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Tripod for Nikon ED82 ?

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Old Wednesday 19th July 2017, 16:11   #1
Darkus_Markus
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Tripod for Nikon ED82 ?

Hello,

I've recently purchased a used ED82, with a budget of around 150 (ideally less) I just wondered what you guys would recommend tripod wise ?

The primary use will be driving to reserves and walking between viewing area's, probably no hiking etc.

I've been looking at the...
Velbon Sherpa 200R
Velbon SUB-65 3-in-1
Bushnell advanced 784030


Any help much appreciated.
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Old Wednesday 19th July 2017, 16:31   #2
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Slik Master is another option - quite heavy but robust and reliable in my experience.
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Old Wednesday 19th July 2017, 16:37   #3
Saxatilis
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Darkus Markus
I also have a Nikon Fieldscope ED 82A used and have had various tripods including the Velbon Sherpa 200R.
In my experience (I tried to mount the scope on it) the Sherpa 200R is unsuited for this purpose, albeit a good tripod indeed for general use.
I currently use this scope with a Velbon GEO N 630, a carbon model, which is of superior quality and better suited for heavier loads: I find the stone bag feature to be particularly useful for adding tripod stability in windy conditions. It's coupled with a Manfrotto 701 HDV video head.
Remaining among the tripods I own, the sturdiest of all is no doubt the wooden tripod from Berlebach, the excellent #3022 model with a larger Manfrotto head (501HDV), but this combo is decidedly cumbersome and heavy if you have to walk

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Old Wednesday 19th July 2017, 17:50   #4
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I also had a Sherpa 200R tripod and found it to be somewhat lacking. In moderate winds, vibration really became an issue and made the zoom unusable.
I changed to an old Manfrotto 144b and 701 head, and this is an excellent combo, it is surprising the difference a weighty tripod can make to the viewing experience. I suspect a carbon fibre tripod may also be a good option, but the above combo can be obtained well inside your budget and is every bit as sturdy as my Velbon CF645.

I'm not sure I'd recommend any of those you have listed, they all look a bit flimsy. A used Manfrotto or Velbon CF series will serve you much better.

Enjoy, it is a truly wonderful scope.
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Old Wednesday 19th July 2017, 20:55   #5
Darkus_Markus
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Thanks for all the advice, I guess the Velbon sherpa and 3-in-1 can be scratched from list.

The Bushnell seems pretty tough though, Alot of the recommendations appear to be older stock so will need to research their modern counterparts.

In terms of Manfrotto, how about this one ?
https://www.manfrotto.co.uk/290-xtra...8rc-fluid-head

Cheers
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 07:01   #6
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Hi,

you might want to ask the seller of this a few questions... the legs could be nice - carbon, 3 leg sections and twist lugs - the head is probably not so great for our use and could be sold to get sth better...

Ask for diameter of the upper and lower leg section, height with legs extended with column up and down and maybe a detail image or two of the top end where legs join and the type marking...

https://www.gumtree.com/p/tripods-su...ead/1252773368

Joachim, who scored very nice Velbon Carmagne 535 legs for 90€ used - they're great!
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 11:59   #7
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Thanks for the link jring, that does seem like a good deal though does one need to be wary about buying 2nd hand carbon items ?

Looking around I can get the following for around 200 new, which to my mind would seem adequate...

Manfrotto 128RC head with a Manfrotto 055 tripod.

Cheers
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 15:55   #8
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Originally Posted by Darkus_Markus View Post
Thanks for the link jring, that does seem like a good deal though does one need to be wary about buying 2nd hand carbon items ?

Looking around I can get the following for around 200 new, which to my mind would seem adequate...

Manfrotto 128RC head with a Manfrotto 055 tripod.

Cheers
Hi,

I have not seen any problem with my used carbon legs - maybe others know sth I don't about the dangers of buying carbon tripods used...

The 055 is certainly adequate but a bit on the heavy side (at least the aluminum versions with 2.5 kg). My Velbon legs are more like 1.5 kg.

I'm not a big fan of the 128RC for an 80mm scope - it's too flimsy for that in my opinion. I use a 500AH which is a lot more stable and allows to balance the scope due to the long plate - this is very nice since you can then use very low friction settings for smooth panning. If the scope is unbalanced, you need to have more friction in altitude...

PS: If you really want to go with the 128 RC, I have a spare one - barely used ;-)

Joachim

Last edited by jring : Thursday 20th July 2017 at 15:59. Reason: added shameless plug
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 17:34   #9
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I now use a set of manfrotto 44I CARBONONE ,also purchased used,and It would be hard to go back to aluminum,..mine is a large ,sturdy,three section unit,but is pretty light at 1,3 kg,,The head is the 128RC and that in itself adds some good 950 gr,so I am not super happy with it..the operation of the head is fine,but kind of heavy ,,my scope weights 1750 gr with the Baader Hyperion Zoom mounted!..a first version 823, yes,not very resilient ,fragile and whatever,But is the lightest full size scope i have owned,so I would like to get a lighter fluid head sometime to minimize the set up total weight..If i am biking or plan to walk a lot,i sometimes use a manfrotto large ball head(an old model,forgot the number)weighting about 450gr..that makes a big difference and is not that bad to use in the field,specially letting the plate sit sideways,fixed on the groove and rotating the scope..Anyway,my advice is to buy a light fluid head like the manfrotto 700rc2,and start shaving some ounces there...then If you could find a good deal in carbon,go for it,othewrwise a used manfrotto 190 aluminum is always a good tripod and not that much heavier than a carbon unit..
I also have an OOOLD Davis and Sanford,Two sections,about 40mm diameter legs,SUPER light aluminum,that I modified to use a regular tripo head...Is only four feet tall,a bit more with the 128 head on,fixed column,one leg position..dont use it in the field,because is not versatile and has too many limitations,BUT IS SO STURDY!
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 18:00   #10
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Hi,

I would certainly not consider the 700rc2 for a full size scope - it is rated for 2.5kg only and will not work well with an 80mm spotter!

Regarding 128RC and 500AH, they're the same weight (900 sth grams) and rated for 4kg (128RC) and 5kg (500AH). The 500AH is a lot better for reasons named above...

Joachim
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 20:05   #11
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Sorry I forgot to mention, I don't imagine i'll be using anything higher than a 50x eyepiece. I have the zoom but i'm not a huge fan. Just in case that makes a significant difference to anybodies recomendations. All appreciated by the way.
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Old Thursday 20th July 2017, 21:30   #12
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Just my thoughts, but I find that scopes are very demanding on tripods - probably more so than long camera lenses!

My current scope is an old Kowa TSN4 with an Opticron SDL V2 eyepiece and it is far more susceptible to vibration than my Canon 800 F5.6 L IS (the longest lens Canon/Nikon currently make). Ideally I would suggest a 3 series Gitzo (2 series at a push) but, new, these are hopelessly over your budget!

There are other brands that do a good job - but they are expensive too! My suggestion would be to wait a bit and scour the used market. For example a few years ago I picked up a 3 series Gitzo 3 series Systematic (no center column so its much more rigid) for 100 used. I coped with 600/800mm lenses and did an excellent job with my scope yet didn't weigh a ton.

Wait, save, scour the used market and get something that will do the job really well rather than compromising - just my 2p.

Last edited by johnf3f : Thursday 20th July 2017 at 21:31. Reason: spelling
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Old Friday 21st July 2017, 02:32   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jring View Post
Hi,

I would certainly not consider the 700rc2 for a full size scope - it is rated for 2.5kg only and will not work well with an 80mm spotter!

Regarding 128RC and 500AH, they're the same weight (900 sth grams) and rated for 4kg (128RC) and 5kg (500AH). The 500AH is a lot better for reasons named above...

Joachim
I have read some comments of people that use this head and works ok with a scope.I dont think the performance would be much different to the 128rc,and the 128rc is fine to my use,except for the weight..Honestly I havent tried It, so I would have to test it myself to confirm its capability but i am inclined to believe it would work ok,specially when resting (the tripod)on my shoulder.

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Old Friday 21st July 2017, 06:37   #14
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Hi,

maybe I'm a bit more picky than others - I want to be able to easily aim (thanks to Kimmo's cable tie sight) or pan at a medium friction level and not have to tighten anything when letting the handle go (which often made the scope sag a bit on the 128RC). The 500AH allows me to balance the scope so this works perfectly...

Also sth very much recommended is a scopac or equivalent so you don't have to carry the tripod on your shoulder which can be an annoying or even painful experience - the latter if the tripod is not padded (which can be done diy).

Joachim
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Old Friday 21st July 2017, 13:53   #15
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The 500AH i've found to be a superb head, particularly regarding the ability to find the centre of gravity of the scope so you can leave it fairly 'loose' and not have it drop. However, it's a heavy old thing, and i have been using a 700RC2 with a Kowa 883 during the summer; there seems to be no problem at all with the combination. The Kowa is unusually light for its size though; with the TE-11WZ zoom eyepiece it comes in at around 1.8kg, comfortably inside the recommended 2.5kg for the 700RC2. Just tighten everything before you walk away from it...
I changed from a Velbon tripod to a Viking TR100 Plus, which comes in at around 150. Not carbon, but lightweight, with three-section legs and the ability to spread them for sitting purposes, and completely invert for packing in suitcases.
The 500AH will come out again when the winds start to blow and sea-watching begins!
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Old Sunday 23rd July 2017, 18:55   #16
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Thanks for all the feedback guys, I went into London yesterday and came back with the Manfrotto 500AH head and Alu 055 legs.

Combined with the ED82 the whole rig is around 5KG. Certainly not exactly light but I'm hoping it'll be manageable walking around a reserve.

Cheers
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Old Sunday 23rd July 2017, 21:47   #17
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If you get a scopac, it is quite manageable...

Joachim
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Old Sunday 21st July 2019, 14:29   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkus_Markus View Post
Thanks for all the feedback guys, I went into London yesterday and came back with the Manfrotto 500AH head and Alu 055 legs.

Combined with the ED82 the whole rig is around 5KG. Certainly not exactly light but I'm hoping it'll be manageable walking around a reserve.

Cheers
I will also buy an ED82 as an addition to my ED50 and need a tripod.
Is the Manfrotto combination a recommendation for tall people too? I'm about 2 meters high and have to use the middle column I think.

Is the 501 head also good enough for the ED82?
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Old Sunday 21st July 2019, 17:46   #19
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Hi,

my Velbon carbon legs are 1.25m with column down (they have a quite large spread angle - nice for stability). The 500AH and my angled Kowa add 25cm. I tend to use them with about 10 to 20cm of column extension, often none at all when using it in a group (I'm 1,88m).

The stability with 10cm extended is still quite good, 20cm might be a bit shaky in windy conditions but that is only used when I'm looking up...

In general, measure your eye height (or just subtract 10cm from your height), subtract about 25cm for an angled scope plus head and that's how high your tripod needs to be. With angled you can get away with a bit less as it's easy to lower your head a bit.

The Manfrotto 055 legs mentioned are 1,40m with column down, Gitzo has long models (number ending in an L) with 1,50 (and even taller XL and G for giant examples). The pricing for all Gitzos will make you cry, but they're worth it...

I'd say you can get away with 1,40m legs and a few cm of center column.

PS: the 501 head is quite a bit beefier than the usual 500AH and about double the weight (1800g vs 900g). You will be fine with the 500AH unless you plan to use a BTX95.

Joachim

Last edited by jring : Monday 22nd July 2019 at 16:12.
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Old Sunday 21st July 2019, 18:13   #20
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Originally Posted by steppsch View Post
I will also buy an ED82 as an addition to my ED50 and need a tripod.
Is the Manfrotto combination a recommendation for tall people too? I'm about 2 meters high and have to use the middle column I think.

Is the 501 head also good enough for the ED82?
Although this tripod is 4 sections it still ticks the boxes for stability and height without being too heavy. Cheaper than Gizo too.

Benro Mach3 TMA38CL Carbon Fibre 4 Section Tripod

Max load: 16 kg
Max height (24 Leg Angle) w/column extended: 69.69 in / 177 cm
Max height (24 Leg Angle) w/column retracted: 60.24 in / 153 cm
Min height: 13.98 in (35.5 cm)
Max height: 69.69 in (177 cm)
Folded length: 23.2 in (58.93 cm)
Leg sections: 4
Leg lock type: Twist
Weight: 4.52 lb / 2.05 kg

I prefer straight scopes and plan to get one at some point...
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Old Monday 22nd July 2019, 02:24   #21
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...Benro Mach3 TMA38CL Carbon Fibre 4 Section Tripod...
I got the aluminum version of that tripod for my students to use. It is nice and big and tall and operates well. I assume the CF version damps vibration better. One flaw is that it has the center column design (seen on many Chinese tripods) that doesn't entirely secure the center column from rotating a few degrees each way, no matter how hard the column lock is tightened--an irritation sometimes when panning with a fluid head.

--AP
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Old Monday 22nd July 2019, 12:31   #22
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As I wrote in the post #3 just two years ago, since I bought a secondhand Nikon ED 82A I always it paired with a Velbon GEO 630N, a three-section carbon tripod - also used-. It is suited to my height: for comfort observation with my ED82 angled model, I had to take into account a tripod with an height (column all retracted) of 130-131cm to which should be added further 9/10 cm for the head on top. In your case, Steppsch, with the ED 82 straight model, the Manfrotto 055 could be OK or be still inadequate: you have to consider the height at the eye level, with a certain accuracy, making a simple calculation.

The head on it is still the Manfrotto 701 HDV, a fine fluid head that did not obtain the success and the spread it deserves in my opinion.
This set is pretty light and manageable, but sufficiently solid and I observe in a windy area. To gain extra stability, a soft pochette can be used as a stone bag, tightening the first leg section: I have used it very seldom (in the trunk of my car I am keeping an old 2 kg-weight for balance...) however. In the old line of Velbon carbon tripods, there was a couple of upper models (730 830 If I remember correctly) best suited for tall persons.

In a very few cases (observations at a fixed location and some meters away from my car...) I have tried a rock steady combo (Berlebach Report 3022 + Manfrotto HDV 501 video head), extremely heavy and large, as stated.
But this set of mine actually is that one I planned for the use with the Celestron C5: my Berlebach wooden tripod is also quite tall, with 143 cm (with column retracted without head: it has just two leg sections, very long however): I had purchased it before for a straight model, the Leica APO Televid 77.

Last edited by Saxatilis : Monday 22nd July 2019 at 19:38.
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Old Monday 22nd July 2019, 14:03   #23
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I got the aluminum version of that tripod for my students to use. It is nice and big and tall and operates well. I assume the CF version damps vibration better. One flaw is that it has the center column design (seen on many Chinese tripods) that doesn't entirely secure the center column from rotating a few degrees each way, no matter how hard the column lock is tightened--an irritation sometimes when panning with a fluid head.

--AP
Hi Alexis

I haven't tried the aluminium version so I can't comment but I did have a bigger CF Benro with a similar locking mechanism and didn't have any problems. I've not noticed it either on other non Benro aluminium tripods with a similar mechanism.

I tried the CF 38 in a shop and didn't notice anything so hopefully the issue doesn't afflict it but it is something I will need to check before purchase.
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Old Monday 22nd July 2019, 19:59   #24
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Hi Alexis

I haven't tried the aluminium version so I can't comment but I did have a bigger CF Benro with a similar locking mechanism and didn't have any problems. I've not noticed it either on other non Benro aluminium tripods with a similar mechanism.

I tried the CF 38 in a shop and didn't notice anything so hopefully the issue doesn't afflict it but it is something I will need to check before purchase.
I find the problem exists in most tripods that have a groove in the center column to (otherwise) prevent rotation.

--AP
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Old Tuesday 23rd July 2019, 00:31   #25
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