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Railfan Technology > Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train passes?


Date: 11/08/19 14:26
Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train passes?
Author: rbenko

Hey all:

I don't take many videos, but when I do (and when I use a tripod) I've noticed that if I'm near the tracks when a train rolls by, the camera shakes noticeably. I've seen this on many videos posted here and elsewhere, although I've also seen rock-steady videos where the camera was quite close to the track.  Image-stabilization seems to make the situation a bit worse - the picture gets wavy in a very distracting way, although maybe that's just the IS on my equipment.

Anywho, anyone have any helpful techniques to combat this?  I have a pretty decent tripod (Gitzo composite legs with an Acratech ball head), but it's certainly not a video tripod.  Are there tripods out there that help this situation?  Anything else to try?

Thanks for any help.

Rob Benkovitz
West Palm Beach, FL



Date: 11/08/19 14:34
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: exhaustED

I've noticed this issue as well...

It gets better if i remember to 'stabilise' the tripod i.e. waggle it about so it's more firmly planted when on soft-ish ground.
I think it will also get better if you could attach a pretty heavy weight to the tripod to keep it stable.

Otherwise maybe there are tripods with integral dampers... but i bet they'd be expensive! 

I've just had a vague recollection that someone asked a similar question in thepast... and someone suggested putting a bean-bag under each tripod leg...



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/09/19 00:00 by exhaustED.



Date: 11/08/19 15:32
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: trainjunkie




Date: 11/08/19 15:38
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: refarkas

I used my hands to put a fair amount of downward pressure on the place where the tripod's legs join. The pressure had to be kept steady, so I did not pan often. Also, some surfaces vibrated like a drum head. You could be fifty to a hundred or more feet away from the tracks and still have vibration.
Bob



Date: 11/08/19 16:19
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: norm1153

I've read that it is best to turn off image stabilization when it's mounted on a tripod.  Maybe that could help.
 



Date: 11/08/19 16:39
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: NormSchultze

In many cases, yes. Turn off stabilization, unless, the system has a setting for stabilization AND tripod.  It's in the instruction manual, which we all have read--right?



Date: 11/08/19 22:26
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: wa4umr

A similar question came up a few years back. I looked up some articles about the problem and in the situation at that time, I found a few suggestions that seemed to make sense. The best one was using a car window clamp mount.  It may or may not work for you.

John

PS.  I did a little more looking around and often these mounts are listed a "spotting mounts."  They are used for spotting scopes for hunter ad shooters.  They also have a 1/4-20 threaded screw to attach the scope or camera.  I found prices ranging from about $7.00 up to $250.  Most are in the $15 to $45 range.  



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/09/19 13:20 by wa4umr.




Date: 11/09/19 19:21
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: rbenko

Thanks for all the great suggestions - I'll have to try a few next time I'm out shooting.  Seems that there isn't a quick, foolproof way of totally eliminating the vibrations (didn't think there was anyway), but some interesting things to try out.



Date: 11/10/19 08:23
Re: Best way to prevent tripod-mounted video shake when train pas
Author: choodude

I've been told the various steady-cam rigs are helpful, but I don't know which kind would work for you:


https://smile.amazon.com/s?k=steadycam+stabilizer&crid=19Y07ZOA6K73A&sprefix=steadycam%2Caps%2C187&ref=nb_sb_ss_i_3_9

Brian



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