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Old April 22nd, 2012, 01:40 AM   #1
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Manfrotto Spreader on Vinten Sticks

Does anyone know if the Manfrotto 165MV ground spreader will fit onto the Vinten 3819-3 Pozi-Loc Tripod.

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Garrett
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 02:02 AM   #2
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Re: Manfrotto Spreader on Vinten Sticks

Hi, Garret...........

Easy answer that one, if the ground spreader is a standard twin spike unit design.

Vinten, Manfrotto and, it would appear, Miller, share a similar twin/ semi twin spike foot.

All of those feet should fit the spreader attachment system you have indicated.

I have used my Manfrotto ground speader on the Vinten FiberTecs and the Vinten sticks you mentioned, no problem.


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Old April 22nd, 2012, 10:33 AM   #3
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Re: Manfrotto Spreader on Vinten Sticks

Thanks Chris. Yes it looks like it is for a two spike setup. This is the only spreader I found that can extend this far (up to 51"). And it's a lot cheaper than the Vinten spreader.

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Garrett
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 04:38 PM   #4
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Re: Manfrotto Spreader on Vinten Sticks

I have that combination (or something very similar. I'd need to go back and check part numbers.) While I love the Vinten 3AS head and the tripod itself is quite good, I found the the spreader situation to be... unfortunate.

To stay within budget I got a Manfrotto ground spreader and it's always been a bit clumsy. When collapsing the tripod, the spreader often wants to fold to the outside and come off the spikes. When setting up the tripod, the spreader often bends at the foot, so you have to step on the spreader just inside the three feet to get it fully extended. It adds play to the system - especially on any type of carpet. The only place where it really works well is on hard, clean, linoleum.

Recently, I upgraded. Unfortunately, at the time the only Vinten mid-spreader I found was this one, which comes with feet, but is too darn expensive for what it is. Oh well, my department had some money in the year-end budget...
Vinten 3781-3 Spread-Loc Mid-Level Spreader with Rubber 3781-3

And even at that price, I'm not happy with the feet. They're bulky and don't fit in the bag well. I'd much prefer screw-on feet than the rubber-band jobs.

Assuming it fits, you might consider this option as your go-to spreader.
Vinten V4032-0001 ProTouch Mid-Level Spreader V4032-0001 B&H

However, it doesn't come with feet. When shooting on a hardwood floor, you need to protect it from the spikes, so you might want the Manfrotto spreader for those situations.

My ideal tripod would come with a mid-level spreader, would have solid spikes, and would have integrated feet that are compact when stowed and can be flipped under the spikes when needed. I want to go click-click-click, open the tripod, and set it on the floor with no fuss. Having to stretch the rubber bands or wrestle a long six-jointed floor spreader that doesn't stow well is not ideal.
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Old April 22nd, 2012, 05:18 PM   #5
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Re: Manfrotto Spreader on Vinten Sticks

Good points, Jon.

That something might be "fit for purpose" is not necessarilly a recommendation it's the most user friendly.

I only ever use the floor speader for review testing, so that I can nail feet/ legs to the ground using concrete blocks (a leg lifting during stress testing is a complete no - no).

The cheaper mid level spreader you indicated is indeed a far more cost effective option to the SpreadLoc, which, whilst being a more robust and in some respects superior device ergonomically, has the drawback of weighing in at nearly a kilo (2.2lbs) all on it's little tod, and costs somewhere around $600+.

Not sure how anyone can justify that for a spreader, but that's beside the point.

Something to bear in mind when buying Vinten kit, and a case I made in my review of the Vision Blue some time ago, is this:

If you take the cost of the sticks mentioned as an individual item, add the mid spreader, boots and a bag ditto, it actually works out way more expensive than buying the complete VB kit, which just happens to include the head for zilch.

Even if you already have another head, if you can get a second for free whilst getting an exceedingly robust tripod system, AND save a wadge of cash, why wouldn't you?

Part of the reason the VB sells faster than they can make them.

As for boots, I think I've used my Vinten boots once.

If I have occasion to shoot on polished wood floors, which is not a regular occurance, I always use one of my dolly's, far more convenient and makes moving the rig around soooo simple.

Saves a shed load of wear and tear on the spine, to boot (er, so to speak).


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Old April 22nd, 2012, 09:34 PM   #6
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Re: Manfrotto Spreader on Vinten Sticks

Using the floor spreader would not be my normal mode of operation. I prefer a mid spreader which I have. But, for ultra low setups the spiked feet don't provide the grip needed. The Manfrotto spreader may not be the best and for the price I don't expect it to be. But, since it can spread to a width of 51" it will allow me to drop the tripod down as low as possible. As I mentioned in general I won't be using the floor spreader but it is good to know about the limitations of the spreader.
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