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Old March 3rd, 2010, 02:44 PM   #1
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Replacing my Fibertec, or not

OK, Chris, this might be a fun one for you.

I bought the Vinten Fibertec's last January, cobbled together a mid-level spreader from Sachtler for a few months, then bought the Vinten SpreadLoc, completing the Fibertec pkg in August. The head was a Sachtler DV6SB.

It was my 'forget about it' tripod, meaning, like my elbow and knees, I pretty much never think about them, just use them. I figure that's the way all gear should be.

Last January the kit was stolen.


My work takes me all over and includes hiking into the backcountry, skiing, and snowshoeing, chasing wildlife, sports, drama and event work, using rigs weighing 2-12 pounds, usually on the lighter end of that spectrum. Placing the camera low to the ground and high above the audience's heads is important.

I do have the single stage aluminum sticks that came with the Sachtler DV6SB. I need to get them sold, but haven't gotten around to it yet.

Insurance is covering about half of the loss, so the budget is more tight than not.

So I'm wondering, shall I pursue hunting around for a new set of FiberTecs, or is there something better on the market? What directly compares with the FiberTec?

'Better' would mean same performance lighter weight, same performance lighter impact on the wallet, or somewhat weaker performance, but alot lighter on the back and wallet.
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 02:57 PM   #2
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To my knowledge Vinten don't make the "old" fibertec legs anymore, only the CF Pozilock ones.

Did the entire kit get stolen, or just the legs..?
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 04:55 PM   #3
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Geez, Scott........

When I saw that title I damn near fell off my chair, thinking "what nutter would swap out a set of FiberTec's for something else............?".

Sorry to hear of your loss, boy, thats gotta hurt.

"What directly compares to the FiberTec's?"

Man, that is one serious question and I really don't think there's a satisfactory answer as those massive I - beams are irreplaceable and not available on any other make/ model of tripod I've managed to find..

However, given that the FiberTec's are rated to about 99 pounds support weight, the answer has to be in that range of support system capabilities.

So, in ever increasing levels of back breaking, we have:

Sachtler | CF-100ENG 2CF Carbon Fiber Tripod Legs | 5386 | B&H

then

Sachtler | CF-100ENG HD 2CF Carbon Fiber HD Tripod Legs | 5390

then

Vinten | 38843 2-Stage Carbon Fiber Tripod with 100mm | 3884-3

I threw the Sachtler HD's in there for a bit of gratuitous sex and violence, tho' they're not without their merits.

You can get a pretty good idea of build quality from those weights: 5.3, 9.5 & 12.1 pounds respectively.

Needless to say, all three systems require the obligatory eye wateringly expensive mid - level spreaders.

Whether any of them can offer the same "Mack truck axel stand" resistance to wind up as the FiberTec's, I can't really say, tho' they'd have to be seriously in the ball park.

I know you'd rather look at something a bit further down the food chain, price wise, but after the FiberTecs' I am positive you'd be terribly dissapointed.

What do you think?


CS

PS: I have e - mailed Peter Harman to see if he knows whether anyone on the planet actually has a set of FiberTecs' in stock, don't fancy the chances but worth a try.
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Old March 3rd, 2010, 11:40 PM   #4
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Everything was gone when I woke up the next morning. I had shorts and a tee shirt, plus they considerately left the aspirin... I'll post the story one of these days.

Thanks for the list, Chris. It's good to know the players anyway. If I can't have it all, I may well swing toward light on the back and the wallet.

I have a week or two before I pull the trigger. Maybe Peter or the folks at Vitec USA will come up with something.
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Old March 4th, 2010, 12:12 AM   #5
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Must have been some party.......

Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott Brickert View Post
I had shorts and a tee shirt, plus they considerately left the aspirin... .
Love to hear the story, gonna be a best seller, hey, make the movie!

Geez, I'm so sorry, tho' I think you mentioned it in another thread some weeks/ months ago, didn't put it together with the FiberTecs' tho'.

Wasn't it on some Caribean island, flogging my last remaining grey cell into some sort of activity?

I shall stay tuned for the next exciting episode, more news as I have it, too.


CS
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Old March 4th, 2010, 01:51 PM   #6
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OK, Peter Harman and team have officially BLOWN MY MIND. I'm calmly sitting at my computer typing, but inside, jumping Up and dOwn.

As I looked at the options out there, I realized again what a great fit the FiberTec is for what I do. So it was not going to be fun picking something else.

However, Team Vinten found the last Fibertec in the USA and put together a package to get my camera out of the snow and back up in the air on solid ground, so to speak. Looks like it will ship tomorrow and arrive next week.

What a turn of events. I'm so thankful.
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Last edited by Scott Brickert; March 4th, 2010 at 03:03 PM. Reason: grammar
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Old March 4th, 2010, 02:44 PM   #7
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Well I'll be blowed.............

Talk about "go the extra mile", Vinten just never cease to amaze me with their fantastic customer support.

Think you might want to handcuff 'em to your ankle or something when your out and abouting, don't want to lose this set.

I don't recall you saying if they got the Sachtler head as well as the sticks.

Assuming they did, what are you going to replace it with, Sachtler or Vinten?

I'm really pleased for you Scott, the thought of losing my FiberTecs' is too horrible to even contemplate.


CS
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Old March 4th, 2010, 03:02 PM   #8
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They got all the gear, so yeah, the Sachtler head as well. [There I was on this beautiful beach for 8 days, couldn't even take a pic or vid with the iPhone.]

The pkg includes a Vision 3AS, so I'm a complete Vinten man now :)
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Old March 4th, 2010, 03:23 PM   #9
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The new Vinten AS heads are really nice. I've been a Fibertec user since they first came out, I even had a pre-production set to test when they were developing them. When I finally replaced my aging Vinten Vision 5 head with a 5AS I also got a new set of tubular legs. I do like the new legs, they were great value for the money, but while my Fibertec legs still work I will continue to use them.
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Old March 5th, 2010, 12:09 AM   #10
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For those as don't know (and there must be a few).............

what the heck we're talking about here, here's the answer:

Feature: Vinten FiberTec Tripod (1 of 5) at DVInfo.net

Takes some finding in the archives.

As I said at the time, probably the best camera support system available, at any price, for the "under 100 lbs" range.

If you ain't got one of these, you really ain't lived in HD video camera support.

Not bad as a first stab at doing a review, even if I do say so myself.

Personally, I'd leave my missus before I'd leave them! (Shhh, don't tell her!).


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Old March 5th, 2010, 11:05 AM   #11
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Yeah, Chris, it was that review that first interested me in the rig, although my skepticism about bumping or kicking the legs remains... I take that line with a grain of salt, and a bag of sand tied from the ring at the top... :)
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Old March 5th, 2010, 11:34 AM   #12
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Ha, that's just awesome. I'll be sure to drop by the Vitec complex at NAB (it's more than "just a booth," it's huge) and thank Peter and company personally for looking out for one of our own. Congrats Scott,
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Old March 8th, 2010, 11:31 AM   #13
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CS,

After "just" reading your review about the Fiber Tec legs, I had know idea that you were so astute about them and the importance of stability and smoothness of the system to get the most out of a HD systems.

I'm so glad I followed your advice when purchasing my CF legs.

Thanks for steering us all in the right direction at least in the purchase of "legs", as far as "Collecting Wives" one is enough that is why I believe in doing right the first time.

PS Can a shoulder strap be attached to my legs beside the $120 3425-3p Vinten one, cause I do not see any attachment points on the legs

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Old March 9th, 2010, 01:17 AM   #14
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Thank you, Melvin.................

Very kind words indeed.

I have indeed given up on the "collecting wives" thing (for now), tho' tomorrow is always another day.

As far as I know, that review is one of the very few (well, there may well be others, but stuffed if I can find any) that actually addresses the problems people like us have in making a choice for a camera support, especially for HD.

I do try to hammer the point home to newcomers to this area of endeavour, but so many seem to think, not unnaturally, that "the camera is all".

It ain't. It's part of a "system", end of story.

As to your strap query, can't help, sorry.

Try Peter Harman, if you can catch him in pre - NAB "running around in circles like a headless chook" mode [by which I mean busier than a one armed paper hanger and not at a loss whatsoever].


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Old March 11th, 2010, 01:01 AM   #15
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The last FiberTecs in the USA arrived today. Wow. It still doesn't seem real. Guess I'll have to go out and shoot something for it to sink in.

Thanks again to Peter Harman and the folks at Vinten/Camera Dynamics for putting together a great deal and getting me back in the game!
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