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04-19-2021, 03:02 AM   #1
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Gritty ball head

as it says really, I have an older ball head that isnt nice to use any more - its got gritty on pan, the ball is still smooth

is that fixable or once these things get wear / damage inside they are toast?

04-19-2021, 03:47 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by LittleSkink Quote
as it says really, I have an older ball head that isnt nice to use any more - its got gritty on pan, the ball is still smooth

is that fixable or once these things get wear / damage inside they are toast?
If the design allows you, just take it apart and have a look. Both surfaces should be smooth. If they're not use some whet based sanding paper (gritt 800 or higher) on a glass plate and smoothen it by circulair movements. After done put a very thin layer of high temperature resistent grease on the surfaces and put it back together....
04-19-2021, 05:53 AM   #3
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Indeed, maybe simply disassemble it? Take pictures at each step, label screws, etc, and you should be able to put things back in place.
04-19-2021, 06:13 AM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by LittleSkink Quote
is that fixable or once these things get wear / damage inside they are toast?
Ball heads are relatively simple devices and, generally, they can be disassembled easily. You could look for examples on YouTube.

A gentle solvent such as mineral spirits can be used to flush the grit and other gunk. Mating rotational surfaces should be coated thinly with grease upon reassembly. Note that the spherical head should not be greased.

- Craig

04-19-2021, 06:38 AM   #5
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Generally, either you have wear particles in the pan mechanism, or some kind of contaminant. If it's contaminant, cleaning out and lubricating should fix the problem. If it's wear particles, the same process may or may not fix it. If you are not inclined to disassemble it, I'd blast it with WD40 a couple of times, and see if that fixes it. It often does.
04-19-2021, 08:22 AM   #6
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Use a nice damping grease for a smooth pan.
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