod basics which I don't know at DVinfo.net

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Old April 8th, 2002, 08:02 PM   #1
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tripod basics which I don't know

Could someone tell me what the 75mm or 100mm ball on a tripod head means. What does it do? Is is better to have this or not?
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Old April 8th, 2002, 09:53 PM   #2
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Hello Jonathan,
This mysterious "ball" actually refers to a tripod head design style whereby the head fits onto the legs in a ball and socket manner, the ball being on the head. (The size of the ball is important to note when trying to mate a particular head with legs.) This enables the head to be quickly leveled by loosening the ball and tilting the head. This is an invaluable feature of nearly all high-quality tripods since it enables you to quickly level the head on uneven ground without fiddling with the leg heights. You most definitely should try to select a model with this feature. In conjuction with this feature you should also look for a head that has a built-in bubble level, otherwise you won't be able to determine what "level" is.

Best of luck.
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Old April 9th, 2002, 11:39 AM   #3
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Thanks Ken. This really gets me out of the dark.
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Old April 9th, 2002, 12:37 PM   #4
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Check out this link to Manfrotto

Here's a URL showing you the 438 (Bogen 3502). It works great with the 503 head.

http://www.manfrotto.com/products/metric/botfot3.html?doc_from=search_from&man_code=438&srcman_code=438&srcbog_code=&srcarticle=&doc_from=sea rch_form&company=MNO&contatore=primo

I use it and love it.

Nathan Gifford
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Old April 9th, 2002, 10:31 PM   #5
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Nathan,
Is the Bogen (3502) compact levelling head different from a "ball" set up which I was asking about before? I'm looking at buying the 503 head and mating it to the Bogen 3058 legs but I don't know if I need the "ball" to mate the two or this compact levelling head(3502) or just the head itself. Can you use the ball setup on any tripod or does it depend on the head?
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Old April 10th, 2002, 12:16 AM   #6
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Johnathan - The 3502 leveller includes the ball and bowl in a single unit and attaches to the 3058 center post. Your 503 head then attaches to the top of the 3502. The 3058 sticks have a geared center column instead of a bowl which is the reason you can't just put a ball on the bottom of the 503 head.

The Manfrotto/Bogen catalog also lists a 3114 (100mm Bowl Interface) which also attaches to the tripod center post. You would then need the 3141BALL to attach to the head if you went with this option.
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Old April 10th, 2002, 06:04 AM   #7
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The levelling ball is an accessory for the 3058.

Manfrotto's page does list the compact levelling head as an accessory for the 3058. I have a 503 head and the 3502 mates perfectly with it. In fact the 503 has its own spirit level too. But, I do not have 3058 sticks.

I would try to find out what the better option is. However, the 3502 is a great addition to system that lacks a levelling ball. It is also an item that not many camera shops knows anything about.

Nathan Gifford
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Old April 10th, 2002, 12:48 PM   #8
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Thanks Ed and Nathan for clearing this up. I'm learing a great deal.
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