Thanks for your kind words Pete. We do what we can, sometimes dropping the ball. Some of our "contract" labor for assembly & fulfilllment is from my head injury support group and they have cognitive "issues". I feel good about helping the disabled this little bit but it does create a few glitches now and again. In the big picture it is not like we are shipping organs for transplant. . . no harm no foul.
As far as the rings issue and quick disconect. For starters, you should not use the rings unless you have a camera that uses rings. Brackets do not need the rings. In addition, you should use the rings we send only on old cameras that have worn rings. . .otherwise use the mfg rings.
I've been working on a quick disconnect for almost 2 years now. Most of you know not to trust a plastic quick disconnect on anything of any weight unless you are willing to chance the possibility of failure and the ugly result. Given that the vast majority of my clients are working professionals who use the biggest bodies and sometimes the largest glass, there was no way I would use a plastic QR knowing that the best of them has a break strength of about 115 lbs at a nominal working temp. Put one on a 400 2.8 with a Mark II during a 20 degree Superbowl and even if said pro was willing to do so. . .disaster was in the making.
I was in the process of building a 275 pound test QR when I came across a 960 pound QR made for NASCAR helmets and F-16's. I ordered 400 and began production as this was a beautiful (but expensive) metal to metal QR with a ballistic nylon cover. As I was in the first production run I was checking a connection and pullled the release at a 45 degree angle. . .it let go! I was stunned!
I contacted the mfg and sent him a sample explaing the problem in our application that is different in that the direction of pull is not always in a straight line but perhaps on an angle if a body or lens would hang the QR and the angle pull issue would happen.
This man make a trip to California to speak with the actual builder of the part and explained the problem. As I understand it they have re-engineered the body and re-cut the mold to have enough support to withstand the angle pull. Given his other clients and the small quantities we would use. . .this was major league customer service.
At the same time, I have started back on the original design of mine and some new parts have come in. I need only to decide on one more part and then a sub-contractor and method for an attachment to the camera.
I have been accused of absurd overkill and over-engineering and assured that all will be well without all this strength. However it does not take a mensa member to realize that there are situations where a jerk strength of over 250 pounds from strap to body or lens is quite possible. Of course none of these guys who yell overkill would be willing to pay the damages is the plastic release were in play. The buck stops here in Tallahassee!
From what I see from the orders that come in you guys carry around $10,000 on your shoulder? Sometimes more, sometimes less. This does not count the time you put in to make the images, the downtime if it breaks and the hassle. . .although repaired it may never really work right again.
As a photographer I have dealt first hand with such a disaster. Was it user error or an old plastic QR that had some dirt or a few grains of sand in it? I do know it ate the front end of a 135 2.0 that was hand picked by a Nikon tech as a special favor and was a killer lens.
So, until I can send you a release that I would trust, that is foolproof. . . be patient. The good news is that I am very close, perhaps in more than one version. One more elegant than the other but one that has a built in saftey feature that even if the release becomes unhooked, the release stays in place until you unhook it.
Please don't email me asking when or for photos as the moment it is finished a patent will be filed.
Good shooting and thanks for your business. This is really a great website with a ton of great information on it.