Friday, September 11, 2009

Pimp your Monopod

When I purchased my 40D back in June of 2008. Newegg was running some thing where it came free with a tripod and monopod. From some off-brand crap, called "Dolicia." The problem with this is that from day 1, the damn monopod (or the tripod really) wouldn't support the cameras weight.

This is supposed to be a big year for my Schools (American) Football team. I have been asked to cover some of the bigger games. The first one was Saturday, and Friday night I decided I would want to rig my monopod up, so it could help in some way. I've never shot sports before, and I was under the impression it was an absolutely essential skill. So my first step was to break off that little tab that keeps the ball head from getting unscrewed thinking that I would be able to tighten it more. Well over tightening didn't do it. So I unscrewed it and the ballhead came into 4 parts. There's a ball with the tripod screw; 2 halves of the container, and the screw. So the first thing that came to mind was increasing the friction and how tight the ball was. This was achieved by taking a roughly 2 inch strip of 1 inch wide gaffers tape, and wrapping it around the ball. Then I took little tiny squares and put one in each half of the ballhead. Re-assembled and voila problems solved! After I re-assembled I couldn't get the head to slip with a lot of force. Held the camera great too. The tiny problem is you really need to loosen it now for it to be loose and it's not as fluid as it was before.

5 hours of shooting the game (probably only use the monopod for 1/5 of that) and it worked well. The strap I Velcroed and clipped on was also a huge help. I'll say that the monopod is awesome for carrying the camera over the shoulder. It was very comfortable when just standing around. It got it from around the neck or in the hand to resting off the ground, very comfy.