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02-03-2018, 10:23 PM - 2 Likes   #1
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Beware the neck strap!

Just a word of warning to you neckstrap users out there. Today I got off the ferry from Auckland NZ to Great Barrier Island, my K-3II around my neck rather than over my shoulder as I was climbing down, carrying as I was, my rucksack and travel case. Now, my cameraís neckstrap was looped and threaded through the eyelets outside-to-inside in the way that is supposed to be more resistant to accidentally coming undone.

Yes, you guessed it; it came undone and I had the unpleasant sight of seeing K-3II plus attached 20-40 in its OpTech neoprene cover dropping onto the ground and rolling to a halt. Horrified, I quickly saw that one side of the strap had come loose, and actually that the other side was getting there also. I dreaded to see what I might see when I undid the coverís snaps.

Astonishingly, when I took the cover off, the camera and lens were unmarked, the mounts fine and it all still works faultlessly. So bravo to the OpTech for its protection. Also, good job to Ricoh Pentax for the K-3IIís robustness, but boo hiss for the strapís inability to stay fastened properly. I shall replace the Pentax strap at the earliest opportunity.

02-03-2018, 10:39 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by microlight Quote
Astonishingly, when I took the cover off, the camera and lens were unmarked, the mounts fine and it all still works faultlessly
This is great news.
02-03-2018, 10:44 PM   #3
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I've never had one move even a mm, on K5, K3, or K1. When threaded as in the manuals they seem extremely firm to me.

I'm very pleased to hear no damage was done.
02-03-2018, 10:59 PM   #4
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Very pleased to here the camera and lens came out so well!

While I have used neck straps for many years and never had one loosen at all (that I can remember), I don't normally use them anymore.
A risk with neck straps is that if you are moving the camera around without the strap over your neck (e.g. moving the camera or taking it off etc), there is a chance it might get hooked on something (and wrench the camera out of your hands). Over the years there have been so many postings on this site where someone has caught the strap on something and dropped the camera (or something else has caught on the strap and pulled the camera off the table etc). Its happened to me (fortunately without damage). So either you have to be fanatical about keeping you camera in the bag OR the strap over your neck at all times (no exceptions) or look for another solution. Personally I use a wrist strap and happy with it so far!

02-04-2018, 12:25 AM   #5
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I'm glad your strap failure resulted in no harm. I have never had one loosen noticeably.

There are no perfect solutions. For what it's worth, I gave up on neck straps a while ago, but my newish K-1 Silver came with such a pretty leather strap that I still use it. Fortunately it is super long, so it's perfect as a shoulder sling. My other bodies (even my Q7) travel with either Peak Design or Black Rapid slings.
02-04-2018, 03:04 AM   #6
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I, too, am glad that your equipment suffered no damage

on rare occasions over the years, I too have had failures with the provided strap system on cameras and binoculars

now I use the Optech USA Uni-Loop Connector system on my cameras

Uni Loop - System Connector | OP/TECH USA

as part of the Utility Strapô - Sling and Utility Strapô - Sling XL Quick Adjust

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

it could fail, anything can, but I think any failure is extremely unlikely

they do sell an accessory to further secure the system - Secure-Its

Secure-Its - System Connectors | OP/TECH USA
02-04-2018, 07:18 AM   #7
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Thanks for your timely post!
Checked my own as a result and found one end about to release!

Maybe saved me some damage.

02-04-2018, 08:19 AM   #8
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I use a Black Rapid strap on rare occasions (when I'm carrying two bodies) but never, ever, a neck strap. I think they're a hazard to me and my gear.
02-04-2018, 08:26 AM - 1 Like   #9
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I buy shoulder cases big enough to put the camera inside with the lens hood attached and alway keep the zipper closed enough to stop the camera from falling out. Where I go you need to protect the camera while you are walking. A camera supported only by a neck strap is a disaster waiting to happen.

When I taught, the rule was strap around your neck, camera in your hand. I'd take a camera away from a student in the middle of a shoot if he was caught with a swinging camera around his neck.
02-04-2018, 09:24 AM   #10
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
When I taught, the rule was strap around your neck, camera in your hand.
Except as noted, my rule is, "Camera in hand or in the bag."
02-06-2018, 04:41 PM   #11
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I like neck straps and rely on them. Often that means hiking a fair distance with two cameras slung around my neck or over a shoulder for quick availability. As a result, I wear straps out fairly often.

Before I realized how fast straps wear, and how easily they slip loose, I had a neck strap unexpectedly come undone twice, despite proper threading. Both times it happened while I was standing still at a reception (I cover a lot of art events). Once I caught the camera before it hit ground; the other time, it bounced off the floor but was unharmed. I also had a strap simply break at the attachment point. Again, caught the camera.

Now all my straps are also secured with a wrap of gaffer tape. Nothing has slipped in the past three or so years I've been doing this. Taping also keeps those annoying strap ends from poking you in the eye while photographing.

The main thing is to inspect straps fairly regularly. It's astonishing how quickly woven straps can deteriorate in the loop that attaches to the camera when you use them a lot.
02-06-2018, 04:53 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by normhead Quote
I buy shoulder cases big enough to put the camera inside with the lens hood attached and alway keep the zipper closed enough to stop the camera from falling out. Where I go you need to protect the camera while you are walking. A camera supported only by a neck strap is a disaster waiting to happen.

When I taught, the rule was strap around your neck, camera in your hand. I'd take a camera away from a student in the middle of a shoot if he was caught with a swinging camera around his neck.
That’s the way I was taught. Same penalt too.
02-06-2018, 05:41 PM   #13
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I carry my cameras by the neck strap around my neck. I've never had a problem with my Pentax straps, but I do check them regularly. I did have a problem with my Canon strap...and my Canon camera hit the ground. Fortunately no damage, but I immediately replaced my Canon strap...which never impressed me...with a strong after market strap. It has been fine.

When I carry my cameras, using the neck strap around my neck, I also always cradle the camera body/lens in my hand. As I've got older, I don't carry more than one body anymore..too much weight for me.

I also don't wrap my hand around the neck strap and just carry it with my hand, as over the last while my hand grip is not what it used to be and I'm concerned about losing my grip and then losing my camera. I used to carry my cameras that way every so often, but not anymore. I find as physical changes happen... be ready to adapt.
02-06-2018, 06:13 PM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by lesmore49 Quote
. . . be ready to adapt.
that is always a good idea

one solution does not always meet all situations

I was always taught to use a strap by my dad -

" I paid $ for that thing, use it or put the camera down "

I never pick up a camera which has a strap without using the strap
02-06-2018, 06:17 PM   #15
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In 40 years I’ve never had a Pentax neckstrap even close to coming loose. They’re actually a challenge to remove when I want to. But they have gotten narrower and less / non padded over the years.

My son gave me a Peak Design Slide for Christmas for the K-1 / D FA24~70, so I now carry cross body against my right hip. It makes a huge difference in extended comfort on a long outing with a 43 in a coat or fleece jacket pocket, and AFAICT is very secure. The looped connectors have a colored warning indicator when they start to wear.

I still use a legacy 2” red & white Pentax heavy cotton canvas strap on the KP that has the annoying habit of twisting the attachment webbing. Maybe that’s how they loosen.
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