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Old Apr 16, 2006, 3:21 PM   #1
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Hi there, I have just bought a Manfrotto 3021 ProB and a 488RC0 head, as you may well know the tripod as a bubble level and the head as two, this head as graduation marks round the base for accurate panning. So I levelled the legs first with bubble on top of the legs, then I levelled the head using the heads bubble, however when I rotated the head the bubble went out of line, so I levelled the centre post with my post leveller to make sure it was plumb and sure enough the bubble on the legs was reading out, although it was now plumb, when I spun the head this time the bubble on the head stayed inside the marks, Question ( at long last ) would you return the legs or is this the standard for this model of legs.
Many thanks
Bob

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Old Apr 17, 2006, 12:23 AM   #2
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I'd say its normal the head is level when you use the bubbles but for real pano work you may want to get something like the Bogen/Manfrotto 300N Panoramic Head for real accurate Panoramic work if your really interested in it for the fine adjustments.
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Old Apr 17, 2006, 7:25 AM   #3
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jtgraphics wrote:
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I'd say its normal the head is level when you use the bubbles but for real pano work you may want to get something like the Bogen/Manfrotto 300N Panoramic Head for real accurate Panoramic work if your really interested in it for the fine adjustments.
many thanks for your input, but, I don't think even the 300N head would work as it is the legs that are out of true not the 488RC0 head. So what you are saying ( I think ) is that the Manfrotto 3021 Pro set of legs won't level using their own bubble level, it is a bit sad when a well known brand of legs can't even get a bubble level, level

Once again many thanks Bob
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Old Apr 19, 2006, 12:00 PM   #4
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That would irritate me, if they supply a spirit level it ought to be calibrated!

The workaround that springs to mind are the leveling adapters that go between the legs and head, so that you can level your head without fiddling with the leg adjustments. But if you bought the 3021 with the intention of not needing this extra component and fillding with the legs is just fine to you, I'd try to get it fixed or replaced.
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Old Apr 19, 2006, 2:58 PM   #5
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tmoreau wrote:
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That would irritate me, if they supply a spirit level it ought to be calibrated!

The workaround that springs to mind are the leveling adapters that go between the legs and head, so that you can level your head without fiddling with the leg adjustments. But if you bought the 3021 with the intention of not needing this extra component and fillding with the legs is just fine to you, I'd try to get it fixed or replaced.

Yes it irritates me something shocking:P

I have now posted it back, I have asked for the next one to be tested before they ship it out to me, I will let the group know what happens.

many thanks Bob
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Old Jun 2, 2006, 9:25 PM   #6
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first of all that level is in a relative form accurate. it is a gross level not a precision one.to use that to try to level your head is a laborious and time consuming act . in addition its also real fun to watch someone do too.

if you are looking for a flat plane to pan off of and you want to set it up in a short bit its called a leveling head or leveling centerpost. in the film industry its called a half bowl.

with this sort of top it takes about 20-30 seconds to get it within a degree of level on a horizontal plane

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Old Jun 2, 2006, 9:29 PM   #7
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now for a 3021 there is also available a leveling head called the 555B as seen below. both devices allow the head base to be level with up to a 10 deg tilt on the legs


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Old Jun 2, 2006, 9:34 PM   #8
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tmoreau wrote:
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That would irritate me, if they supply a spirit level it ought to be calibrated!

The workaround that springs to mind are the leveling adapters that go between the legs and head, so that you can level your head without fiddling with the leg adjustments. But if you bought the 3021 with the intention of not needing this extra component and fillding with the legs is just fine to you, I'd try to get it fixed or replaced.


if you bought a tripod with a spirit level and expected 1 deg accuracy i must tell you you are on a fools errand. you need the precision at the closest point to your area of rotation. the further away you need to adjust its error is amplified.
i'm afraid you sent back a perfectly good tripod for a misunderstanding of relative merit of use.

you have to take into account many factors

1- was the floor level

2- is each leg perfect in equal length when extended

3- is the leg angles perfect when in each of the lock positions

4- are the magnesium castings perfectly machined and when coated is that coatin of equal thickness

you are under the assumption that this $150 (in the US) is of a extremely high level of precision. well reality and all those factors above say none are. including my gitzo. even a tripod used by surveyors use a leveling system between the legs and the particular precision measuring device on to or the device itself has a leveling protacol in it.


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Old Jun 4, 2006, 8:20 AM   #9
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sjms wrote:
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tmoreau wrote:
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That would irritate me, if they supply a spirit level it ought to be calibrated!

The workaround that springs to mind are the leveling adapters that go between the legs and head, so that you can level your head without fiddling with the leg adjustments. But if you bought the 3021 with the intention of not needing this extra component and fillding with the legs is just fine to you, I'd try to get it fixed or replaced.


if you bought a tripod with a spirit level and expected 1 deg accuracy i must tell you you are on a fools errand. you need the precision at the closest point to your area of rotation. the further away you need to adjust its error is amplified.
i'm afraid you sent back a perfectly good tripod for a misunderstanding of relative merit of use.

you have to take into account many factors

1- was the floor level

2- is each leg perfect in equal length when extended

3- is the leg angles perfect when in each of the lock positions

4- are the magnesium castings perfectly machined and when coated is that coatin of equal thickness

you are under the assumption that this $150 (in the US) is of a extremely high level of precision. well reality and all those factors above say none are. including my gitzo. even a tripod used by surveyors use a leveling system between the legs and the particular precision measuring device on to or the device itself has a leveling protacol in it.

Well thanks for your thoughts, yes I know about the half bowl and indeed the other methods of levelling, I have used theodolites in surveying so I know how to level things.

It does not matter if the floor is level

It does not matter if the legs are not the same length

Nor does it matter about the leg angle

But the casting (where the bubble sits )does have to be in the same plane as the top of the legs

In my country things have to be fit for purpose this is the law, so tell me what is the purpose of the bubble level if not for levelling the top of the legs.

I have re-calibrated the bubble and when I put my 488 on top and level that I now can pan accurately enough for me

I am still awaiting a response from Manfrotto

Bob

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