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12-22-2020, 12:04 PM   #1
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Using heavy lenses with straps

Recently i was lucky enough to get the DA 150-450. A really great lens, but becoming rather heavy when walking for a hour or more ( K1-II with grip and the DFA 150-450 is in total some 3,7 kilo, 8,15 pound or so )

Best solution of course is a good strap. But which one.

I wouldn't feel very comfortable hanging all this weight just with small screw on the lens foot. The more because i have already seen broken lens foots. Hanging all the weight to the camera would of course cause to much stress to the lens mount.

The Carry Speed, ( Carry Speed CS-PRO Camera Sling System (Black) CS-PRO B&H Photo ) a good strap, but has only 1 connection point.

I was thinking of the BlackRapid Double Breathe SLIM Camera Strap ( BlackRapid Double Breathe SLIM Camera Strap, Trusted Design - BLACKRAPID ) and using 1 strap for the lens, and the other strap for the camera, spreading the load at both connection points.

I was wondering how other owners of heavy lenses are using straps and what there experiences are.


Last edited by Sakura; 12-23-2020 at 09:23 AM. Reason: Totally screwd up the weight of the lens and camera
12-22-2020, 01:01 PM   #2
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This has been discussed in the 150-450mm lens club - post your pics thread. My solution:

Post your HD PENTAX-D FA 150-450mm F4.5-5.6 ED DC AW pictures! - Page 123 - PentaxForums.com

The strap I use to clip to the eyebolt is just one taken off a defunct piece of luggage, its nice and wide with a shoulder pad. This has brassed metal clips, those seem plenty strong enough, my one concern might be if the lens was really twisting around for some reason, could possibly twist one of the clips off the eyebolt.

Also I have been using a 100m arca plate with the lens to mount on an arca fit ballhead I am using with a monopod, the foot has two screw holes so I was able to use a second unc 1/4" screw to attach this plate - provides the necessary reassurance, especially when using this BH gimbal style.

Last edited by marcusBMG; 12-22-2020 at 03:50 PM.
12-22-2020, 01:39 PM - 1 Like   #3
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I have a Black Rapid strap that attaches to the tripod foot of the lens, and it works well. However, this has been totally supplanted in my usage by the Peak Design Slide, where one end connects to the camera's left eyelet (viewed from behind) and the other to a supplied anchor bolt on the lens foot, both via (supplied) Peak Design quick release anchor links. This makes it very easy and quick to swap the right end to the camera when switching to a smaller lens.

EDIT: Another advantage of this setup is that only half the camera+lens weight is on the tripod foot, the other half being on the camera strap lug.

Last edited by Paul the Sunman; 01-02-2021 at 01:22 PM.
12-22-2020, 02:28 PM - 1 Like   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sakura Quote
Recently i was lucky enough to get the DA 150-450. A really great lens, but becoming rather heavy when walking for a hour or more ( K1-II with grip and the DFA 150-450 is in total some 7.5 kilo, 16,5 pound or so ). . .
admittedly math is not my strong point but [ without battery grip ] I get 3335 grams which is 7.3 lbs for a K 1 II plus battery/sd card and the D FA 150-450mm based on the figures found in the Owners Reviews

______________________________

Regardless

ah yes

it is pick your strap time

I like the Optech USA utility strap

Utility Strap?-Sling & Utility Strap?-Sling XL Quick Adjust - Neoprene Quick Release Camera Shoulder Strap | OP/TECH USA

which connects to the upper attachment part of the DSLR

I also have the UltraFit Hand Strap with UltraPlate

https://joby.com/us-en/ultrafit-hand-strap-with-ultraplate-jb01277-bww/

I also find that when carrying a heavy lens, it helps to vary the position of the camera and lens from time to time.

I might carry it crossbody cradled in the off elbow or balanced on the shoulder, as well as having it hang cross body with the sling using the hand grip to take some weight off of the shoulder


Last edited by aslyfox; 12-22-2020 at 02:43 PM.
12-22-2020, 02:29 PM   #5
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I made my own straps from polyester webbing I bought on the Internet. It matches the width of the strap that came with my cameras. I just make it longer than the original to a custom size, then re=thread it through the pieces that came with the original strap and through the camera fixtures themselves. I heat the fraying on the ends of the strap slightly to melt it down (in a safe area), then cool prior to threading the strap.

I just thought I would mention this in case you did not need a more specialized type of strap.

Last edited by C_Jones; 12-22-2020 at 02:38 PM.
12-22-2020, 02:30 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sakura Quote
Recently i was lucky enough to get the DA 150-450. A really great lens, but becoming rather heavy when walking for a hour or more ( K1-II with grip and the DFA 150-450 is in total some 7.5 kilo, 16,5 pound or so )

Best solution of course is a good strap. But which one.

I wouldn't feel very comfortable hanging all this weight just with small screw on the lens foot. The more because i have already seen broken lens foots. Hanging all the weight to the camera would of course cause to much stress to the lens mount.

The Carry Speed, ( Carry Speed CS-PRO Camera Sling System (Black) CS-PRO B&H Photo ) a good strap, but has only 1 connection point.

I was thinking of the BlackRapid Double Breathe SLIM Camera Strap ( BlackRapid Double Breathe SLIM Camera Strap, Trusted Design - BLACKRAPID ) and using 1 strap for the lens, and the other strap for the camera, spreading the load at both connection points.

I was wondering how other owners of heavy lenses are using straps and what there experiences are.
G'Day,

I have the K-1 with grip and 150-450. I typically use the long lens with a monopod for motorcycle racing (road race & MX) and surfing. It's been a while since I've been out capturing sports but for surfing it's pretty straight forward with the monopod fitted and I carry that set up via the monopod so just the single mounting point. I'm not jumping around putting shock load on the attachment and have not felt a need to be concerned that the lens foot or the screw attachment would fail. I understand however if you feel differently hence your post. I do check that the foot is properly secured each time I use it too.

With motorcycle road racing it's pretty much just the 150-450 in use due to the greater distance to the track. With MX though I also have the 70-200 for those areas of track that I can get closer into. When using two lenses I take the 150-450 case as a lens holder so which ever one is not on the camera it is available in the case for a quick swap. I use a different monopod, one with a foot and again I tend to carry the camera/lens via the fitted monopod.

I bought a strap from Black Rapid, an earlier version of this one: BlackRapid Delta Camera Sling - BLACK - BLACKRAPID Given the opportunity to do over I'd have gone with this one: BlackRapid Sport Breathe Original Camera Sling Design - BLACKRAPID

The reason for this is the secondary strap should make for a more comfortable fit and keep the shoulder strap in location better than the one I have. The double unit you're proposing might work but straps can get in the way and the design of that unit means you'd be carrying across your body. If that suits you it might be a viable solution. It might also provide a more balanced load across the body unlike the sling I have, hence my preference for a different style strap.

I haven't seen the engineering specs for the lens feet you've seen broken or what caused them to break. Or indeed their age. If you know that then you can determine how relevant that aspect is to your decision in finding a solution. Same goes for the screws however I reckon an email to Black Rapid might get you a ballpark indication of the load rating of their design. If it can take a load up to 10kg I don't think the screw is going to be a likely failure point.

Whichever way you go I'd like to suggest if you continue to have concerns about a single attachment point failure that you see if you can find some footage of how the pros work around MotoGP tracks. At local race venues here I've seen blokes double strapped with a camera/70-200 on one shoulder and camera/600 f4 on the other. The are pretty rough on their kit including when traveling around on a scooter to move location. I've not seen a secondary attachment point with them but nor could I comment on whether they've had failures as that could be the case too.

I don't necessarily endorse that approach but an alternative for confidence in using a strap is looking at tool restraint options like this: GRIPPS Tool Tethers & Lanyards for Working at Height There's a lot of options out there and they may be simpler than looking at the double strap you've considered. A velcro loop over the lens or tethering to the camera means you only need a single strap and the tethers are lighter and could be less cumbersome in use.

Anyhoo, I hope you find a solution to go with soon so you can get out there more with an excellent camera /lens combo.

All the best for Christmas and the New Year mate.

Tas
12-22-2020, 03:26 PM - 13 Likes   #7
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May I suggest that after you find the right strap, you visit your local tool store for small tool holster. I wear a tool holster on my belt and then slip the tripod foot of my Sigma 150-500mm into it. That transfers the weight from my shoulder to my waist. The lens' tripod foot just slides in and out so the camera is still "at the ready." It works great with either a sling strap or an extended shoulder strap. See the photos below.


Tool Holster



Holster on my belt – Holding the Sigma

12-22-2020, 04:57 PM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by AggieDad Quote
May I suggest that after you find the right strap, you visit your local tool store for small tool holster. I wear a tool holster on my belt and then slip the tripod foot of my Sigma 150-500mm into it. That transfers the weight from my shoulder to my waist. The lens' tripod foot just slides in and out so the camera is still "at the ready." It works great with either a sling strap or an extended shoulder strap. See the photos below.


Tool Holster



Holster on my belt – Holding the Sigma


That's a good idea!.
12-22-2020, 05:19 PM   #9
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I'm comming up to 5 years of 150-450 ownership.... use it as my main lens (80% of what I do)..... no drops or knocks... lots of bush walkin etc. I treat a big lens/camera much the same as my body when on a ladder..... ie always 2 points of failure required before anything hits the ground.

For me this means two fixing points for my 150-450 and camera combination. So.... I use a sling strap to the lens foot for most weight support..... and I place my hand through a wrist strap that just sits loosly on my wrist.... as a plan b.... generally when walking my right hand is through the wrist strap and I tend to rest my hand on the lens body.... all quite natural....hand sort dampens bounce of the lens etc.
12-22-2020, 06:10 PM   #10
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I do not have the 150-450, my biggest lens is only the DA*300, which I have been carrying with a black rapid sling on the tripod foot for several years/. The Black Rapid slings are very good and as long as you screw them on tight and compress the rubber washer they should never come loose, unless eventually that rubber get hard and needs replaced. But I have seen as lot of people looking for the 150-450 tripod feet, but I don't know if they broke them or lost them. It seems that they would be hard to break, but if that is a concern just use a sling and a tether for back up. I like Don's idea of the small holster too.
12-22-2020, 08:08 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by AggieDad Quote
May I suggest that after you find the right strap, you visit your local tool store for small tool holster. I wear a tool holster on my belt and then slip the tripod foot of my Sigma 150-500mm into it. That transfers the weight from my shoulder to my waist. The lens' tripod foot just slides in and out so the camera is still "at the ready." It works great with either a sling strap or an extended shoulder strap. See the photos below.


Tool Holster



Holster on my belt – Holding the Sigma
That is a very good and creative idea.
12-22-2020, 10:15 PM   #12
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I didn't know about that strap. It looks perfect for my Sigma 60-600 which has a tripod collar with a pair of attachment points for a strap.
QuoteOriginally posted by aslyfox Quote
ah yes

it is pick your strap time

I like the Optech USA utility strap

Utility Strap?-Sling & Utility Strap?-Sling XL Quick Adjust - Neoprene Quick Release Camera Shoulder Strap | OP/TECH USA

which connects to the upper attachment part of the DSLR
12-22-2020, 10:35 PM - 2 Likes   #13
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I also use the Peak Design Slide, in exactly the way Paul the Sunman uses his. In Antarctica though, shooting from the bow of a ship in sometimes inclement weather, I used a Peak Design Capture Clip on each arm strap of my backpack, with a separate tether for each camera in case I did something stupid.

This photo does not show it perfectly, but it's the only one I have of the setup and I can't resist an opportunity to pimp my poster shot for Pentax weather sealing one more time


Last edited by Sandy Hancock; 12-22-2020 at 10:59 PM.
12-23-2020, 05:16 AM   #14
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Perhaps I can offer a little advise. I don’t own the 150-450 but I do regularly walk/ hike for 1-2 hours with a DA560 attached to a K1 over my shoulder.

I use optech strap system with a wide padded strap on the lens strap hooks. I use an extra long strap arrangement, and have the strap around my neck and shoulder, crossing the body. So far I have hiked like this for up to 10km and more than 3 hours without issue. Some times carrying a back pack with my K5 , sigma 70-200/2.8 the 2x Tc and several other lenses as well.

I know everyone is different,
But if you can put the load across your torso, 3.5 kilos shouldn’t be an issue.

---------- Post added 12-23-20 at 07:19 AM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by AggieDad Quote
May I suggest that after you find the right strap, you visit your local tool store for small tool holster. I wear a tool holster on my belt and then slip the tripod foot of my Sigma 150-500mm into it. That transfers the weight from my shoulder to my waist. The lens' tripod foot just slides in and out so the camera is still "at the ready." It works great with either a sling strap or an extended shoulder strap. See the photos below.


Tool Holster



Holster on my belt – Holding the Sigma
interesting concept, but I can’t imagine my DA560 like that. The front element would be too close to the ground
12-23-2020, 09:42 AM   #15
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Lot of great ideas here so far, thank you all.

My concerns started when i received my first 150-450 lens from Ricoh. It came with a broken lens foot. The foot itself is cast aluminum. And that is by default rather brittle.

Of course i could return the broken lens and did get a replacement.
But it really dented my trust in the lens foot, especially when hanging the lens and camera on it.

You can see at the pictures of the broken lens foot that it is just a small flange that hold the lens foot in place and it really is designed to stand on it, and not hanging on it.
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Last edited by Sakura; 12-23-2020 at 10:00 AM. Reason: typo
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