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Old Saturday 15th November 2014, 12:17   #1
CH79
Chris Heal

 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Wymondham
Posts: 45
Gitzo GT3530LS tripod info request

Hello,

Does anyone use the GT3530LS tripod (or used to own one) and can offer advice as to whether this tripod is suitable for 500m f/4 IS and Wimberley II? Any pro's and con's/issues concerning this tripod would be useful. Also, what should I expect to pay for a second hand unit?

If anyone can help by offering their experience of using such equipment it would be very appreciated.

Cheers,
Chris
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Old Saturday 15th November 2014, 17:33   #2
johnf3f
johnf3f

 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: South Wales UK
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I have exactly the same tripod and head and it works fine for the 600 F4 L IS and the 800 F5.6 L IS so I don't think you will have any issues with a 500 with or without extenders. I did try a friend's 5541 which was better but not enough to make any practical difference.
Are you buying a new or used Wimberley head? The reason I ask is that on older models the 3/8th mounting thread is made of alloy and can get damaged by cross threading. My solution to this is to remove the top plate of the tripod rather than the head when I have finished shooting. To help with this replace the Torx(?) bolt on the tripod by a 6mm dome head allen bolt of 15mm overall length. This is much better than the Gitzo original. An additional benefit is that you always know the top plate is properly tightened.
Prices are difficult as it is all about supply and demand, a Gitzo 3530 recently went for 310 pounds on E Bay if that is any help.
If you are finding the Gitzo prices a bit salty have a look at the older models.I also have a Gitzo G1329 Mk2 and it functions fine, and is quite adequate for my 800mm lens. The older leg locks are not quite as slik and the tripod is a little heavier but it works just as well.

P.S. Keep an eye out for spare top plates, they are often quite cheap and come in very handy.
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Old Saturday 15th November 2014, 18:09   #3
CH79
Chris Heal

 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Wymondham
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Thanks for that reply John, most useful!

I have options on two second hand 3530LS tripods. One is priced at 250 (the private seller said there is only a couple of marks to one of the twist locks), and the other priced at 350 stated as mint from a main Gitzo dealer in the UK.

I purchased a mint second hand Wimberley II head from MPB Photographic earlier this week. There is a card in the box dated March 2013 so I suspect the head is quite recent. However, replacing the 'Torx' bolt is a good idea - I've read elsewhere the original has a tendency to become loose over time if not checked regularly (which would be good practice to check the tightness in any case given the payload!)

Kind regards,
Chris
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Old Saturday 15th November 2014, 22:40   #4
johnf3f
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CH79 View Post
Thanks for that reply John, most useful!

I have options on two second hand 3530LS tripods. One is priced at 250 (the private seller said there is only a couple of marks to one of the twist locks), and the other priced at 350 stated as mint from a main Gitzo dealer in the UK.

I purchased a mint second hand Wimberley II head from MPB Photographic earlier this week. There is a card in the box dated March 2013 so I suspect the head is quite recent. However, replacing the 'Torx' bolt is a good idea - I've read elsewhere the original has a tendency to become loose over time if not checked regularly (which would be good practice to check the tightness in any case given the payload!)

Kind regards,
Chris
So long as you can inspect the used Gitzo then I would probably go for that one. They do pick up chips and knocks (mine has) but they are fairly bulletproof. However if you are in any doubt then, bite the bullet, and get that dearer one from the Gitzo dealer. As it is coming from a Gitzo dealer it should carry some sort of guarantee - just in case, after all you are buying this for the long term!
Here is a site for spares should you ever need them:
http://www.gitzospares.com/gt3530ls-parts.html

Your Wimberley is considerably more recent than mine so the part where the stud on the tripod engages should be steel so no worries there!

My main problem with the torx bolt is the way the supplied keys slip out and I bang my knuckles! If you can't find any suitable allen bolts then send me an SAE and I can post you 2 or 3 as I have plenty, PM me for address. Frankly these do a far better job and there is less risk to your fingers and little/no risk of burring the heads, though you will have to invest in an allen key or two.

With the Wimberley 2 and the Gitzo 3530 I think you have about the best support going for your lens. I include the latest models (eg 3532) in this as they offer a very marginal increase in rigidity, a weight increase and a BIG increase in price. I have tried the 3, 4 and 5 series of the latest models and was definitely not convinced.

Happy new toys - I hope you enjoy!
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Old Sunday 16th November 2014, 11:22   #5
CH79
Chris Heal

 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Wymondham
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Hi John,

I've gone down the main dealer route as they offer a 6 month guarantee on used gear - so I look forward to receiving the 3530 later in the week. Have also ordered a P40 plate from WEX so will be all set to go next weekend :)

Thanks for all the information and spare parts link - looks useful.

Kind regards,
Chris
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Old Sunday 16th November 2014, 20:45   #6
johnf3f
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CH79 View Post
Hi John,

I've gone down the main dealer route as they offer a 6 month guarantee on used gear - so I look forward to receiving the 3530 later in the week. Have also ordered a P40 plate from WEX so will be all set to go next weekend :)

Thanks for all the information and spare parts link - looks useful.

Kind regards,
Chris
Have fun!
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