I got this baby at Christmas from Henry’s. The photo is from their site so I didn’t have to take one myself.
Ever since I started with photography, I’ve been using a Soligor pan head tripod that I got from Black’s, way back in 2008. I admit, it was a ‘cheapy’ but I still have it and it still is functional – although the plastic pieces are showing wear in the form of cracks and twists.
Now I have been reading a lot of folks preaching about the importance of a good ball head over the past several years and I kept thinking, “Yeah, sure. I can’t justify getting a new tripod when I have one here that works fine just because it seems cool”. For the life of me, I could not think of any reason to get a new tripod as long as mine was working.
Well, it happened. Just before Christmas, I misplaced the plate for the old tripod. You know – part that screws into the bottom of ol’ Betsy (my camera) so I can snap it onto the tripod. I looked everywhere. I looked in the basement. I looked in the car – even took some junk out of the trunk to look. I rummaged through where I keep my camera gear (most people call this their living room). I just couldn’t find the darn thing! “That’s it! It’s lost!”, I told myself. Now I have to get a new one.
So, I looked online at Henry’s. They had a special on a funky looking orange tripod going for $129 CAD. I did my research by looking up reviews for it. There were only a few that I could find but they were positive. So, I made a request for this to ‘you-know-who’. My kids know that I was a good boy last year and it was on sale. After all, it makes Santa’s job a bit easier. Well, doesn’t it?
I excitedly unwrapped my tripod on Christmas Day and proceeded to become familiar with it. It came bundled in a nice little soft case which includes a shoulder strap for carrying. Inside the side pocket of this case, there are instructions and.. wait for it… tools! These consist of two keys and a dual sized wrench (3/8″ and 1/4″). I’m thinking “Whoa! What did I get myself into?”. It turns out that the wrench is used for switching the head from the tripod to the monopod leg. More on that later. The instructions say that I need to use one of the keys to tighten a screw to secure the head before using. And, being the ‘yeah-yeah’ type of guy that I often tend to be, I ignored this little tidbit of information and proceeded to play.
More in Part 2.