Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question at DVinfo.net

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Old June 2nd, 2011, 11:32 AM   #1
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Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

Hello all!

Firstly, I have a spoilt Manfrotto 540 ART tripod where the legs don't get gripped when extended. Can this be repairable? If so, and I know this is a long shot, does anyone know who I can contact in Singapore?

I recently purchased a 501HDV with the aforementioned spoilt 540 ART tripod, and it came as a 501HDV with half bowl. I need to use it on a photo stills tripod for a very urgent shoot on wednesday, and I was wondering if there is a way to take away the half bowl? I'm not sure if there is a variant of the 501HDV that is half-bowl and not flat based, but since I can only buy the 501HDV with a flat base, I assumed this could work.

Any ideas?
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 11:58 AM   #2
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

Hi,

I have a 501HDV with flat base, and some simple legs. It's not the same as yours, but the principle is the same.

This should be easy. Remove the whole head (including bowl) from the tripod, you should see some small screws underneath. Mine has three screws. Undo all these screws and you should be able to twist the head away from the ball. You should be able to just unscrew them part-way, without totally removing them, so you won't misplace the screws!

You will need to unscrew the long handle from the bowl before you can see the screws.

You can then mount the head on a flat-base tripod (or on a slider, or similar).

Sorry I can't help with the legs, they are quite different to mine.
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 12:14 PM   #3
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

Hi Mike,

Thanks for the swift reply! I am very new to this. I have taken out the 3 screws, but even then I can't take the entire half bowl out because the head apparently rotates around this center axle, with and without the pan brakes on.

Or am I doing something wrong?
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 12:58 PM   #4
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

Hmmm... it could be that it is a very tight fitting. I rememebr the first time I had to dismantle mine, it was a tough turn!

Just check that your 501HDV is the same as mine. See the attached photos!

They show the head before the handle is removed, with the handle removed, the screws being removed, and finally the head being unscrewed from the base.

I am gripping the whole head with my left hand, and twisting the bowl counter-clockwise with my right hand.

As I said, it can be very hard to do this the first time. If your bowl arrangement is different to mine, then you might need to wait for someone else to help!
Attached Thumbnails
Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question-1-before.jpg   Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question-2-before.jpg  

Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question-3-ball-handle-removed.jpg   Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question-4-unscrewing.jpg  

Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question-5-twisting.jpg  
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 01:06 PM   #5
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

One more thing - you may need a step-down adapter so the screw on the photo tripod fits the Manfrotto. The screw hole under my 501HDV is 3/8 inch, and I think a lot of tripod screws are 1/4".

I think this is what you would need:

General Brand 3/8" to 1/4"-20 Tripod Reducer NPTRB B&H

It screws up inside the base of the head, and lets you mount it on a 1/4" tripod screw.
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 01:15 PM   #6
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

Yes, my bowl adapter is different. My spoilt 540 ART has a 100mm bowl... the concept should work the same, but it's not going well for me. The bowl just "sticks" to the bottom of the head itself and they both pan.
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Old June 2nd, 2011, 02:50 PM   #7
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zexun Tan View Post
I have a spoilt Manfrotto 540 ART tripod where the legs don't get gripped when extended.
Just so everyone is clear about this, do you mean the leg locks no longer lock?

If that is the case, there should be on each lock an Allen key adjustment point to tighten the locks up, else the relevant knob can be removed and the shaft rotated 1/6 of a turn clockwise and the knob replaced.

As the part diagram 542.99 seems to have mysteriously dissapeared from the Manfrotto web site, taking the details of the ART series leg locks with it, I can't be any more specific.

As for the 501HDV, it is, indeed, a flat bottomed head and if it has been fitted with the 100 mm half ball base, it can be removed just as Mike described, though I can attest to the fact that when these units are assembled, Manfrotto don't muck about when it comes to torquing them up.

Mike is again correct, if you are using a standard stills tripod you will need a 1/4" to 3/8" adapter to fit the 501HDV to it (assuming you can ever get that ball base off it, of course).

In the event you need Manfrotto service, here you go: Where to Buy Manfrotto they even give you a map!


CS
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Old June 4th, 2011, 07:08 AM   #8
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

I gave my head a very, very hard twist and finally it's out! Now it can get on and off the bowl with ease. Thanks all!

All that's left to do is to repair the 540 ART. Hope it can be repaired by just replacing the catchment metal parts that are holding the CF rods together.
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Old June 4th, 2011, 11:36 PM   #9
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Re: Manfrotto help! Spoilt tripod legs, and a 501HDV question

It'll have to be by a Manfrotto agent - the schematics for the ART leg locks have obviously been withheld from the web owing to being super secret, so I can't give any advice.


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