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Old Monday 6th June 2011, 19:46   #1
looksharp65
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Enhanced monopod

Long time ago I have promised to present my monopod solution.

http://www.birdforum.net/showthread....34#post2060334

The usual problem with a monopod is that there is no support to prevent horizontal movement.
This is how I solved it. On top of the monopod is a medium-sized ballhead set to rotate with some effort, which makes the stabilization better.
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Old Monday 6th June 2011, 19:48   #2
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Pics

1st image shows a bike bar-end attached to the monopod leg. 2nd and 3rd images show normal use. 4th and 5th image show alternative ways to use it.
To be honest, I have never used it like that.
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Old Monday 6th June 2011, 20:30   #3
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Transportation
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Old Monday 6th June 2011, 20:42   #4
Hermann
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Quote:
Originally Posted by looksharp65 View Post
Long time ago I have promised to present my monopod solution.
The usual problem with a monopod is that there is no support to prevent horizontal movement.
This is how I solved it.
Thanks for posting this. You're absolutely right, the problem with a monopod are the horizontal movements. The guys at Monostat (http://www.monostat.com/E/index.php) solved this by putting that funny looking rubber foot on their monopods, a solution that works extremely well in practice. The Monostat is by far the best monopod I've ever used. But your solution looks very simple and effective as well. I've still got an old Gitzo monopod somewhere, I'll have to give this a try.

Thanks again ...

Hermann
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Old Monday 6th June 2011, 20:58   #5
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You're absolutely right, the problem with a monopod are the horizontal movements.
Hermann
Thank you! With this solution, headwind is an occasional problem that causes vertical movement (when you sway in the wind, the scope follows you).
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Old Tuesday 7th June 2011, 14:19   #6
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Herman,

Thanks for the Monostat foot solution - I haven't seen that before. I use an ED50 with a monopod, so I'll be looking at this some more.

Just to clarify, the Monostat site says the foot stops rotation of the monopod about the longitudinal axis of the monopod (i.e. not "horizontal" movements). How does the foot work for you - is it the extra friction between the foot and the ground you get with a larger flat foot, or does the foot have several spikes as well ?

Thanks

Mark
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Old Tuesday 7th June 2011, 22:49   #7
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Just to clarify, the Monostat site says the foot stops rotation of the monopod about the longitudinal axis of the monopod (i.e. not "horizontal" movements). How does the foot work for you - is it the extra friction between the foot and the ground you get with a larger flat foot, or does the foot have several spikes as well ?
Actually, I think that may be a problem with the translation in the English version. The German version isn't much better though, it says "Stabilisierung in der vertikalen und horizontalen Koordinate". I think the name of the rubber foot explains its function much better, they call it "Rotationsstabilisator".

What actually happens is that the monopod itself turns in the rubber foot. So in effect you can pan the horizon by turning the monopod while the foot doesn't move at all. There's some slight friction, so any involuntary movements in the horizontal plane are dampened. There are not spikes in the foot, but that doesn't matter - I've never had the foot move, not even on slippery ground.

What the foot does is basically dampen any movements in the horizontal plane, and it's movements in the horizontal plane that make using a conventional monopod at high magnifications difficult. You can try that out by using a scope on a conventional monopod at high magnifications - it's the movements in the horizontal plane that cause the problems at higher magnifications of 20x and above.

Does that make any sense? It's really not that easy to explain. Maybe Arthur (Pinewood) can explain, I believe he's got a Monostat.

Hermann

By the way: If you know any professional photographers, ask them whether they've got a Monostat that you can try out. Monostats are quite popular among professional photographers, especially sports photographers, at least over here.
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Old Thursday 9th June 2011, 14:52   #8
4John
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Herman,

"Rotationsstabilisator" makes much more sense to me. Many thanks.

I'm still not sure how you get enough friction to damp sudden movements like gusts of wind, but not so much friction that it is hard to pan the scope without rotating the foot at the same time (unless you have something in the foot like the fluid capsules you get in tripod "video" heads). However, from your experience it clearly works, so it is worth a look.

However, the Monostat is well over 100 in the UK which is too much to buy online to try out with a risk the hassle having to send it back for a refund. I've therefore asked the UK distributor for UK stockists, so perhaps I can find one close by in a shop I can try out.

Mark
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Old Wednesday 15th June 2011, 18:40   #9
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Giottos 8970

The Giottos 8970 monopod has a spring-loaded foot you can stand on :

http://www.amateurphotographer.co.uk...8970_11278.php

Not as cheap as a bike bar end, but it looks like it works in a similar way. It also looks like it could be more effective than the Monostat at stopping, instead of just damping rotation, and it's significantly cheaper. You would have to remember to lift your foot when you wanted to pan though !

Mark
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Old Wednesday 15th June 2011, 21:59   #10
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You would have to remember to lift your foot when you wanted to pan though !

Mark
I'm panning with the ballhead, holding the scope in one or two hands.
The bar-end is firmly squeezed under my left foot until I need to change my position.
My idea won't work if one wants to pan the whole set including the monopod, because the leg hits the ground at an oblique angle (see the pics).

It is really very steady, but if there is a fence or similar to lean on, swaying/vertical movement will cease too.

//L
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