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RRS Nodal slide on a BH-55 ball head

Discussion in 'Tripods, Ball Heads, and Gimbals' started by Red Bicycle, Sep 6, 2008.

  1. Red Bicycle

    Red Bicycle

    103
    May 13, 2008
    Australia
    Hi

    I am just about to order a RRS BH-55 ball-head and a L-Plate. In the future I would like to shoot some panoramas and will purchase the Panning Clamp, PCL-1, and the Precision Nodal Package, 192-PPP, when the bank account looks better.

    My question is that given the BH-55 has a panning scale on it's base, is it necessary to purchase the panning clamp or could I make panoramas by simply attaching the nodal slide directly to the ball-head?

    Kind Regards

    Michael
     
  2. aldirtfarmer

    aldirtfarmer

    300
    May 2, 2006
    Aiken, SC
    Michael,

    That will work just fine. While I don't have the RRS ball head I do use the Kirk BH-1 and a home made nodal side.

    Just take care to level the tripod base (the panning base) and then level the nodal slide which if everything is fitting should level the camera. With the ball head it is easy to get just a slight skew between the panning base and the nodal slide. To make this set up easier I made a "gag" to fit between the top of the ball head outer body and the underside of the quick connect plate. Making this a snug fit makes the set-up easier and faster.

    Joe
     
  3. Michael,

    You can make do without the panning clamp but it is so much easier if you have one.

    Getting the panning clamp makes leveling your camera a quick one-stop affair. Without a panning clamp, you first have to level the tripod. That's a major pain because you'll have to adjust each leg so that your ballhead's panning base is level. After you level your tripod, you then have to level your camera by adjusting your ballhead.

    Now, if you have the PCL-1, you do away with the first step above and leveling your camera becomes a lot quicker and easier.

    Do you NEED the panning clamp? If you like doing panos, my answer is YES!

     
  4. Red Bicycle

    Red Bicycle

    103
    May 13, 2008
    Australia
    Thank you Joe and Jerric

    No I understand that it is the leveling function of the Panning Clamp that is really most important for ease of use. I think I will wait until I can purchase the nodal slide and panning clamp together.

    Kind Regards

    Michael
     
  5. davewolfs

    davewolfs

    633
    May 23, 2006
    Off topic, but I would take a serious look at the Markins M20 with the RRS B2 LR II head. That BH-55 is HEAVY!
     
  6. Red Bicycle

    Red Bicycle

    103
    May 13, 2008
    Australia
    Lighter than my current head

    Thanks Dave, but it is 1/2 a kilo lighter than the Manfrotto Junior Geared Head I currently use so looking forward to a 'Lightweight' head:wink:

    Regards

    Michael
     
  7. davewolfs

    davewolfs

    633
    May 23, 2006
    Crazy well that should be a pleasing upgrade. I actually just switched from the BH-40 to the M10 and you cannot compare the smoothness between the two heads, the Markins are simply amazing.
     
  8. Red Bicycle

    Red Bicycle

    103
    May 13, 2008
    Australia
    Oh well I bit the bullet and have ordered the RRS BH-55 with the Panning Clamp, L Plate and Precision Nodal Slide all at once.

    Can't wait to get started learning panorama shooting/stitching techniques. I have so many places where I want to revisit and have some fun with this gear. thanks for everyone's input.

    Regards

    Michael
     
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