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11-30-2008, 10:29 PM   #16
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One thing I noticed right away with the A600 was just how badly placed the trpod socket is. I ended up using the longest mounting plate that Wimberley sells and using some draft stop foam for sealing doors as a cradle at the front of the lens.
This was the only way I could get a balance that I liked on the gimbal.
I mounted the Wimberley to a Zone VI Standard tripod (arout 18 pounds of hardwood...). This seems to keep everything nice and stable.

A word to the wise about the Super Program: It is a very bouncy little camera. I ran a little test some years ago and was very disturbed by how much tripod was required to keep a Super Program from shaking.
Unfortunately, I've misplaced the back-up CD that I had it on.
I have a Manfrotto 055, an 029 as well as the Zone VI.
It took the Zone VI to steady the Super Program with a 400mm lens mounted.

IIRC, the problem shutter speed range was between ~1/8 second and 1/60th second.
In that range it bounced worse than a Chevy truck on a washboard road.

11-30-2008, 11:04 PM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
One thing I noticed right away with the A600 was just how badly placed the trpod socket is. I ended up using the longest mounting plate that Wimberley sells and using some draft stop foam for sealing doors as a cradle at the front of the lens.
This was the only way I could get a balance that I liked on the gimbal.
I mounted the Wimberley to a Zone VI Standard tripod (arout 18 pounds of hardwood...). This seems to keep everything nice and stable.

A word to the wise about the Super Program: It is a very bouncy little camera. I ran a little test some years ago and was very disturbed by how much tripod was required to keep a Super Program from shaking.
Unfortunately, I've misplaced the back-up CD that I had it on.
I have a Manfrotto 055, an 029 as well as the Zone VI.
It took the Zone VI to steady the Super Program with a 400mm lens mounted.

IIRC, the problem shutter speed range was between ~1/8 second and 1/60th second.
In that range it bounced worse than a Chevy truck on a washboard road.
RE: Balance, thanks for the suggestion. The screwy balance has really annoyed me. IT hadn't occurred to me that there might be somewhere an offset mounting plate that would compensate for the imbalance.

I can successfully use the A300 f2.8 on a monopod but this thing
is impossible. I have considered revving up my machine shop
and fabbing a carrying handle that would attach to the tripod mount and foward on the barrell somewhere with a place on the handle to mount the tripod near the center of balance (which for those of you who haven't seen the lens---is more ethan 6 inches forward of the provided tripod mount.

It would be a lot better mount if you didn't have to stand on the rear leg of the tripod to keep it from tipping over

I did get a remote shutter release so butter fingers wouldn't move thte camera pushing the button.
12-01-2008, 10:41 PM   #18
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This is how I have my 600 arranged. The balance point is fairly far forwards, but is very usable. I can achieve perfect balance on the gimbal very easily

Last edited by Wheatfield; 02-05-2011 at 08:44 PM.
12-02-2008, 08:27 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
This is how I have my 600 arranged. The balance point is fairly far forwards, but is very usable. I can achieve perfect balance on the gimbal very easily

that is a reasonable design. The actual balance point is even further forward, but at least your adapater makes the offfset
reasonable, and the weight of the camera has to be considered.

Does your lens focus smoothly??? Mine exhibits some stiffness,
and also some looseness in the barrel, though this can be adjusted with the setscrew forward of the "Pentax -A star"

Having never seen another one of these monsters I don't know if that is normal or not. --- my A300 certainly is NOT like this. On it the focus turns freely, and there is no evidence of slack in the barrell (i.e.--if you pick up the lens by both ends you can flex it a little)

12-02-2008, 09:31 AM   #20
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I used to have the white A* 400/2.8 and that lens began a focus stiffness problem. The focusing action was not as smooth as it once was. I found out that there were these tiny white plastic roller washer things that were part of the internal focus action. At the time I got replacements from Pentax which fixed the problem...
12-02-2008, 02:46 PM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by rvannatta Quote
that is a reasonable design. The actual balance point is even further forward, but at least your adapater makes the offfset
reasonable, and the weight of the camera has to be considered.

Does your lens focus smoothly??? Mine exhibits some stiffness,
and also some looseness in the barrel, though this can be adjusted with the setscrew forward of the "Pentax -A star"

Having never seen another one of these monsters I don't know if that is normal or not. --- my A300 certainly is NOT like this. On it the focus turns freely, and there is no evidence of slack in the barrell (i.e.--if you pick up the lens by both ends you can flex it a little)
I had real problems with getting it to balance with the istD. I had to have the battery pack on, and even then if I was using lithium batteries rather then nickel hydrides, the balance was far enough forwards that I was attaching the lens pretty much right behind the hood.
With the K10/20 and battery grip, the point of balance is several inches back of the hood.
Mine focuses quite smoothly, though there is a bit of noise from the mechanism. Probably it could use a CLA.
Don't forget that the focus limiter will cause the focus to notch at it's click stop.
The hood requires a "touch". It has to by pulled out or pushed back absolutely perpendicular to the barrel.

If you are having issues with yours, I think they are well worth sending in for service. I'll probably send mine in later this winter to have mine checked over.
They shouldn't exhibit any amount of flex in the body, though some lateral shifting of the hood is probably inevitable.
12-02-2008, 07:55 PM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
If you are having issues with yours, I think they are well worth sending in for service. I'll probably send mine in later this winter to have mine checked over.
They shouldn't exhibit any amount of flex in the body, though some lateral shifting of the hood is probably inevitable.
Send it? Where? as an Obsolete lens I've been less than sure where it could be sent. Clearly it is a very valuable piece of glass and I'm not eager to drop it off
at the local "we fix anything shop" for their fixitman to play with.

Will Pentax USA take one of these in????
12-02-2008, 09:12 PM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by rvannatta Quote
Send it? Where? as an Obsolete lens I've been less than sure where it could be sent. Clearly it is a very valuable piece of glass and I'm not eager to drop it off
at the local "we fix anything shop" for their fixitman to play with.

Will Pentax USA take one of these in????
I'm in Canada, so I don't know much about the USA repair services, but I bet a new thread asking for advice would net some excellent answers.
I'll be sending mine off to Pentax once I've confirmed with them that they'll service it.
If they won't, I have a bit of a search on my hands as well.
Generally, if parts aren't needed, servicing a lens isn't a problem.

I've heard talk of an Eric on the forum who does good repair work, and I presume he is in the States. I don't know if he does lenses or bodies, or both.

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