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by orb0554 on Fri Mar 17, 2017 11:32 am
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I just purchased three different Gitzo products and I am not pleased with the amount of movement of the fully extended leg(s). Please review each of these videos and provide feedback. I would appreciate your comments if this is normal for these Gitzo products.

I would also like to hear from actual owners/users of Really Right Stuff (RRS) Tripods if the RRS products have similar characteristics or is the leg(s) rigid when fully extended.

Gitzo GM4542 Series 4 Carbon Fiber Monopod:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/n2nlvx41rjwtqmi/AAB6R-bUJdo26abqVjXMmuVsa?dl=0

Gitzo GT2545T Series 2 Traveler Carbon Fiber Tripod:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/qdsghq2l2nso4cf/AACrN2cKDU9zofp_rjjjRem8a?dl=0

Gitzo GT5533LS Series 5 Systematic Tripod:
https://www.dropbox.com/sh/mrvx5tpm6jy0336/AADQNI73g3mwoHLSj0v38BkIa?dl=0

I will most likely return these new design Gitzo products but wanted to heard advice from the more knowledgeable community.

Thank you in advanced for your input.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Fri Mar 17, 2017 3:40 pm
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I have a 4542 and mine definitely does not do that - not sure how hard you are pushing but under normal forces, mine simply does not move at all
 

by Larry Shuman on Sat Mar 18, 2017 6:59 am
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I have a 5561T monopod and it does not do that. With it fully extended and I'm pressing down with all the strength I can muster , the monopod does not move. Perhaps you bought something that might too light for what you intended.

Cheers
Larry
 

by Neilyb on Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:45 am
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My older 5 series definately does not flap about as in your video, the legs act as though not tightened fully.
 

by SantaFeJoe on Sat Mar 18, 2017 10:47 am
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Did you buy from an authorized Gitzo dealer? I have read of counterfeits sold through Amazon and eBay. It's hard to find the exact details though. Nowadays everything seems to get counterfeited or imitated.

Joe
 

by orb0554 on Sat Mar 18, 2017 11:17 am
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The consensus seems to be that Gitzo tripods are rigid.

I am beginning to suspect that Gitzo has changed something in the current manufacturing process such that the tolerances are off for me to be experiencing this with three different products. Looking at the schematic for replacement parts, there is a plastic bushing that is attached to the end of inner tube that slides inside the outer tube. If this bushing is a hair too small it could account for the inner's tube OD being out of spec in relations to inside diameter of the outer tube.

I purchased these Gitzo products from three different authorized Gitzo dealers.

The Gitzo travel was purchased from Amazon, the monopod from Adorama Camera, and the Systematic here from NatureScapes.

As a follow up, I visited another camera store in the Northern Virginia suburbs that had a Gitzo GM4562 monopod, six section instead of four. The salesman took the monopod out of the box and when fully extended flexed in the same manner. The salesman said it obviously should not behave in this manner and that have never seen this before.

I have contacted Manfrotto and hopes of getting this issue resolved; otherwise I will return them.
 

by prairiewing on Sun Mar 19, 2017 12:09 pm
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What a bizarre situation. Three different pieces of equipment from three different sources all behaving the same way and then finding a fourth piece in a store also faulty. It will be interesting to see if this is just an extraordinary set of circumstances or the tip of a larger problem. Of interest to me since I've been pondering a replacement for an aging Gitzo.
Pat Gerlach
 

by Gary Gulash on Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:23 am
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orb0554, you have contacted "Manfrotto"...I assume you meant Gitzo?
 

by Mike in O on Mon Mar 20, 2017 11:53 am
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Gary Gulash wrote:
orb0554, you have contacted "Manfrotto"...I assume you meant Gitzo?


Manfrotto owns gitzo
 

by Gary Gulash on Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:58 pm
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Oh, didn't know this...thankyou.
 

by orb0554 on Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:13 pm
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I have been in contact with Manfrotto and have not received any replies after submitting the videos showing the flex in the tripods and the monopod and following up with the serial number.

Consequently, I have no other choice but to request a return authorization for these tripods and the monopod. I have lost confidence in Gitzo's quality control and Manfrotto's customer service is not very responsive.

Thank you for your comment and advice.
 

by SantaFeJoe on Tue Mar 21, 2017 1:38 pm
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This is an older direct number, but may still be correct, for the product manager at Manfrotto:

(201)818-9500 ext. 283

Joe
 

by OntPhoto on Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:27 am
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Does Gitzo have an official Facebook page? I find many companies respond much faster with a post to their Facebook page.

As to the original post, I assume all twist locking knobs are tightened down securely and just normal force is being applied to try and flex it.
 

by Greg Downing on Wed Mar 22, 2017 1:10 pm
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FWIW the one ordered from us is on it's way back to us here and as soon as I receive it I will inspect it myself and report back. It seems strange that you have tried 4 and found the same issue with all of them. Not sure if you're expecting too much or not but when I look at the tripod you sent back I will give you my thoughts. FWIW I have a 3532LS and have been happy with it for a long time. EJ just traded up his RRS tripod for a new Gitzo from NSN and is happy with it. RRS have their own set of problems and IMO Gitzo is better for a variety of reasons. Theirs (RRS) is "prettier" but not better....

FWIW in this case we have to take the customer's word for it and send the customer a full refund and pay for shipping back to us which is exactly what we did.

We are an authorized dealer and have been for 14 years.

Manfrotto and Gitzo as a brand have terrible customer service - that is why we started working with customers directly to order parts and offer support.
Greg Downing
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Visit my website for images, workshops and newsletters!
 

by orb0554 on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:35 pm
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Greg, you should receive the tripod on Thursday March 23, 2017 with your FedEx deliveries. I am anxious to read your findings after you inspect the tripod. I had actually hoped that Manfrotto would have stepped in asking to inspect my monopod and both tripods recently purchased; instead Manfrotto elected to be non-responsive.

I also have the older Gitzo GT1541T and a GM2541 that do not wobble and are rigid when fully extended. A friend has the GT5532LS and is very rigid with no flex at all.

I really think that something has changed with the source of the parts being used to assemble these tripods. The carbon tubes are most likely manufactured to maintain exact tolerances. Reviewing the spare parts list, the culprit based on how the legs flex may lie in the plastic "Hose Clamp Set". Basically, the hose clamp must be able to slide inside the carbon tube without any play. This is just my personal speculation.

I do agree, the Gitzo GT5533LS Systematic seems to have a superior spider design with the additional reinforcement between the leg joints and I selected this model over the TVC-43 as everything else was about equal. l really liked the GT5533LS and wished that I could have kept it but Manfrotto does not seem to care about resolving what I consider to be a defective product. I sincerely expected more from Manfrotto's customer service specially after purchasing three different Gitzo Products.

Regards, Oscar
 

by Ed Cordes on Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:48 pm
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Wow! I too am anxious for Greg's report. I have had a Gitzo for over 10 years and am very happy with it. It does not wobble like that.
Life is beautiful, but remember, a little mild insanity keeps us healthy
 

by Greg Downing on Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:46 pm
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Received it back today...

IMHO it is not at all defective. If you don't have the legs fully extended and you push on the leg itself sideways it will give you a tiny bit of play - until you put downward pressure on it then it locks up really solid with virtually zero movement or vibration on the top surface of the tripod. It is a 5 series tripod and to be honest they have made some design changes for the better actually with watertight seals etc. but that's another discussion...

The inside bushings (I did take it apart) ARE different from the model I have in that they are integrated together as one piece and are slightly easier to get the leg back together - so there mght be a slight bit more play but it does not seem that way to me. What folks need to realize is that there has to be some play at the end of the smaller leg top as it inserts into the larger leg above. If not you would have your leg freeze up as temperature fluctuates. Also, anyone using a heavy tripod and heavy camera should settle your tripod in when you set it up, as in stretch the legs outward enough that there is some tension on them as that stiffens everything up and takes any play out. The way the leg locks are designed is the more downward pressure you put on the the tripod the tighter those connections get and I am easily able to get this tripod to settle into a rock solid position thus eliminating any side movement when weight is put on it. Perhaps you did not tighten the leg locks enough or settle them, by pushing downward on them enough to eliminate any play.

Those are my thoughts :D
Greg Downing
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by orb0554 on Thu Mar 23, 2017 6:44 pm
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IMHO a tripod needs to be rigid when fully extended. Having to leave more of the leg inside and not fully extended is a compromise. This is a series 5 tripod and there should be no compromises. I say this as my friend's GT5532LS is rigid even with the legs fully extended.

I would like to hear your thoughts on the GT2545T if you happen to have one to examine. I like the tripods design and would be a great tripod on trips but this version has too much flex.

Thank you for your assessment and comments.
 

by Greg Downing on Thu Mar 23, 2017 7:44 pm
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I didn't mean to imply that it could not be fully extended - it's rigid throughout IMO, again once settled in.

I just took a video of me hanging from this tripod - I did this about 15 years ago with a 3 series... I'm getting too old for this but even when I am throwing my close to 200 pounds of weight around the top of the tripod remains solid and my hands do not move. 

I don't mean to question your opinion, and again we were happy to take the tripod back, but since you started the post I feel like I should at least do my due diligence. I don't think you're going to get what you're looking for in a carbon fiber tripod based on all the tripods I have used over the years. 

Sorry for the out of focus video but my phone is messed up...

https://youtu.be/-n3xg8L3_fw


The 25 series Gitzo you inquired about would be significantly less stable than the 5 series you returned. The leg lock design is the same but the legs are of course much smaller. The center column attachment is also a weak point which is why I generally use a tripod without a column with big lenses. 
Greg Downing
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by E.J. Peiker on Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:22 am
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ROFLOL - that video will become an instant YouTube classic :)
 

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