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Thread: Travelling with a tripod

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    Member Kel1973's Avatar
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    Travelling with a tripod

    Hi All,

    I am off to Vietnam and Singapore in August and am trying to decide to tripod or not to tripod. I am flying air asia so have some lugges restrictions so am interested to hear what others have done.

    My tripod is not the heaviest but it's no lightweight either.

    Kel

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    Ausphotography Site Sponsor/Advertiser OzzieTraveller's Avatar
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    G'day Kel

    I have a small "traveller's tripod" from Manfrotto [and others make 'em as well]
    It is also known as a Table-Top tripod

    It's the size of a banana, has a ball & socket head, its 3 legs disappear up into the body when not in use and it's magic !!!

    I slip it into a pocket to take almost anywhere, attach it to the camera, sit it on a table, car bonnet, brick wall &/or attach camera, use ball swivel head to put camera at 90degrees, then hold tripod tight onto a brick wall so that camera is now horizontal and take pix that way

    Works like a dream...
    Regards, Phil
    Of all the stuff in a busy photographers kitbag, the ability to see photographically is the most important
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    I got my wife to make me a small bean bag about 15cm x 15cm. You can place this on any uneven surfaces and it will mould around it to keep your camera flat. Just an idea has worked for me in the past.


    I liked this about your photo.......To improve on it you could........Well done and keep posting



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    Ausphotography Regular Brian500au's Avatar
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    Hi Kel, in the past if i have travelled to a place knowing I needed a tripod (eg Hong Kong harbour), then I would pack one. Now I travel with a light mono pod which can suffice for 95% of what i need to do. A small light weight monopod takes up very little room, easy to carry and doesn't add much to the overall weight of your luggage.

    Now I never travel without it.
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    Cool I might check out the mono pods as I am sure I will want some city night shots somewhere along the way.

    Thanks all for the advice.

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    My friend's D300s + Sigma 150 Macro dropped dead in the river due to a light-weight tripod.

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    Member ryshhh's Avatar
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    Ouch! Can you use monopods for the longer exposures? Or is it really for keeping it a bit steadier? Picking up a Manfrotto 190XPROB + 804RC2 for my travels next week. Hope it holds up my 7D.

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    I've travelled to south-east Asia before with my tripod.
    It's 2.3kg - so about medium weight and 60cm long and fits nicely into my checked-in luggage (restriction was 20kg).

    I was glad I had it for some shots, but reflecting on the trip, I did not use it that much. But then again it was a holiday and not a photography trip.

    If you know you will shoot a considerable amount of images that will need a tripod. I think the inconvieniance of the extra bulk and weight will pay off. Otherwise you may have to resort to high-iso hand held shots.

    I'd say take it if you can do without some clothes/shoes due to Air Asia's restrictions. (you're in a location that you probably won't get to too often - so best come prepared)

    Have fun.
    Canon 5D | BG-E4 battery grip | 17-40mm f/4L zoom | 50mm f/1.4 prime | 24-70mm f/2.8L zoom | 300mm f/4L IS prime | 1.4x III teleconverter| 580EX II flash | Velbon Sherpa 600n tripod | Lowepro Nova 3AW bag | Various Singh-Ray Filters

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    I never travel o/s with my main tripod, its just too bulky and heavy to lug around everywhere.

    However, on my next trip i've decided to take a small lightweight one for the odd night or landscape use. Trust me, there is no such thing as a light and steady tripod !!
    Its taken me a while to find a suitable travel tripod, esp one that is non bulky and light whilst being tall enough (at least 1 metre in height)....but i have a likely candidate.
    Canon User

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    Ausphotography Regular Brian500au's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ryshhh View Post
    Ouch! Can you use monopods for the longer exposures? Or is it really for keeping it a bit steadier? Picking up a Manfrotto 190XPROB + 804RC2 for my travels next week. Hope it holds up my 7D.
    I have used the monopod successfully by bracing against a ledge. The monopod is a compromise between not having any support and a tripod. If I know I need a tripod on my travels then I take a Manfrotto 190 carbon with me. It is light and tucks away fairly small.

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    My Travel thoughts

    Bean bag, home made or from the chemist or 2 peso shop (not using the peso yet, but give the government time)

    These are great, stable, work in many environments and protects the camera, and easy to throw in the coat pocket or camera bag. I always have one with me in the bag

    Monopod Not good for long exposure but other than that very useful, and the main reason they are great is that there are many public places where they won't let you set up a tripod, but wont bother you if you are using a mono-pod. Waterfronts, museums and a surprising number of places really.

    Tripod best of both of the above but the restrictions on using them and weight

    When I have travelled OS with one, I pack it in the checked-in luggage inside a suitcase, no damage no worries. I have carried them in hand luggage domestically and never been called on them, but I have heard stories that they have been considered a security risk in some places and then sent back to be checked in seperately and then get damaged.

    Hope that helps

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    I just got back from 2 weeks overseas in Bali and East Java for photo work - bought a cheap tripod along and carry on luggage only - the tripod was in its own sipped up bag with a sling so i slung it over my arms - got through Qantas, virgin blue, Air Asia and Tiger fine

    even though I only used it sparingly, it was invaluable as there was no way I could have done 20 second exposures without it.

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    Interesting thread. I'm in the same predicament actually. i'm heading off at the end of the year to Canada, Egypt and all around Europe, it'll but for a couple of months.
    I'm in two minds if i should take a tripod at all. I already have a light gitzo with ball head that it comes in at about 1.7kg but it might be a touch too heavy for the amount of time i'll be gone for.
    I took it to thailand and it was perfect for those night shots with my wide angle lenses, but we didn't do a lot of travel and I didn't have to pack a lot of cold weather stuff like this trip
    So i'm thinking of getting a gorillapod SLR-Zoom. it only comes in at 241g and looks fairly stable.
    might be worth looking into for you.
    Canon 5D MKII, 17-40mm f/4L, 24-105mm f/4L, 17mm TS-E f/4L, 24mm f/1.4L II, 50mm f/1.2L, 85mm f/1.2L
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    Member ryshhh's Avatar
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    +1 for the Gorillapd SLR Zoom.

    Took a couple of simple night shots with the Canon 7D + Grip + 10-22mm. Help up nicely. THe only problem for me was that it too a while to steady and setup up the correct angle. I would suggest putting a ballhead on it too.

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    thanks all seems i have some thinking and testing to do. I used a bean bag in Europe but found lots of bridges with funny ledges and a lack of flat surfaces for some shots. The gorilla pod would be hard for me as I am so short and I would be scared it would fall.

    Time to test!

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    After spending 6 weeks in South America my biggest regret is not taking a tripod. Next time I'm going to go looking for a cheap (ie. <$100) tripod that will pack away in both checkin luggage and a day pack. It doesn't have to be a big name brand, just something that will be stable in nothing stronger than a breeze and allow shutter speeds of up to 10-20 seconds. Last time I was in the local second hand store they seemed to have a bunch meeting this criteria so I reckon that'll be my first port of call!
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    Member my serendipity's Avatar
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    +2 for the Gorillapod SLR Zoom but you do really need to put a good ball head on it. And as much as I am happy with the Gorillapod I would never leave it hanging from anything. Despite what they say I would hate for my $1800 and >$1000 camera/lens to hit the deck. So as others have said I used available ledges, fences and walls for support (all situations in which a bean bag would also be useful). Just my 2c worth.

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    Ausphotography Regular gcflora's Avatar
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    The first time I went to PNG I didn't take my tripod. Since then my tripod goes everywhere with me and I just pack it into my checked luggage
    Craig

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    Thought I'd chuck in what sounded like a handy tip that I saw a while back in some magazine. This would'nt do the job as a tripod but may give similar stability of a monopod if your caught out with nothing and needed a bit of extra stability. It was piece of string that a bloke had conected to the bottom of the camera body with a loop at the bottom to put your foot through to hold it and just pull up. It could be conected with a bolt of the right thread size with a hole drilled through the head or onto a quick release plate if you had one with you. I think it could be hard on the arms after a while because you'd have to keep upward pressure on it rather than a mono taking the weight of the gear. But anyway it could be a good backup.
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    I always take my tripod overseas. The tripod goes in my main luggage, I have a 190Xprob with a three way head. Its not the lightest but I really like having the tripod particularly for landscapes. I figured the shots I take I want to be the best I can do since there is no guarantee that I will be back to retake the picture.

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