A Site for Photographers by Photographers

Community > Forums > Accessories - Filters, Bags, Tripods > Which Screw to Lock a Ball...

Which Screw to Lock a Ball Head ?

Johnny Kleso , Sep 08, 2011; 11:51 p.m.

Do I use the Large or Small Screw to Lock Down the Head?
What is the most common used for lock?
I am guessing the small is the lock and they large the drag?


    1   |   2     Next    Last

Bob Sunley , Sep 09, 2011; 02:58 a.m.

Drag set is usually a small knob and lock the large one, but.................. Which brand and model?

Johnny Kleso , Sep 09, 2011; 05:05 a.m.

Cheapo Fancier FT6665H ballhead
54mm (2 1/8") ball
It was $59 and for the money I am very happy..
I read a few reviews of it and one guy had all kinds of issues but this one is fine so far..
Since I have a small machine shop in my garage if needed I'll make new screws or parts and improve it if needed.

Johnny Kleso , Sep 10, 2011; 02:21 a.m.

I just took the ball head a part to check the quality as I have worked metal as a machinist for 30+ years and wanted to see if I could improve with a screw change for remake a part stronger..
I think for the money knowing the ARC Swiss is $400 I would say it should cost $100 - $150 max as with this ball head what should be steel is steel and aluminum is AL. and is made well enough and should last a life time ...

Frank Major , Sep 12, 2011; 09:16 a.m.

Hi Johnny -

After reading your recommendation, i am considering this ballhead. I have a Mamiya RB67 Pro-S (about 6lbs) and would use this head in conjunction w/some new CF legs (from a reputable manufacturer and conservatively rated at 22lb capacity). I would be using it for landscape photography (possible exposure to very high mountain winds) so i *need* a really stong set-up.

I'm not a machinist nor currently have precision tools, but am very mechanical and could drill/tap/re-thread screws as necessary (i've done that type of job many, many times on automobiles/snowmobiles/etc).

Do you think this ballhead would work for my intended application? It would need to have great lock-down strength....



Johnny Kleso , Sep 12, 2011; 05:30 p.m.

I can't see how the ARCA Swiss can be much stronger than the quality of the aluminum used to make the ball or housing..
The Fanicer has two lock screws at 180º a part , maybe a better locking design..
The ARCA has a single position double knob that I am not sure how it works..

I have a Nikon D90 and a 70-200 f2.8 and only have to lighty lock the screws..
The base plate has a lock pin you have to push to slide camera off mount that is simple and works well...
I wish I have used the ARCA but maybe you can give me your opinion if you buy one...
Its not a bad price even if just for a flash when you look at the $400 cost of the ARCA

Frank Major , Sep 13, 2011; 10:01 a.m.

Hi Johnny,

Do you think the locking mechanisms/components will 'loosen up' to the point of an inability to lock securely?

Johnny Kleso , Sep 13, 2011; 12:46 p.m.

NO, Not at all....
It only takes light presure to lock the ball down..

Frank Major , Sep 16, 2011; 06:18 a.m.

Hi Johnny,
Do you notice if the camera shifts as you lock the head down? This seems to be a big problem with budget ballheads....

Johnny Kleso , Sep 17, 2011; 11:36 p.m.

The ball dosen't shift at all but the 360º swing thing what ever correct name is :)
That does move 1/2º when locked..
I read that in a review about this head and this one does the same..
For me this is not an issue and it always moves in the same direction and if needed you just set the pointer a 1/2º ahead before locking..

    1   |   2     Next    Last

Back to top

Notify me of Responses