I have heard that there are "add on" ball head devices available that simply screw into the existing 1/4 inch thread of whatever head is currently on your tripod. Has anyone heard of such a device?
#1. "RE: "add on" Ball Head" | In response to Reply # 0jrp Charter MemberThu 16-Aug-01 12:58 AM
Any ballhead screws on the 1/4 inch thread of a tripod, or have a 3/8" screw mount. There is no need to mount in on top of another head, unless you do have a tripod with fixed head.
I have not seen the "add-on" that you refer to, however, maybe some Nikonian has seen/use them.
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#2. "RE: "add on" Ball Head" | In response to Reply # 0BJNicholls Charter MemberThu 16-Aug-01 03:28 AM
As JRP said, most tripods offer compatibility with either 1/4" or 3/8" thread mounts or both. Any Bogen/Manfrotto or Gitzo offers thread compatibility with both. Only the cheap (usually in both senses of the word) tripods have fixed heads.
There are many ballheads that can fit either 1/4" or 3/8" and many that fit both. Manfrotto has a spring loaded insert on many heads that adapts instantly for use with either thread. You can also get inserts that will make a 3/8" socket fit a 1/4" thread bolt.
I'd suggest that you do some digging on the B&H website and you'll see dozens of possibilities. I wouldn't personally use a ballhead on a pan/tilt head, but it is certainly doable.
#3. "RE: "add on" Ball Head" | In response to Reply # 2jnscbl Basic MemberThu 16-Aug-01 10:02 AM
Speaking as a frequent user of cheap junk, let me just say this: A cheap fixed-head tripod with an inexpensive ballhead attached will vibrate like a tuning fork. Don't expect to stick a long telephoto zoom on it, racked out all the way , and take a one second exposure in a moderate breeze. HOWEVER, if you refuse to use a tripod because it's a pain in the ass, and the ballhead will get you using it, and you just want support for slower-than-handheld shutterspeeds, this setup is just as valid as a monopod, actually better. Just remember, if you are using a cheap tripod (I have tripods that cost less than a filter!) with a long zoom, remember to orient the camera on the tripod so that one leg is directly beneath and inline with the lens, to avoid tip overs. Later, when you are a wealthy perfectionist, the old tripods come in handy for off-camera flash.---scott
"I am always doing that which I cannot do, in order that I may learn how to do it."