Are Leg Tubes Interchangeable?

Standard

dsc_0611-e1500994069275.jpgI bent a leg tube, so now I cannot retract my leg.  Does it matter what tube I replace it with?

The tubes are all different sizes since they have to fit into each other.  So one difference is the tube diameter.

The second is the interior shape.  Some tubes are smooth inside, others have ridges that tit into grooves so the tubes will not rotate.  The tube in the center of the picture is “D” shaped and will not work with the round tubes, or the leg braces and leg locks.  The tubes are different lengths depending upon whether the tripod is a 3 section or a 4 section.

And the last consideration is color.  In the older tripods the tubes can be silver or black.  In the same model they are interchangeable, so as long a you can live with the color difference, these are interchangeable.

Ultimately the best thing to do it find the exact model and purchase the tubes for it.  If you cannot determine what you have, send it to us.

Spartan Photo Center, Inc
108 Garner Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303

Include your Name, Address, Day time or cell phone number, and a description of what is damaged or needs to be repaired inside the box. Because of parts availability, or lack there of, we cannot guarantee rush service or turnaround times.

Some repairs can only be preformed by the Manfrotto repair technicians, and may have to be sent to a Manfrotto repair facility. Any items not listed on this site will be sent to Manfrotto. Repairs are usually quoted for complex or highly technical repairs.

Advertisements

How to change a head on your tripod.

Standard

055 tripod

One of the simpler modifications you can make to your Manfrotto tripod is changing the head.  While you may be able to get by with only one head, having several for different situations will make you life easier.

 

Mt tripod

All Manfrotto, and Bogen, tripods that have center columns will allow you to lock the head so it does not unscrew during use.  The older tripods had up to 3 locking screws, we call them “grub screws,” while the newer tripods may only have one.  The grub screw is used to put tension on the head when it is screwed on, so it will not come off.  Indeed, if you have ever attempted to remove a head while the grub screws were tightened you could more easily destroy the head than unscrew it.

You don’t even need to remove the grub screw. Just backing the screw out enough to allow the head to unscrew is all that it takes.   The grub screws are accessed from the bottom of the center column plate or to the side of the plate. Just make sure they are backed out completely before you reattach the head, because the stability of the head depends upon the base of the head and the center column plate both being in good contact with each other.

 

If even one grub screw protruded it will prevent the head from staying locked and it may wiggle or unscrew during use.  The picture to the right is a head that never stayed on tight.  the customer sent this in for repair when it was only a grub screw that was causing the problem.  Backing out the grub screw, re tightening the head and re tightening the grub screw was all it took.

We often find on the really old Bogen tripods that the head and the center column plate might get stuck after years of being together.  Sometimes this is the aluminum wanting to bond, often its is corrosion or foreign contaminants.  Either way if you cannot unlock it, we can.

There are different grub screws for different series and models of tripods and center columns.  The old Bogen 190, 055 use three grub screws,  the Manfrotto MT190, Mt055 and MT290 tripods use a single grub screw and the 055 and 190 leveling columns use a single grub screw that accesses from the side.  The video balls also have grubs screws, found here.

If you are having problems determining parts needed, or for a tune up or for repairs, send your name, address, daytime phone and email address along with your tripod to:

ManfrottoTripodParts.com Repairs
c/o SpartanPhotoCenter
108 Garner Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303

Once we have it, we will evaluate it and contact you. Please send us your daytime phone so we can reach you during business hours.

Lastly, if we are repairing your Manfrotto Product; we are recycling all broken parts and scrap articles. Almost nothing goes into the trash if we can help it.

Trade In Trade Up is Coming Soon……

Standard
new store front

This is the place!

This October 13th and 14th will be our 6th Annual Trade in / Trade up event. That is Friday and Saturday 10am until 3pm both days.

We will have Sales available for demonstrations.

See Demonstrations on various aspects of photography.

Make money from your old gear.

Make money from your old gear.

We will be taking cameras, lenses, tripods and certain other items for trade in.  UsedPhotoPro.com will be paying cash of used and collectable cameras, lenses and flashes.

Manfrotto will be taking old tripods on trade for their new tripods and heads.

Radio Poppers will be trading in for other remote slave units.

Get a Free pro[m]aster battery grip with any camera purchased.

If you cannot attend, but still want to trade in your tripod or head, click here.

Don’t miss out on our in store specials that we cannot advertise here.

 

 

 

Are Bogen and Manfrotto Tripods the Same?

Standard

Old055TopYes, 20 years or so ago, Bogen tripods were made by Manfrotto.

And…

No, the current Manfrotto Tripods are very different in most cases from what the Bogen equivalent used to be called.

MTtripod above

As you can see from the 3021/055 picture to the left, this Bogen tripod is bulkier and more angular.  The MT055 Manfrotto tripod to the right is the same series tripod, though it is made about 20 years later and it is much more stylish.

One of the major changes between the two brands, though they shared models like 055, 058, 190 etc; is generally the weight.  The newer Manfrotto tripods a very much lighter than the previous models. The old Bogen 055/3021 weighs about 6.6 lbs; while the new Manfrotto MT055XPRO3 only weighs 5.5 lbs.  The old Bogens usually used round tubes, where most of the new Manfrotto tripods have “D” shaped tubes that are lighter and just as strong as the older heavier ones.

Also the use of “technopolymer” is allowing the weight on bulky parts to be reduced.  You will find this on the newer heads.

By using newer technologies and better allows the size and strength remain the same while the weight is decreased overall. This technology is being diffused across all the tripods, heads, and monopods.

 

If you are having problems determining what parts you need, or for a tune up or for repairs, send your name, address, daytime phone and email address along with your tripod to:

ManfrottoTripodParts.com Repairs
c/o SpartanPhotoCenter
108 Garner Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303

Once we have it, we will evaluate it and contact you. Please send us your daytime phone so we can reach you during business hours.

Lastly, if we are repairing your Manfrotto Product; we are recycling all broken parts and scrap articles. Almost nothing goes into the trash if we can help it.

 

 

How Do I Replace The Leg on an 055?

Standard

Replacing the leg on any of the 055 series Manfrotto tripods is very easy.  The problem is finding where the damage is.

Old 055 Leg Brace Adjustment

Old 055 Leg Brace Adjustment

If the leg is damaged you can remove the whole leg just by loosening the screws on the leg brace like that shown on the left.  Or you may need to loosen and remove the tension screws on top of the main casting to remove the leg, as shown on the right.

new 055 tripod

new MT055 tripod

Once the screw is loosened the leg will pull out of the brace.  This may be difficult.  DO NOT use a metal hammer to tap on any of the parts.  The metal on metal may deform or damage the parts.  You can repair the parts of the leg as needed and reinsert into the leg brace.  Use enough pressure as required, but to not hammer into place.

Old Bogen 3021 055

Old Bogen 055 3021

If the leg brace is damaged, you will need to take apart the main casting that hold the legs to the tripod.  This will vary depending upon which 055 you are repairing.  The following shows the old 055 (also called a Bogen 3021) and the newer 055XB.

The old series 055 has three bolts and shoes to lock the legs in place and provide the tension to keep the legs at the proper adjustment angle. Shown at right.

Old055LegAdjustingThe newer 055x series has several screws that take the main casting apart, as well as, apply tension to the legs.  You will have to take all three screws out to remove the leg brace if this is the part that is broken.

new 055 tripod

new 055 tripod

The newest MT055 series the leg brace is made onto the upper leg tube, so both will have to be replaced together as one unit.  As with most of the newer tripods, you will have to remove the leg

Manfrotto Accessory Port

PRO accessory shown in red

tension screws on the top of the main casting to be able to remove the brace.  Be careful, if you have the MT055XPRO series tripod, the PRO feature will also have to be removed and reassembled. It is shown on the left, it is the part that is red.  Make sure you carefully remove all the parts and keep them in order as removed.  Reassemble in reverse order that you disassembled them.

If you are having problems, or for a tune up or for repairs, send your name, address, daytime phone and email address along with your tripod to:

ManfrottoTripodParts.com Repairs
c/o SpartanPhotoCenter
108 Garner Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303

Once we have it, we will evaluate it and contact you. Please send us your daytime phone so we can reach you during business hours.

Lastly, if we are repairing your Manfrotto Product; we are recycling all broken parts and scrap articles. Almost nothing goes into the trash if we can help it.

Why doesn’t my head lock? It moves a little bit even though everything is locked down!

Standard
separation

Loose Head

This is actually a very simple fix.  On most Manfrotto Tripods, the head is removable.  Over time or heavy use, the connection between the head and the tripod will loosen up a little bit.  It may not unscrew more than a little bit that is mostly unnoticeable, because there are locking screws that are supposed to keep the head from moving are stopping it.

undertripod

Grub Screw on Manfrotto tripod

So, raise the center column as far up as it will go.  Look under the head.  There you should see at least one or as many as three “grub screws.”  These are slotted screws that when tightened lock the head to the tripod and keep it from moving.  To repair the problem… just back out the grub screws a little bit.  Then unscrew the head and then re-tighten it.  Re-tighten the grub screws and Voila!  You are done.

Please remember: DO NOT USE finger nail polish or Loc-tite on the head or grub screws to “lock” them in place.  You may make it impossible to repair this head again in the future.

Also be aware: There are several variations of these spare parts.  Older style for number models like 055 or 190. Find it here. The newer style for lettered models like MT055 or MT190  are found here.

If you are having problems, or for a tune up or for repairs, send your name, address, daytime phone and email address along with your tripod to:

ManfrottoTripodParts.com Repairs
c/o SpartanPhotoCenter
108 Garner Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303

Once we have it, we will evaluate it and contact you. Please send us your daytime phone so we can reach you during business hours.

Lastly, if we are repairing your Manfrotto Product; we are recycling all broken parts and scrap articles. Almost nothing goes into the trash if we can help it.

Post was changed to reflect the address change

How to Find Your Tripod Model Number

Standard

If you are going to DIY (do it yourself)  a tripod repair, then you need to know how to find the model number.  Manfrotto tripods and heads have different model numbers.  So if you see a model number on the head, it identifies the head only.  Likewise, a Manfrotto 055xb is identifying the tripod only.

Tripodmodel1

The most common place for the tripod model to be on your tripod – is on the leg, next to the manufacturers nameplate.  The name is often engraved, like this Manfrotto 055XB tripod, or it is a sticker.  If it is a sticker and the sticker is worn off, you are out of luck.  With out the proper model number there is almost no way to accurately know.  Many tripods have several versions or variations, and no surprise, not all the versions are interchangeable.  Especially on brands where they have been manufacturing them for long periods of time, you cannot expect every part to match.

Tripodmodel2The manufacturer will change the product from time to time, refining the design, improving the features, often without renaming it.  So version 1 will be completely different from version 6.  And lets throw in that some tripod brands do not make their own tripods.  There are a few brands (like: Ambico, RCA,  Sony, and Sears) that have the tripods manufactured for them.  Some will use different manufacturers with completely different parts, yet use the same model numbers. So there is little or no way to find out what tripod you have.

Tripodmodel3

Another place where you can find the  model number is on the main casting.  The main casting is the part that holds the legs together at the top.  It may be a label or a sticker or even embossed on the main casting.

Be aware that in Manfrotto the 055XPROB is VERY different from the MT055XPRO3 So you cannot rely on just the model number.  It has to be the whole number and all letters included.

If you cannot find the Manfrotto model number, and it is in need of repairs, you can always send it to us.   We can repair any tripod that we have listed on our website, as long as the parts are available.  On tripods we service, with in stock parts (click here to see models we stock parts for) , we strive for a 3 day turnaround.  Costs vary, but simple repairs can be as low as $ 25 labor + parts +  shipping.

If you send us a note with your name, address, day time phone number, email we will call or email you with the estimate for repair.

Send your Manfrotto for repair to:

ManfrottoTripodParts.com Repairs
c/o SpartanPhotoCenter
108 Garner Road
Spartanburg, SC 29303

 

Blog post was changed to reflect changes in address.