Quick Release for 8x10

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I currently use a Gitzo 1570M head and Gitzo 1385 quick release to support my 8x10 Wisner. I am happy with the head, and get great support when I don't use the quick release. With the quick release, however, the camera shakes (rocks back-and-forth on the quick release) because the contact area between the plate and the camera is too small. I would like to go without the release, but I attaching that huge camera to the tripod head is difficult, and I am afraid I will fumble the camera someday if I don't use the release.

Here is what I want from a quick release: a large contact area, not compromise on stability when using the release, a release that won't mar my camera's finish, and a release I can screw-in by hand (no hex screw). I don't want to leave the release permanently attached, because the rubber base of another quick release marred the finish of my 4x5 Wisner. The black color absorbed into the wood.

So, what quick release should I get? Or do you have any tips on safely attaching a large camera to the head, so I can go without a quick release? I would rather not use a quick release, but I can just see my camera hitting the ground someday if I don't.

-- William Marderness (wmarderness@hotmail.com), August 11, 2001


hi william, one possibility for your gitzo 1570m would be to fix two quick release behind each other and to use the lager adpter from gitzo for that.

-- Marcus Schwier (marcusschwier@hotmail.com), August 11, 2001.

I have a Gandolfi 8x10 and I find it very easy to put in the 1570M, my procedure is to tilt the pan head all the way forward and screw the camera in. Takes me 1 minute to do, but if you are set on using a quick release, I would use a Linhof, it has a bigger surface area than the Gitzo and you can screw it to the camera with a hex key, it will never move....:-) I hope this helped.

-- Jorge Gasteazoro (jorgegm@worldnet.att.net), August 11, 2001.


Thanks, it is easy to attach the camera the way you describe (and without a quick release). I always tried the mount the camera with the head in a horizontal position.

-- William Marderness (wmarderness@hotmail.com), August 11, 2001.

machine your own quick release plate. I used 6061-T6 aluminum, which should be soft enough to prevent marring and there's no paint to speak of.

I had to make one for the Bogen 3030 pantilt head I used for my Sinar F. While the Head itself is fine for supporting the camera, the flimsy little quick release plate they give you doesn't mate to the very bizarre Sinar tripod base, which has strange prongs and other things sticking out which don't let it mate properly, let alone the fact that generic plates let your 16" long camera spin around on the plate, making the whole assembly precarious beyond belief.

Bogen uses 75-80 degree dovetails for their quick releases. I don't know why they use such a steep dovetail.

-- edward kang (ekang@cse.nd.edu), August 11, 2001.

By your criteria, I'm not sure anybody makes a quick release with that amount of surface area, or a non-hex wrench attachment. I can tell you this howerver, the Linhof Quick-Fix II, the largest of the Linhof units is the finest I have ever seen in terms of convenience and stability. First, the Linhof units are not 'cast', but machined. This gives you a level of precision that 'cast' units cannot achieve. I use my #II unit on a twin-shank pro, Linhof tripod, and I have friends who use the same unit on 8X10's. Also, the Linhof Quick-Fix II unit is incredibly tight. Fixing this unit on a tripod with the long member of the #II plate in parallel with your long axis of your view camera should give you excellent stability. Everything is a compromise in this arena. If you really want the ultimate camera fixture, use the criteria that Ansel Adams gave me, over dinner in 1957 when he was in Honolulu to photograph the annual report for Bishop National Bank. Over dinner he said to me.."The perfect tripod is a cubic yard of solid concrete with a 1/4" X #20 bold head sticking out of the top." (:-) Richard Boulware - Denver. P.S. Last time I looked, B&H had a special, very discounted price on the Linhof Quick-Fix II units.

-- Richard Boulware (boulware-den@att.net), August 11, 2001.

There are 2 versions of the Quickfix 1 and II.

The current one has a silver release lever on top of the base plate. The original version had a red lever on the bottom of the base plate.

The original one will not mount to some Linhof tripods/heads due to the position of the red lever and it would not sit flat if placed on a table.

The current version eliminates these problems.

Camera plates from the original versions do not fit the current ones without a slight modifiation.

Camera plates for the current version fit the original version as well as the current version.

-- Bob Salomon (bobsalomon@mindspring.com), August 11, 2001.

"will not mount to some Linhof tripods/heads"

Should read some non Linhof tripods/heads

-- Bob Salomon (bobsalomon@mindspring.com), August 11, 2001.

Thanks everyone, but I don't need a quick release anymore. Jorge solved my problem.

-- William Marderness (wmarderness@hotmail.com), August 11, 2001.

Mounting an 8x10 with a quick release may be a nice way to go but can be a recipe for disaster. Was photographing with a friend a bit ago & he had his 8x10 Deardorff mounted on a Bogen tripod head wiht their damnable hex type quick release heads/plates. As he was walking up a flight of stairs he readjusted the tripod on his shoulder & apparently the quick release "double safe" lever caught on his jacket somehow & we listened to the Deardorff bounce down 14 steps. They sure are loud! He has since bought a different head, one that simply screws in and holds tight and the only way it will release by accident is if the tripod screw breaks in two. And the Deardorff??? It bounced down to the bottom of the landing & was laying there as we ran up to check it. Groundglass intact, a few dents in the wood, bellows OK and the camera still in alignment & working fine. Sure did sound bad as it bounced all the way to the bottom though, especially in an empty abandoned building where the crashing reverberated throughout the building, seemingly forever.

-- Dan Smith (shooter@brigham.net), August 12, 2001.

I use a Bogen Heavy Duty 3057 head and quick release plate with my Deardorff 8x10. It works very well. The quick release plate is square and quite large, probably 3" x 3" or thereabouts. The head is heavy - around 4 pounds as I recall. Kirk also makes a very large - probably 4" x 4" - plate that will fit on an Arca style head if you like ball heads. I have the Kirk plate but no longer use it since I decided to stop using ball heads with large format cameras. I used to use it with a 4 x 5 camera and it worked particularly well because it's so large that the camera could be moved forward and backwards in the clamp to keep longer and shorter lenses centered over the tripod head.

-- Brian Ellis (bellis60@earthlink.net), August 12, 2001.

Look at the Horseman quick release. I use one for my view cameras and have no trouble with its stability. The camera plate is about 3.75 inches long by about 2.75 inches wide. It slides into the tripod mounted receiver over spring loaded buttons so that the camera cannot slide out. Then there is a lever that you move that pushes a large circular plate in the receiver "up" which locks the camera plate solidly into position. You screw the camera plates on by hand as they have a large knob in the under side for this purpose.

-- steve (s.swinehart@worldnet.att.net), August 13, 2001.


I realize your problem is solved, but for the benefit of others I would like to add to Brian's post since I too use the Bogen 3057 heavy duty head (on the 3036/3236) with our Tachihara 3X 8x10, which weighs about 12 lbs. Big and solid (nominally 4x4" 3297 plate, 4.4 lbs--whether w or w/o the plate I'm not sure), it has proved rock steady for us. The plate attaches by inserting screw into camera's threaded hole. Since both the locking lever and the safety lever have to be operated in order to release the plate, the camera is unlikely to be accidentally separated from the tripod. But of course it is difficult for one person to handle so large and heavy a system, and I consider a second pair of hands almost a necessity for both mounting (which requires retraction of the locking lever) and detaching the camera. (Another difficulty is presented by short handles on the head's controls). But if steadiness, even at the expense of weight and ease of operation, is what you're after, the 3057 is one good way to go. Good shooting, Nick.

-- Nick Jones (nfjones@pitt.edu), August 13, 2001.

I have a differ way of doing a quick release. I have a Wisner 8x10 and I have that on a Majestice head. I attatch the camera to the head at the begining of the day's shooting when the head is on the tripod. THEN after the first shoot I REMOVE the WHOLE HEAD AND CAMERA!! the head fits on to a 1 7/8 aluminum support so I just loosen the head and it all comes off. I then put the camer and head back in the vehicle in a simple wooden cradle and go to the next location. I did this to save wear and tear on the 1/4 inch thread and I also can travel with the camera ready. I have two tripods with the the 1 7/8 top post one HEAVY and one medium. So this was my solution , I just was NOT happy with doing the B.S. with those sloppy quick change thingamabobs. SO why doesn't WISNER or on of the others address this concern with a really good Quick Change. ALso the Majestic has a 4" x6" head plate so that 8x10 is really on there steady!!

-- Edward Burlew LL.B. (zeke@idirect.com), August 19, 2001.

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