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09-25-2008, 05:39 AM   #1
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Aftermarket tripod collar for lens? Does it exist?

I'm using a Vivitar series 1 70-210, and it works fine with my K20D. However, I recently acquired a 2X teleconverter (and yeah, I know all about how it degrades IQ) and suddenly, the appartus (lens +TC) becomes to much for the camera, apparently. Even when mounted on a tripod, the image wobbles around a lot, especially when focusing and zooming (Live View does not help...)

I think attaching the lens (or TC) to the tripod instead of the camera would help tremendously, so I looked around for a generic tripod collar, and only found a few made specifically for Canon lenses. Since the diameter seems fixed, I doubt it will work on my appartus.

Are there any generic colars out there? Or a tutorial on how to make one?

09-25-2008, 06:02 AM   #2
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If you have calipers, you need to measure the diameter of the lens barrel where the ring would fit. Then find a piece of PVC pipe at a plumbing shop that is close to that size. At a hardware store find a pair of plastic screw knobs that have a 10-15mm long threaded shaft. Cut the PVC section to the width you want, drill the screw holes through and line the inside with some rubber tape (not electrical tape - too slippery). Use the knobs to tighten the ring on the lens. On one spot underneath, drill a hole to fit a 1.4" tipod mount screw. Mount your QR plate to the ring there. If you can find a spare QR plate, use a little contact cement and semi permanently mount the plate with the glue/screw combo.
09-25-2008, 08:06 AM   #3
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One thing that I have always found troubling, with respect to any clamp that goes around a single point especially on the teleconverter, is the lack of stability it seems to give.

This is because the clamp surface was not designed to be wide enough for a proper clamp, and / or it is not in the center of gravity for the total combination, so it ballances well on a tripod.

even if you successfully make a collar for the teleconverter, i would suggest two additional points to consider.

Add a plate to go between the camera's own tripod mount to the lens collar, and, make that plate long enough (i.e. possibly extending forward from the lens collar) so that youor actual tripod mount is at the center of gravity of the entire assembly (lens plus TC plus camera)

You will find the entire assembly much better balanced, and more stable from vibration which is principally due to rotation within the lens collar.
09-25-2008, 09:11 AM   #4
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What tripod are you using?

Lowell makes excellent points. But if you are using a tripod that is only designed to support a basic camera and lens you may never get away from the frustration you have now. Adding bits to fix a wobble in one area and can lead to instability in other areas.

The bigger lenses have their own tripod mounts to better balance the center of gravity of the whole system. Having a long, heavy lens system supported on the camera's tripod mount puts a lot of stress on that mount. Not a good idea. You can damage the camera and the whole setup can be very unstable: like crashing to the ground...

You might be able to achieve a DIY bracket that repositions the center of gravity. Or you may have to buy the real thing. Some of these removable plates and tripod attachments can get expensive though.

But in the end I would take a fresh look at your tripod and revaluate if its up to the task to begin with.

09-25-2008, 10:28 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Photomaximum Quote
What tripod are you using?

Lowell makes excellent points. But if you are using a tripod that is only designed to support a basic camera and lens you may never get away from the frustration you have now. Adding bits to fix a wobble in one area and can lead to instability in other areas.

The bigger lenses have their own tripod mounts to better balance the center of gravity of the whole system. Having a long, heavy lens system supported on the camera's tripod mount puts a lot of stress on that mount. Not a good idea. You can damage the camera and the whole setup can be very unstable: like crashing to the ground...

You might be able to achieve a DIY bracket that repositions the center of gravity. Or you may have to buy the real thing. Some of these removable plates and tripod attachments can get expensive though.

But in the end I would take a fresh look at your tripod and revaluate if its up to the task to begin with.
I think you have missed the point of th eOP.


While your comment about tripods is vaild, it is not what the OP is concerned with.
The OP wants to add a tripod mount to a TC to avoid overstressing the camera mount with over 2+ pounds cantalivered off the camera's own tripod mount.

I have the same vivitar series 1 lens. It has no tripod collar and no place on the lens to mount one. The lens itself is over 2 pounds and on my old Ricoh XR-2s it was heavy enough to distort the camera body and cause intermittent loss of power for the camera batteries. This was a common complaint of early 1980's SLRs not just Ricoh, and the lack of tripod mounts on MANY heavy zooms of the day.
09-25-2008, 11:17 AM   #6
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You are correct, Lowell, I understand the physics of the tripod, I am just trying to find a colar that fits around my TC to improve the stability. It cannot be much worse than what I have now I would have thought a solid sliding loop made of a metal band, for instance, would be available, as it could fit around various lenses. The Vivitar can hardly accomodate a collar, but the TC could, easily.

Maybe I'll figure out a DIY or try the suggestion above, but I'd like to find a more elegant way to do it, if possible.
09-25-2008, 11:59 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
You are correct, Lowell, I understand the physics of the tripod, I am just trying to find a colar that fits around my TC to improve the stability. It cannot be much worse than what I have now I would have thought a solid sliding loop made of a metal band, for instance, would be available, as it could fit around various lenses. The Vivitar can hardly accomodate a collar, but the TC could, easily.

Maybe I'll figure out a DIY or try the suggestion above, but I'd like to find a more elegant way to do it, if possible.
Search ebay. There are several Chinese sellers, that sell tripod collars for several Canon lenses, as the original Canon collars are excessively expensive. You may find one there, which fits the tc barrell.

By the way: I used to have a Vivitar 70-200/3.8 Serie I lens in the long and distant past (even before switching to Pentax) and it was a fine lens. It had a dedicated 2x-tc. If you find one of these old dedicated TCs, the image quality is much better, than the combination with any other tc.

Ben
09-25-2008, 12:06 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
You are correct, Lowell, I understand the physics of the tripod, I am just trying to find a colar that fits around my TC to improve the stability. It cannot be much worse than what I have now I would have thought a solid sliding loop made of a metal band, for instance, would be available, as it could fit around various lenses. The Vivitar can hardly accomodate a collar, but the TC could, easily.

Maybe I'll figure out a DIY or try the suggestion above, but I'd like to find a more elegant way to do it, if possible.
Don't be down on DIY.

I made this for my 300mmF4.

I elected this route as opposed to the TC simply because I got a better center of gravity, and more stability.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/gallery/images/1116/1_100_2666__2_.JPG

09-25-2008, 05:51 PM   #9
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I searched eBay, and found a collar for a 300 mm lens, nothing more. I might have used bad keywords, though, I'll look some more.

I might also try the DYI, we'll see.

Thanks for the input.
09-25-2008, 06:47 PM   #10
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They also sell some tripod collars on dealextreme.com
09-25-2008, 07:27 PM   #11
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I donít know if the lens is worth it (financially) to you but have you considered having a tripod collar made at a local machine shop? I've posted this in another link but it seems to fit here as well. I had one made by a machinist friend for my Pentax K 300 f4. I find it works very well on a monopod or tripod. One needs steadier hands than mine to hand hold this puppy.

I took a few shots of the tripod collar I had made for this lens. I designed it with the help of a machinist friend who made it in his shop. As many have noted this lens is hefty, especially on the front end, and needs a collar. This one works well for me and makes the SMC 300 f4 more versatile. With the collar in place it ballances perfectly on monopod or tripod. The shake reduction of the K10 is just an added bonus.







It wasn't terriibly expensive as I recall ($50.00) and was worth every dime in my opinion.

Cheers

TG

Last edited by 8540tomg; 09-25-2008 at 07:29 PM. Reason: typo
05-28-2009, 03:50 AM   #12
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how did you make yours Lowell?

I need to make something like that for the Pentax 70~210 F4 zoom I just got...
05-28-2009, 06:07 PM   #13
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check plumber supply store

Get a 2 1/2 " cast iron pipe clamp, they have a screw to open and tighten. I put a small foam pad around the inside. It is tapped on the bottom and fasten a 2" plate to it then to the pod. I made mine 15 years ago.
05-29-2009, 09:14 AM   #14
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Hi bdery,

There is the Manfrotto 293 lens support -- a bit bulky, and perhaps somewhat cumbersome to attach, but it should solve your problem, and is essentially universal since it doesn't rely on a precise fit to the lens.

Manfrotto by Bogen Imaging | 293 Telephoto Lens Support | 293

Scott
05-29-2009, 09:33 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by nottoohairy Quote
I need to make something like that for the Pentax 70~210 F4 zoom I just got...
How did I make mine, it's pretty easy if you look closely at it.

you really only need to make it from 2-3 parts. I tried making a custom foot to go into my monfretto ball head, which works but in the end was probably a waste of time.

what you need to do is purchase 2 pieces of aluminum bar stock from Home Depot.

get a 1 inch by 1/8 inch piece and a 1/2 inch by 1/8 inch piece.

The "hoop" was made by bending the 1.2 inch wide piece around a cylinder that was the same diameter as the lens.

The bottom plate was made by laminating 2 pieces of the 1 inch wide material together (i used epoxy and rivits)

then I rivited the hoop to the bottom plate (also had epoxy to secure it)

I lined the hoop with leather (use contact cement here) and put a leather pad below the camera base.

All rivit holes were counter sunk and filled with epoxy just to make it smooth.

Depending upon the lens and camera you may need to build up the plate at the end where the hoop mounts as every camera has a different bottom plate to centerline of lens distance (at least my K10 was different than the *istD), and every lens is a different diameter to a point where you can place the hoop.

You will note the hoop is open at the top. (it really only covers about 200 degrees) and it does not work for vertical format, you have to put the ball head on it's side for that.

I drilled and tapped a tripod hole (1/4 inch 20 threads per inch) at the ballance point for the lens, TC and camera.
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