Thread: Slider Tripods for stability and flat tops

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  1. #1 Slider Tripods for stability and flat tops 
    Okay, so hopefully the hive mind can help me out here.

    I've swapped a Rhino slider set up for an Edlekrone Slider Plus Pro (image below). The slider has a lot to like, it's smooth, it's half the length of the typical 1m slider yet because it extends i get the same travel and the pro version will hold 9kg so enough for a head and the red. The motion control is smooth and simple and the app works well. There's a benefit for moving in and out shots because the length of the slider cannot be seen. Anyway, i'm happy with the sliders, enough to keep it.

    So the challenge is physics based. If i have a 6kg load 45 cm away from the mounting point there are some forces to look for

    I bought a 100mm bowl tripod and flat bowl adapter (E Image tripod and adapter). Not sure about the legs, they're fine but because of the locking mechanism of the bowl adapter (typical twist under the bowl) the bowl will *slide* unless it's inhumanly tight - it's smooth metal against metal - not rubber or anything like that. So that's not working.

    So i'm looking at tripods with a large flat top and Gitzo do a 90mm flat top (may be 100mm actually) in their systematic 5 range. The load rating on their tripods is fine but it's the 3 angle adjustments and leg adjustments which i think would be okay. I am aware of some swearing by these legs despite not mid or floor spreaders. I wondering about torsional twisting but these are supposed to be best of the best.

    Also novoflex do a quadrapod so 4 legs which means that with a slider i could have a leg under each end for stability. I'm waiting to see what the flat head size is because i'm concerned of the vertical pull on the 3/8 screw in this case. I believe the gitzo locking screen goes through the head to a hook underneath and that would be stable and i can add weight to it too.

    But it's not an uncommon need, so maybe there are better solutions out there. Maybe 100mm bowls that won't slip?

    Also low profile flat heads for use on the slider. Very few options. I have manfrotto 500AH and 502. I prefer the 500 actually but it's not really meaty enough for counterbalance weight. But all the heads i can see are really 14/15cm from base meaning centre of gravity is quite high which is never ideal on a slider. I am surprised there aren't more low profile options. Gitzo do some nice ones but the plates are too small really.

    So i do wonder what others have encountered or tried out?

    cheers!
    Paul
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  2. #2  
    Member Mark A. Jaeger's Avatar
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    Paul, I suggest you worry about the physics. I have two Gitzo series 5 tripods that have been adapted to 100mm bowls. They are good, robust tripods. When my truck is near I also use Mathews Slider stands but these are definitely heavy. 1) My first concern is that when you center mount your slider and then send a 6 or more Kg to the end of the slider you may tip the tripod. I would definitely ballast the tripod with significant weight. 2) My Gitzo/Manfrotto bowl/flat top fastens well and doesn't rotate with reasonable tightening. Be sure you have matching geometry: ball to receptacle. 3) Have you considered using 2 tripods? You can get away with lighter tripods or a combination such as your Series 5 at one end and a lighter tripod at the other end. I almost always use two tripods. I acknowledge that I am using much longer rails, a Dana Dolley, CineDrive and the Red = much heavier.
    I think you'd be much happier with the stability/rigidity of a two tripod setup even though there's more gear, etc. Good luck.
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  3. #3  
    Quote Originally Posted by Mark A. Jaeger View Post
    Paul, I suggest you worry about the physics. I have two Gitzo series 5 tripods that have been adapted to 100mm bowls. They are good, robust tripods. When my truck is near I also use Mathews Slider stands but these are definitely heavy.
    Thanks for the input. The issue with the edelkrone is it can only be centre mounted because the ends extend, that's kinda the whole party trick.

    The manufacturers are using manfrotto carbon fibre legs with a 100mm bowl and suggest that the issue i am seeing is with the particular bowl/head i am using.

    So i'm leaning towards the gitzo because i've not heard a bad thing about it, despite a 'proper' tripod looking more sturdy. I'm waiting to hear back from the quadrapod manufacturers as well.

    As for tipping the issue would be the legs under. As long as the legs are wider than the travel distance i should be okay.

    I've have an inline dolly (similar to dana) and rails and they would be on heavy duty stands and more than one - this is purely taking advantage of the size and ability of that one slider!

    thanks
    Paul
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  4. #4  
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    I'll second what Mark said above-- I actually have the Rhino slider and, when center-mounted on a Gitzo systematic tripod with the flat insert (with sandbag on hook), I get some flex issues when I get heavier than a Sony A7 with Zeiss Milvus lens, especially if I'm also trying to pan or tilt with the fluid head. (I'm very curious if maybe the Komodo will allow the "cinema camera on a light duty slider" breakthrough :-) I'll just add:

    1) one tip I got from someone else on this forum was to support the ends of the slider with monopods. Depending on how you roll, this may let you travel lighter (and cheaper) than multiple tripods. Don't know if the Edelkrone's moving rails allow this.
    2) Miller makes some lightweight heads that can be flat-mounted. Might be an improvement over the Manfrottos, but similar center of gravity.

    One other thing to keep in mind: part of the problem is actually just the narrow width of the slider. Even when they're rated to hold a lot of weight, your front-to-back (not just horizontal) balance can be an issue-- you'll find the whole thing wants to pitch forward. For a lot of stuff, I'm sure the two-tripod/tripod + monopod(s) will help. But I've wound up using the Dana Dolly if I also need to tilt/pan. MYT Slider and other wider sliders also solve these issues.
    Side note: for motion control, the Emotimo kit pairs with Dana Dolly or sliders and is pretty nice. It's not perfect, but it's easy to use, compact and supported a Red body and Ultra Primes with no problem. And since the Emotimo allows for more axes of motion, you don't need to use a fluid head at all.
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  5. #5  
    Quote Originally Posted by M Harvey View Post
    I'll second what Mark said above-- I actually have the Rhino slider and, when center-mounted on a Gitzo systematic tripod with the flat insert (with sandbag on hook), I get some flex issues when I get heavier than a Sony A7 with Zeiss Milvus lens, especially if I'm also trying to pan or tilt with the fluid head. (I'm very curious if maybe the Komodo will allow the "cinema camera on a light duty slider" breakthrough :-)
    Thanks, some great points.

    The monopod tip is good but as i mentioned, this slider (because it expands) can only be mounted at the centre. The construction is rigid enough to not flex like the Rhino.

    I do think Komodo will make life a lot easier for this kind of tool, that's for sure.

    I did look at emotino and it's an amazing solution although in the edelkrone family there is a 2 axis head as well and as it all connects via the same app it would make way more sense to go down that route.

    So out of curiosity have you also used that gitzo with the bowl adapter as well? If you swap flat for bowl is it as secure as the flat?

    cheers
    Paul
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  6. #6  
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    Quote Originally Posted by paulcurtis View Post
    So out of curiosity have you also used that gitzo with the bowl adapter as well? If you swap flat for bowl is it as secure as the flat?
    I believe the flat head-- which also makes it easy to add hang weight from the center-- is best. And if you can't add additional stands/monopods, sounds like your best bet would be to add as much weight as is practical to the legs.

    I do have the Gitzo 100mm bowl adapter, but I don't own Gitzo's own 100mm half ball levelling platform (half ball with flat top)-- I have the Manfrotto equivalent. To be honest, I don't know that I've actually tried the Rhino slider with that combination. (My purpose was mounting and leveling a 4x5 film camera.) However, I've occasionally had some slippage at extreme angles with a 100mm Sachtler head (like, trying to point the camera straight down)-- so that's the half ball base native to the Sachtler head in the Gitzo 100mm bowl. But then, similar slippage occasionally happened with Sachtler's own carbon fiber tripod (which is of course native 100mm, no bowl adapter). So while I'm sure there are better and worse combinations of materials vis a vis slippage, I do think it's just the nature of the beast, to some degree.

    The Edelkrone 2 axis head sounds great, by the way.

    I may get my set-up out and tinker a bit today, if I have time. Please definitely come back and share what you learn from your experimentation as well-- compact sliders are always SO CLOSE to being the perfect tool!
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  7. #7  
    Quote Originally Posted by M Harvey View Post
    I believe the flat head-- which also makes it easy to add hang weight from the center-- is best. And if you can't add additional stands/monopods, sounds like your best bet would be to add as much weight as is practical to the legs.!
    I've been asking various manufacturers.

    Edlekrone themselves suggest 536 legs (100mm bowl carbon fibre) with the Manfrotto half bowl, they say it works fine, the metals and finish are different.

    But those legs aren't ideal, and there are no 636 legs yet which i'm sure will come at some point. There are no threads for attaching things to the 536 and it's only a bowl, no flat version.

    Gitzo have both. I was checking that the flat head was secure enough, so with the cantilevered weight it won't pull the flat head up and out of the tripod. They assure me it won't and they say the same thing with the gitzo bowl which will work with manfrotto half bowl.

    So my preference right now is Gitzo because they are better made (even though manfrotto and gitzo are the same factory i think) they said the gitzo was a more premium version. I looked at various other brands but gitzo just kept coming up as the preference.

    So i think i will try that. But i may give the manfrotto half bowl a go in the EImage legs to see.

    The slider is great, it's close. If i can crack support then it's very usable. The slide module (motorised) and the headONE offer a low cost move and pan and all synced together. The HeadPLUS is the two axis and maybe work towards that, there's a pro version of that too.

    The only downside is that the slider doesn't really do inclines, it will handle 22 degrees but no more and certainly nothing vertical but then only the Syrp really seemed to offer that and i found it very difficult to get hold of one and it's quite a bit larger. There's something nice about a compact extending slider which is light enough to carry around anywhere.

    Cheers
    Paul
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  8. #8  
    So following up for anyone in a similar situation.

    I sent the E Image 100mm bowl legs back and bought a Gitzo 5 systematic. That so far is way more stable, feels very solid. I've used the slider on it and so far so good. I think because the legs are so light there could be some issues there but i can hang weight under the head quite easily and will experiment with that.

    So far i just have the flat top but i will get the gitzo bowl adapter and i have a manfrotto half ball already.

    Next is really trying to find the lowest profile head to keep the centre of gravity as low as possible - that's an issue with lots of sliders and it would be nice if the edelkrone was a bit wider but there you go.

    cheers
    Paul
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  9. #9  
    Senior Member Eric Santiago's Avatar
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    I have the Manfrotto 528XB and use it for mini-jib and sliders.
    I wish I had that during my first Edelkrone Slider (2013).
    I used it on a Miller Solo CFs and that was scary with a RED Scarlet.
    Sold it same year due to weight issues.
    Gotta get something solid like the 528XB if you are loading it up on a slider.
    < Someday I'll be cool enough to have something witty here >
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  10. #10  
    Quote Originally Posted by Eric Santiago View Post
    I have the Manfrotto 528XB and use it for mini-jib and sliders.
    I wish I had that during my first Edelkrone Slider (2013).
    I used it on a Miller Solo CFs and that was scary with a RED Scarlet.
    Sold it same year due to weight issues.
    Gotta get something solid like the 528XB if you are loading it up on a slider.
    I did consider that one, and it's probably a good call. I have the heavy duty lighting stand from manfrotto which i use occasionally but that's a flat head not a bowl. I may keep an eye out for this as an option though.

    However that Gitzo is very stable (one of the most stable tripods out there). I've used it successfully, although will also try and add weight underneath it as well and hopefully make it more so. Stick 10kg under it and then that can only help!

    thanks

    cheers
    Paul
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