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Author Topic: Does anyone pack a ladder?  (Read 3607 times)

dreed

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« on: July 02, 2008, 03:13:23 pm »

On a recent day trip to do some shooting, it occured to me while thinking "if only I could get a bit higher and get that X out of the picture" that maybe I should start thinking about packing a ladder.

How big the ladder should be, is another question...

But does anyone already do this or have they tried and it was good/bad?

Of course this isn't something that is going to easily fit into your checked baggage when you fly somewhere, nor are the conductors on trains going to be over the moon to see you carrying one on board, but if you drive a ute/truck/wagon, well, there's some space back there...

Something else to try that I haven't yet is to take a monopod with cable release, so that once I've determined the exposure settings, I can try pushing the camera up in the air and shoot blind.  Not a great technique and very much hit-n-miss, however with digital media, the cost is relatively cheap so if it takes 20 throwaways while the camera is on x-fps mode to get the 1 keeper, it can still be worth it.
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peteh

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #1 on: July 02, 2008, 09:54:08 pm »

Quote
On a recent day trip to do some shooting, it occured to me while thinking "if only I could get a bit higher and get that X out of the picture" that maybe I should start thinking about packing a ladder.

How big the ladder should be, is another question...

But does anyone already do this or have they tried and it was good/bad?

Of course this isn't something that is going to easily fit into your checked baggage when you fly somewhere, nor are the conductors on trains going to be over the moon to see you carrying one on board, but if you drive a ute/truck/wagon, well, there's some space back there...

Something else to try that I haven't yet is to take a monopod with cable release, so that once I've determined the exposure settings, I can try pushing the camera up in the air and shoot blind.  Not a great technique and very much hit-n-miss, however with digital media, the cost is relatively cheap so if it takes 20 throwaways while the camera is on x-fps mode to get the 1 keeper, it can still be worth it.
[{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]
Werner make NICE ladders and very sturdy.I have a MT-22,sold all the 4 ladders I own after buying that one.If you don't have a 6 foot long bed or capacity they make a great step ladder model 105B 24 1/2 long or MT- 22 it does it all but HEAVY!
[a href=\"http://www.wernerladder.com/]http://www.wernerladder.com/[/url]
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Bill Caulfeild-Browne

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #2 on: July 02, 2008, 10:15:17 pm »

Quote
On a recent day trip to do some shooting, it occured to me while thinking "if only I could get a bit higher and get that X out of the picture" that maybe I should start thinking about packing a ladder.

How big the ladder should be, is another question...

But does anyone already do this or have they tried and it was good/bad?

Of course this isn't something that is going to easily fit into your checked baggage when you fly somewhere, nor are the conductors on trains going to be over the moon to see you carrying one on board, but if you drive a ute/truck/wagon, well, there's some space back there...

Something else to try that I haven't yet is to take a monopod with cable release, so that once I've determined the exposure settings, I can try pushing the camera up in the air and shoot blind.  Not a great technique and very much hit-n-miss, however with digital media, the cost is relatively cheap so if it takes 20 throwaways while the camera is on x-fps mode to get the 1 keeper, it can still be worth it.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=205053\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

Yes - I have a shoot of a hotel coming up and the only way to get above the clutter at ground level will be to lean my 22 ft extension ladder against a conveniently placed utility pole. The alternative is to rent a cherry picker but that's too much for this job.

I also like to shoot from the top of my truck camper which getsme about ten feet above ground.

Bill
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Hank

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #3 on: July 02, 2008, 10:24:36 pm »

Quote
On a recent day trip to do some shooting, it occured to me while thinking "if only I could get a bit higher and get that X out of the picture" that maybe I should start thinking about packing a ladder.

How big the ladder should be, is another question...

But does anyone already do this or have they tried and it was good/bad?

Of course this isn't something that is going to easily fit into your checked baggage when you fly somewhere, nor are the conductors on trains going to be over the moon to see you carrying one on board, but if you drive a ute/truck/wagon, well, there's some space back there...

Something else to try that I haven't yet is to take a monopod with cable release, so that once I've determined the exposure settings, I can try pushing the camera up in the air and shoot blind.  Not a great technique and very much hit-n-miss, however with digital media, the cost is relatively cheap so if it takes 20 throwaways while the camera is on x-fps mode to get the 1 keeper, it can still be worth it.
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=205053\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]

I use them extensively.  I've got 6' and 10' stepladders, one of which lives more or less contiuously in the back of my truck.  They can be used on the ground, but I also stand them up in the bed of the truck and use lines from the tie downs in each corner of the bed to secure the ladder.  I also use them extensively indoors on location.

Heart of the system is a Bogen Super Clamp with a 3/8" stud, onto which I can spin a ballhead.  Clamp it anywhere along the length of the ladder, and it's instant tripod, though you should avoid putting it on the relatively unstable paint shelf.  With a longer cable release you can step off the ladder for longer exposures.
« Last Edit: July 02, 2008, 10:25:27 pm by Hank »
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GerardK

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #4 on: July 03, 2008, 03:32:45 am »

I shot all attached images from a folding ladder very much like the one in the picture. Folded up it's small enough to fit in the boot of the car, but it's too heavy to hike any serious distance with.
(The pano is still under construction by the way.)

[attachment=7309:attachment]
[attachment=7310:attachment]
[attachment=7311:attachment]
[attachment=7312:attachment]
[attachment=7313:attachment]
[attachment=7314:attachment]

Gerard Kingma
www.kingma.nu
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JeffKohn

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #5 on: July 03, 2008, 08:45:47 am »

I have a combination dolly/step ladder that I got at Adorama (I'd post a link, but i couldn't find it so they may not carry it anymore). When shooting closer to home I"ll keep it in the trunk, it makes using my Dutch Hill P-900 Extended a little easier at full height. But it doesn't allow me to shoot from very high.

Hank I'm curious about the super clamp, as searching that term at B&H brings up quite a few part numbers. Is this what you have?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5160...Clamp_with.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5463..._Stud_with.html
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Jeff Kohn
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Hank

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #6 on: July 03, 2008, 11:43:11 am »

Quote
I have a combination dolly/step ladder that I got at Adorama (I'd post a link, but i couldn't find it so they may not carry it anymore). When shooting closer to home I"ll keep it in the trunk, it makes using my Dutch Hill P-900 Extended a little easier at full height. But it doesn't allow me to shoot from very high.

Hank I'm curious about the super clamp, as searching that term at B&H brings up quite a few part numbers. Is this what you have?

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5160...Clamp_with.html

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/5463..._Stud_with.html
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=205217\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


We have a bunch of the first one you list.  With that one you don't need to buy an accessory stud because the right one is included.  It has 3/8" thread on one end and a smaller thread on the other.  The second listing you put up is only for an accessory stud.

We have so many of the clamps (probably approaching 2 dozen) because they're so handy.  Many of Bogen's backdrop holding hardware relies on them, which is handy both in the studio and on location.  We also use them for mounting lights on industrial shoots where light stands are in the way, but there is no shortage of piping and railing onsite.  And all the while that 3/8" stud is waiting on the other end of the stud in case you need to mount your ballhead.

BTW-  I keep one of the Super Clamps on the base of a leg on each of our tripods.  It's not in the way, but it's immensely useful for macro shooting.  Set up your tripod, but put the head on the clamp rather than in the traditional position, and clamp it to a leg.  You can then move it up and down the leg, spin it, switch legs, or whatever, while macro shooting- all the way down to the ground if you want.  And no futzing around with resetting the tripod.  For wildflower shooting the other two legs are dandy for clipping on a piece of fabric as a windblock for your subject, too.
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mahleu

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #7 on: July 03, 2008, 12:40:48 pm »

I carry a little 3-step step ladder usually. I'm planning on making a platform that will sit on my car on the roof rack ala Ansel Adams.
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Hank

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #8 on: July 03, 2008, 01:41:31 pm »

Quote
I carry a little 3-step step ladder usually. I'm planning on making a platform that will sit on my car on the roof rack ala Ansel Adams.
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I gotta give it to old AA, and I hope the same is true for you.  There is some terrific balance involved.  I was waaaaaaayyyy too clumsy for the one I added to the cargo rack on my truck's canopy.  I came so close to falling off so many times (and did fall once) that I finally took it off.  

Part of the problem I would plan for on a contemporary sedan is soft suspension.   When you get up that high, every little movement you make causes the car to shake, and anything bigger than a small movement is likely to launch you like the bucking bull machine in a redneck bar.  

If you build a platform, also figure out how to lock your tripod down so you have a rigid handhold to keep yourself head up and feet down on the platform, rather than the reverse on the cold hard ground.  If you start to lose your balance your first grab will be the tripod, and take it from me:  The two of you hitting the ground together will make a sound that goes something like this:

Thump-clatter-ooooow-^%$&%$*!!!!!
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JeffKohn

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #9 on: July 03, 2008, 07:46:59 pm »

Quote
We have a bunch of the first one you list. With that one you don't need to buy an accessory stud because the right one is included. It has 3/8" thread on one end and a smaller thread on the other. The second listing you put up is only for an accessory stud.
Thanks for the confirmation. It didn't say what size the included stud was, so I wasn't sure if I needed to purchase the 3/8" stud separately. These look like they could be pretty useful in a variety of situations, and they're not even too terribly priced (unlike most specialty photographic accessories).

Thanks again,
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Jeff Kohn
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Hank

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Does anyone pack a ladder?
« Reply #10 on: July 03, 2008, 09:44:14 pm »

Quote
Thanks for the confirmation. It didn't say what size the included stud was, so I wasn't sure if I needed to purchase the 3/8" stud separately. These look like they could be pretty useful in a variety of situations, and they're not even too terribly priced (unlike most specialty photographic accessories).

Thanks again,
[a href=\"index.php?act=findpost&pid=205376\"][{POST_SNAPBACK}][/a]


Best buy in the photo world!
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