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02-18-2018, 12:33 PM   #1
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Lens Swapping Without a Neck Strap?

Time for another useless Bruce thread

I wasn't sure where to put this thread, either perhaps Technique or perhaps here as the answer may involve some kinda accessory...

Basically I'm wondering how people lens swap in the field, specifically those doing it with cameras that are not using a neck strap. Can you successfully lens swap easily with a K-1 and a wrist strap? It strikes me as something quite awkward to manage...?

I'm not looking for answers that involve putting down a lens, camera or using a wall to assist or anything, just basically if the general consensus is that to do a lens swap semi quickly and easily is possible without a neck strap.

I'm finding my KP and K-1 is adding significant bulk when strapping. I actually have attached my straps to the L Plates etc, and I can't help feel a massive sense of freedom when I ditch those plates with their straps (for those shooting moments that I know tripoding is definitely not happening), however I can't figure out of realistically I can move in that direction 'in the field' when I may swap my primes semi frequently.

Fwiw I use the double lens caps by Optech, I have lenses around my waist in lens pouches for quick access, but thus far I have been replying on a neck strap to make the swap. Before ultra bad habits kick in I was wondering if folk have managed to lens swap comfortably with perhaps a lesser bulky wrist strap or something?

I have my storage for 'on the go' camera gear pretty much sorted, dropping a strap or two would actually make quite a difference to ease of packing away camera gear!

TIA!

Bruce

02-18-2018, 12:52 PM - 1 Like   #2
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Personally I would never work without a strap, though I use a sling, not neck.

However, that doesn't help you. My suggestion would be a lens swap waist bag of some type. With a good wrist strap you should be able to swap lenses with one hand provided you have an empty bag to put the lens in. So if you are running with a two lens setup you need a waist bag that holds both of your lenses but one spot will always be empty.

I use a sling bag that holds camera and a total of three lenses. I use a strap on the camera but it occurs to me that this would still work without the camera strap. The nice thing about the sling bag is that you can rotate it around so it hangs horizontally in front of you. Then when opened you have a shelf to rest the camera on when changing lenses. This is how I do it and it works fine for me using my three lens kit of: FA 20-35, DFA 24-70, DA*60-250
02-18-2018, 01:06 PM - 1 Like   #3
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I use the same OpTech caps and swap some of the time without a neck strap. I do it this way mainly with very small primes. I also have allowed the body to dangle from my wrist (I use a safety strap type wrist strap, not one that acts as a grip aid. Mostly I just work out of a bag however.
02-18-2018, 01:17 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
Personally I would never work without a strap, though I use a sling, not neck.

However, that doesn't help you. My suggestion would be a lens swap waist bag of some type. With a good wrist strap you should be able to swap lenses with one hand provided you have an empty bag to put the lens in. So if you are running with a two lens setup you need a waist bag that holds both of your lenses but one spot will always be empty.

I use a sling bag that holds camera and a total of three lenses. I use a strap on the camera but it occurs to me that this would still work without the camera strap. The nice thing about the sling bag is that you can rotate it around so it hangs horizontally in front of you. Then when opened you have a shelf to rest the camera on when changing lenses. This is how I do it and it works fine for me using my three lens kit of: FA 20-35, DFA 24-70, DA*60-250
QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
I use the same OpTech caps and swap some of the time without a neck strap. I do it this way mainly with very small primes. I also have allowed the body to dangle from my wrist (I use a safety strap type wrist strap, not one that acts as a grip aid. Mostly I just work out of a bag however.
I have a Cosy Speed Camslinger with a few pouches attached, in addition to that I have a lowepro sling style bag (carrying the rest of the gear such as tripods and flashes should I need them). KP is usually in the cosyspeed, K-1 in the lowepro. I think I need to see a video to see how folks are managing it, a wrist strap seems like a far easier and less intrusive way of working (not to mention packing gear away quicker into compartments).

What wrist straps are you guys using?

02-18-2018, 01:33 PM   #5
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I think this is my model:

Pacsafe Carrysafe 25 Anti-theft Camera Wrist Strap, Neutral Gray 15252103

It's small and light and reinforced with steel wires. It is intended as anti-theft which is what I originally used it for with a Panasonic LX-7 overseas. Now I use it as comfortable. I don't really enjoy neck straps.
02-18-2018, 01:39 PM - 1 Like   #6
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I always set my camera bag down on the ground or a flat surface, kneel or crouch down to swap lenses. With smaller lenses I can even do it standing using a jacket pocket for the old and new lenses.

If I knew i was going to be in a situation where this would not be possible I would stick to a zoom lens fro the duration
02-18-2018, 02:54 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by BruceBanner Quote
Basically I'm wondering how people lens swap in the field, specifically those doing it with cameras that are not using a neck strap.
I never swap lenses with the strap around my neck and never have. Granted, I usually have a bag or appropriate deep pocket to assist in the process, although I have been known to lay a lens or two on the ground in a pinch.

P.S. I only use a wrist strap when shooting street with my rangefinder film cameras. Often enough, with the other cameras, I am hiking and like to have both hands free.


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02-18-2018, 03:54 PM   #8
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I also use a wrist strap and the way I usually change lenses is to find a nice tree stump (One free of ants!!) and lay out camera and lens on top.
The alternative, when accompanied by my wife, is to ask for help; works fine!

02-18-2018, 04:21 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by rod_grant Quote
The alternative, when accompanied by my wife, is to ask for help; works fine!
The older I get, the appealing the idea of an amiable assistant becomes.


Steve
02-18-2018, 04:37 PM   #10
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With smaller lenses I swap the same way I have done with my prior Canon gear, K-5 II, KS-2 and now my KP. I use a wrist strap, but that does not effect the sens swap. Basically I hold the camera in my right hand and the lens I want to swap in my left hand holding it between my thumb and first two fingers. The lens cap is already removed and stored temporary in my pocket. Holding the new lens between my thumb & first two fingers I then depress the lens release button and use my left palm & last two fingers to remove the attached lens then turn my left wrist to insert the new lens into place. It all takes just a moment, camera body is pointed down during the whole time. Once the lens is attached I drop the camera body (attached with wrist strap) and put the end cap back on the lens I just removed. When holding the new lens just make sure the alignment mark is in the right orientation for attaching the lens.
This works for the smaller lens up to my 18-135 lens. My next larger lens is the 70-200 and for that this method will not work for me, I can only one lens in my hand at a time.
02-18-2018, 04:46 PM   #11
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Wingincamera, how often have you dropped a lens?
Perhaps yu have bigger and more flexible hands than me, but if I tried that I would have broken half my lenses by now!
02-19-2018, 06:31 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by BruceBanner Quote
Basically I'm wondering how people lens swap in the field, specifically those doing it with cameras that are not using a neck strap. Can you successfully lens swap easily with a K-1 and a wrist strap? It strikes me as something quite awkward to manage...?
Peak Design Capture Clip. With a messenger bag if possible, with a MindShift Gear rotation360 Horizon otherwise. The Capture Clip is the nicest photo accessory I've ever come across.
02-19-2018, 07:36 AM   #13
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I personally use a Lowepro Lens Exchange case when I know I'll be swapping out heavy lenses.
Lowepro S-F Lens Exchange Case 200 AW for 70-200mm Lens LP36260
They're certainly not "inconspicuous" but makes the process a whole lot more secure. Drop the old lens in one of the two interior fold-out pouches and mount the stored lens. Zip and close one-handed with a zip-handle rather than a typical small zipper that may take two hands. .

Last edited by gatorguy; 02-19-2018 at 07:42 AM.
02-19-2018, 08:54 AM   #14
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Most of the time I use my doing bag pulled around front as a lens exchange platform... But there are times when I don't have a bag and I have a lens in a coat pocket and do it with just the strap and my hands.
02-19-2018, 12:06 PM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by UncleVanya Quote
Most of the time I use my doing bag pulled around front as a lens exchange platform... But there are times when I don't have a bag and I have a lens in a coat pocket and do it with just the strap and my hands.
This seems to be a common theme here, using a bag or some other apparatus (wrist strap) to assist with the swap.

I'm specifically looking for solutions in situations where;

a) I don't have a bag to assist with resting a lens or camera body during the swap (even if I could I might find a neck strap is the lesser of two evils and preferable to swinging my particular bags around)

b) I don't have access to the ground to assist (lmao... i mean of course I do, I'm meaning I don't want to lay a lens or camera body onto the dirt/sand/slippy rock etc)

c) Can I lens swap without a neck strap or wrist strap?

I've had a little practice at home, even with small primes I cannot fathom a way at all to swap a lens without a wrist strap or neck strap, it just can't happen! Swinging a bag around becomes a little like 'finding a wall', it leaves me a little uneasy as I think something could go wrong, and a lens or camera body fall during the process.


QuoteOriginally posted by bdery Quote
Peak Design Capture Clip. With a messenger bag if possible, with a MindShift Gear rotation360 Horizon otherwise. The Capture Clip is the nicest photo accessory I've ever come across.
Before I purchased the Cosyspeed Camslinger I did think about Peak Design Clip, in the end I passed due to the following reasons;

1) The solution doesn't provide waterproofing, I felt the Camslinger provided a similar interface with the additional benefit of having protection from both bumps and splashes (I do shoot near waterfalls as well).
2) The base plate stops me from using an L Plate or arcaswiss plate therefore I would likely be toggling the Peak Design clip on and off a fair bit thereby defeating it's purpose significantly.

Otherwise it's not a bad idea, tho I've not actually seen it assist with a lens swap but using my imagination can see how it could help.

I applaud this guy below, he's at least trying to show how this can be successfully achieved without strapping or bag assistance of any kind;


I shall attempt to try and emulate this procedure, with our Pentax primes we should be thankful as they do appear to be smaller than other brands primes.

What I have discovered at home is... although I don't have a proper wrist strap, I managed to fashion a similar design with a thin neck strap (to the point that I could tighten it around my wrist and the camera could dangle safely), but in reality doing this feels rubbish, the camera body swings around with it's sensor pointing in all directions and its more awkward than a neck strap where the camera body can be braced in one direction during the swap. I really feel a 'wrist strap' is out in terms of helping in this manner, but I do wonder about those 'hand straps' that assist with the grip of the camera body. I could imagine that would assist with the lens swap quite a bit, giving that slight extra security during the swap.

I find neck straps just plain annoying;

1) When using LV mode, rotating the camera between landscape to portrait, depending upon strap length and strap anchor points, the straps can get in the way of the screen!
2) They are bulky, at least good heavy duty ones
3) When bush walking, the camera tends to just bounce off the chest, I end up holding the camera for long periods just to avoid this, I'd store the camera away in the sling backpack but the strap bulk makes the process challenging with its bulk.
4) When tripodding the neck strap can be annoying and actually promote a tipping over accident by getting caught on something when dangling down.

Currently my use for neck straps extends to purely the lens swapping process, other than that I find them a pain.

So yeh, just wondering if anyone uses a hand strap rather than a wrist strap, can swap lenses in a similar manner to the above video and finds the hand strap aids or hinders this process?

EDIT: After trying a little with the above fella's technique I am drawing these conclusions. Optech double lens caps don't work for this, you want rear caps that can just flip off easily. Larger lenses are oddly easier to work with, smaller primes leave less space for my hands to grip and the Pentax 'flash hood/name plate' section can be quite obtrusive to working around (sticks out quite a fair bit) making the swap harder.

EDIT EDIT: After watching a few more videos I can't help thinking that the solution for me is to find some kind of system like the Peak Design Clip that allows my camera body to dock onto my person during a swap. If I am at home I can lens swap easily from the comfort of using a table to assist. When out in the field I will either have a sling bag or my CosySpeed camslinger around my waist. If there was a clip that acted like the Peak Design I could easily anchor the camera to the strap of the Cosyspeed slinger or sling bag and swap lenses fairly quickly utilising the optech caps that I have. Doing this I could even forgo a handstrap as well I think (saving expense). My only concern is tripod mounting/L Plate, and how that factors in. Does such a clip like the Peak Design exist that incorporates somehow Arca Swiss design and allows also to dock with tripods?

EDIT EDIT EDIT: Ok so Peak Design Clips with arca swiss plates for release do exist. Cool. I dunno how in real practice tho how great these work, are they more fiddly, clip in and out with ease or actually significantly slow the whole process down with a good degree of frustration?

I'm also seeing some references to this concept with L Plate brackets being mentioned; https://support.peakdesign.com/hc/en-us/articles/201292143-Using-Capture-with-an-L-bracket

This is starting to look a bit ridiculous tho, adding significant bulk to the camera. To be honest I'm not overly found of L Plates, they add a lot of additional weight and bulk to a camera body and interfere with some of the nice rubber curved grips of the camera body.
Is it possible to get a tripod mount accessory that somehow can take the orientation that a L Plate in portrait mode gives (i.e still pivoting at the top of the ball pod and not having to move the ball plate 90 degrees so that it's perpendicular to the ground? Thus still allowing proper panning Portrait shots on a pod properly? This I think (if such a thing exists) would be preferable even if it meant ferrying around an additional tool piece for tripods. It would mean a small unobtrusive arca bottom plate would be attached to the camera body, no strap required of any kind, less bulk and lens swapping (hopefully) speedier and less painful than working around neck straps.

Last edited by BruceBanner; 02-19-2018 at 01:21 PM.
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