Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod at DVinfo.net

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Old July 24th, 2013, 10:20 AM   #1
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Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

I finally pulled the trigger on the 'subject' tripod. It should arrive on or about the end of the week. I'll be using it with my FSB-8 Fluid Head. And yes, I'm keeping my Sachtler Speedlock #4588, 75 CF Sticks as my lightweight travel legs, a role which they are more than capable of filling.

Some smart person will point out the 'CF 100 ENG' is a 100 mm bowl and my FSB-8 is a 75 mm bowl, and they'd be right! However, I went ahead and purchased Sachtler Adapter 75/100 75 mm Ball Base to 100 mm Adapter, which will allow me to use the FSB-8 Fluid Head. This is my attempt to future-proofing my rig as much as I'm able. Yes, I know I've introduced a potential 'slip point' by using an 'adapter', but if it's designed and manufactured as well as my Gitzo 75 mm Bowl Adapter, GS5320V75, it should be fairly stable.

Ironically, when I purchased my extremely expensive (back in the 1990s) Gitzo G1325, Mk. II, I thought, "Well, this is the last tripod I'll ever buy.". What a laugh!

BTW, I'd like to own a 'Miller' or 'O'Conner' system, but I just can't manage the $$.

Okay, now I'd love to hear your opinions regarding my purchase and the feasibility of my 'future-proofing plan'. Trust me, if I made a huge mistake, don't feel shy about letting me know. I've made them before, besides, there's always the 30-day return policy. : )

Regards,

J.
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Old July 24th, 2013, 04:58 PM   #2
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Very good buy there James, you must have deep pockets, they ain't cheap.

You have, however, fallen for what appears to be a popular misconception:

Quote:
...Yes, I know I've introduced a potential 'slip point' by using an 'adapter',
Actually, you haven't. There are two friction points in any ball/ bowl tripod/ head system - the clamp knob cup on the underside of the bowl (this will not change by using an adapter) and the ball/ bowl rim friction ring.

The latter, has almost exactly the same friction as the underlying bowl (qualified by the fact that the contact area of a 75 mm ball/ bowl must be less than that of a 100 mm unit).

As 75mm units aren't known for "slippage" (mostly!) an adapter makes no difference in real world usage.

Having put that one to the sword, I think you've bought an awesome set of sticks, just glad you'll be humping them around and not me.

Much as I love my Vinten FiberTecs, the base of my spine has a fit of the abb - jabs if I even look sideways at them, they are HEAVY!

Enjoy (and take out some insurance on your L2/ L3, L3/ L4 & L4/ L5 discs!).


CS
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Old July 24th, 2013, 09:13 PM   #3
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Chris...it's too late for my back. : ) However, I don't see me doing a lot of K-2 summits. ; )

This 'is' my entire equipment budget for '2013! However, I've always been told a good set of sticks will outlast several cameras and I've been talking about buying these sticks for a year and a half, and thinking about it for six months before that! I figured it was time to do it - back my ears down and get the checkbook out. : )

I'll give an overview (not a review) when they arrive.

Regards,

J.
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Old July 26th, 2013, 04:16 PM   #4
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Wow! That was my initial reaction. This is a large piece of kit! It’s kind of like having a ‘Jeep off-road vehicle’ and thinking you are ‘All that and a bag of chips’, only to realize when a Military Humvee pulls up alongside, suddenly you're mumbling to yourself, “Maybe I should have stayed on the porch?”

Seriously, it makes every other tripod I currently own look like a toy! Even my FSB-8 Fluid Head, which I truly love, is now a ‘toy’ when attached to the ‘CF 100 ENG’. Yikes!

As most of you know, this is a 2:2:2 designed leg system and in my living room (On carpet), seems quite solid and stable. And, while this is a valid test for rigors of “Living Room Cinéma Vérité”, my testing regimen is not as refined as Mr. Soucy’s. : )

Yes, CF 100 ENG sticks are heavier than my Speed Lock 75 CF legs, which should be no surprise to anyone. However, in my mind, it’s not just the overall weight increase, but the increased ‘bulk’. There’s just a lot more tripod! But, wasn’t that the whole purpose of buying a heavy-duty tripod?

I've read on various discussion forums and several online reviews, that the ‘SP100 Spreader’ is the one to get (Yes, at a price!). After playing around with the Spreader’s range of adjustment (All of 30-min, or so.), it’s seems like I made the right choice. The center dial gives a good deal of adjustment with a simple twist.

Speaking of ‘handy’, there is a ‘built-in’ handle located just above the ‘Lock’ on top of the leg section. It’s spring-loaded and locks in-place for carrying and stores almost flush with the top of the leg. Unfortunately, I suspect I’ll end-up carrying it on my shoulder, like always. : ) But, it gives me an option.

Regarding the 75mm to 100mm Bowl Adapter, it appears to be stable, but time will tell the whole story. However, I'm not a big fan of the ‘short handle’. It just seems ‘fiddly’. I’m sure with experience I'll learn to use it effectively.

If, you have any questions regarding the Sachtler CF100 ENG HD 2CF tripod, please do not hesitate to ask and I'll try my best to answer.

Best regards,

J.
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Old July 27th, 2013, 02:17 PM   #5
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

I've spent a little under 24-hours with my new acquisition and already I need to make a correction.

I misidentified the Spreader as the ‘SP100 Spreader’. The actual Nomenclature, description and part number is "Sachtler 100/150 Mid-Level Tripod Spreader - P/N: 7007". Sorry for the confusion.

To refer to this device as a mere 'Spreader' is doing it a disservice. There is a lot of Engineering going-on here. A centrally located 'Adjusting Dial' with successively deeper and shallower scallop cuts on the underside, gives you the ability to incrementally 'adjust' the diameter and height of the tripod legs and fine-tune the position to your 'sweet spot'. Action is very quick and with a little practice, you'll be able to perform this on the fly. The three (3) arms of the Spreader attach to the tripod legs by means of two (2) spring-loaded Red Buttons located in positions on each leg. The 'attach points' for the Spreader Arms are another example of the Sachtler's ingenious design; easy to attach and detach. There should be enough adjustment for most demanding Filmmaker/Videographer.

The main twin beam down-tubes are ~1-inch (25mm) diameter as are the the next set of twin tubes. The lower tubes are a slightly smaller diameter. I don't know the wall thickness of the CF material, but it seems very stiff and inflexible. I should also mention the Leg Locking Clamps while I'm at it. Continuing with the overall 'theme' of this tripod, the Leg Locking Clamps are large, easy to operate and robust. Also, the legs slide-out smoothly to full extension without any trouble.

Since I am not a fan of the Short Clamping Screw Handle that came with the 'Adapter Kit', I think I'll attempt a DIY project and swap the Clamping Screw Friction Cup of the FSB-8 Clamping Screw Handle with the Clamping Screw Friction Cup of the 75mm to 100mm Bowl Adapter. I believe it requires the removal/reinstallation of one (1) Circlip each. It should be easy.

Seems as though I may use the 'integral handle' more often than I originally thought. The reason is simple. It's a matter of balance. Surprisingly, the handle is located in a position that allows a perfect balancing point for carrying with or without the Fluid Head attached. It makes carrying 'the Beast (my new name for it)' quite manageable. To be honest, I wasn't expecting it to balance so well. Go figure?

I'll add my one and only gripe to the others I've read here and elsewhere. No rubber feet! They're expensive and probably manufactured in limited quantities. However, IMHO this is a mature design, it's been around for quite a while, any 'tooling and setup costs' have long been paid for by sales, advertising revenue, etc. IMHO, Sachtler should be giving the 'little red feet" away as door prizes during the annual holiday party, and, they should be hanging from rearview mirrors in cars! : ) Well, you get the idea. Arrgghh! It just seems overly frugal. JMHO, YMMV. : )

In closing, I'd also like to take this opportunity to thank Barbara Jauman at Vitec for her willingness to go the extra-mile for me and the DVInfo Community. We're lucky to have people of this caliber supporting us with excellent Customer Service!

To paraphrase the immortal Paul Hogan, a.k.a., Michael J."Crocodile" Dundee, 'Now this is a tripod!'

So far, no 'buyer's remorse'. Maybe when I see the credit card bill? : )

Thanks for playing along.

Best regards,

J.

Last edited by James Kuhn; July 27th, 2013 at 08:19 PM.
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Old July 28th, 2013, 02:27 AM   #6
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

James, you've definitely stepped into the serious league with those sticks. On the occasions that I've had the pleasure to use them they haven't disappointed. There are only a couple of tripods that I've found that provide as stable a support.
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Old July 28th, 2013, 10:38 AM   #7
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Thanks, Garrett!

It may be overkill for me at this juncture, but I won't be able to blame the tripod if my footage is shaky. : )

What I'm most impressed with at the moment, is the Sachtler 100/150 Mid-Level Spreader. Like everything about the tripod, the Spreader is a seriously overbuilt piece of equipment. After playing with it for a little while, I can honestly say, I never knew what I was missing.

Your council is always appreciated.

Best regards,

J.
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Old July 28th, 2013, 01:03 PM   #8
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

James,
Congratulations!

I have been using this tripod for the last few years and am pretty happy with it.

The sachtler will last for a long time due to its good build. Last month I was hiking 12000 feet in the Himalaya, and it was a huge challenge taking it to that height. It has seen desert, ocean, floods and what not. :) Here is the link to the brief write up that I had done several years back Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

These tripods will outlast the cameras. So better to spend more money on tripod. (The credit card cries once). :)

Cheers,
Sabyasachi
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Old July 28th, 2013, 02:31 PM   #9
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Sabyasachi...thank you for your thoughtful response. I am quite familiar with your review of the CF-100 ENG, having read it at least 6 or 7 times, it contributed significantly in my purchasing decision. I should have mentioned it earlier. Again, thank you!

Best regards,

J.
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Old July 29th, 2013, 11:03 AM   #10
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Minor correction. Apparently my 'calibrated eye' needs maintenance. The two uppermost CF Leg sections as well as the middle Leg Sections are 20mm (NOT 25mm). I originally just 'eye-balled' the dimension.

FYI, I ordered the 'Rubber Feet (p/n: 7004) for the tripod. At that price, I may end-up wearing them around my neck as jewelry! : )

Best regards,

J.

Last edited by James Kuhn; July 29th, 2013 at 11:13 AM. Reason: Too, just.
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Old August 1st, 2013, 12:43 PM   #11
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

To all...I hope your day is going well. My "Red Rubber Feet" were delivered a day earlier than expected. Yay! Thanks, B&H Photo/Big Brown!

Like everything associated with this tripod, the 'Red Rubber Feet' are big. : ) They add a bit of flexibility and I can tell you from experience, 'rubber feet' are a lot easier on 'human feet'. The Sachtler 'Spikes' are sharp, like Bear's teeth! I was 'bitten' on the right toe the first day after it arrived. Ouch!

I completed my 'Clamping Screw Friction Cup Mod'. It worked out perfectly! I'm using the original 'FSB-8 Clamping Screw' after removing the 'original Friction Cup' (R/R one Circlip) and replacing it with the '75mm to 100mm Adapter kit Friction Cup' (R/R one Circlip) and four (4) S.S. Washers as spacers, the 'Mod' is complete. I'm also using the 'Adapter Kit's Shorter attachment screw. It allows me to cinch-up the 'Fluid-Head' nice and tight.

Overall, I'm very pleased.

Best regards,

J.
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Old August 3rd, 2013, 01:38 AM   #12
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Thanks James! I am happy that my review has helped.

I agree with you that the rubber feet is pretty costly. It however helps. I remove the rubber feet when I am on treks, however, one should be careful about the sharp points as one can get hurt.
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Old August 3rd, 2013, 11:22 AM   #13
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Re: Sachtler CF-100 ENG HD 2 CF Tripod

Sabyasachi, thank you again for an excellent review!

Now, that I've 'lived' with my new CF-100ENG 2CF for a few more days, I'm even more impressed.

The 75mm to 100mm Bowl Adapter is absolutely rock-solid. No slippage or movement of any kind. Good work Sachtler! My only comment (Not a complaint) is the 'Adapter Plate' sits in the bowl receptacle and is not friction fit, nor is it mechanically attached to the tripod by set-screws, etc.. When the Fluid Head is removed, I invariably forget and it ends-up falling on the ground. I read a DIY Tip (Probably here.) about using a few spots of Super-Glue around the diameter (Not on the 'bowl' contact points); that should help.

The 'Red Rubber Feet' do add versatility to the overall rig and quite frankly are an essential element to the 'system' (my friend's wooden floors appreciated them). However, the 'Bear's Teeth Spikes' are the answer when the terrain is a little less forgiving. They remind me of a Surveyor's Theodolite Tripod, with big 'Sand Spikes'.

Thank goodness this is the "last tripod I'll ever have to buy"! ; ) And does anyone want to buy the Brooklyn Bridge?

Regards,

J.
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