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Rodless lens support
  • Hey, I'm on the fence for getting a Sigma 18-35mm + focal reducer for my GH2 but from what I read a lens support is recommended. I'd like to keep my setup and investment minimal so I'm looking for something compact that I can use with my current tripod/head. Getting rods fails both criteria. My gear is Manfrotto 055C legs and 029 head with hexagonal quick-release plate. I'd like to keep the QR capability. I haven't been able to find something that will fit all that. Do you know of anything?

  • 12 Replies sorted by
  • Ah yes! Know what 's funny? I had actually found this 1 some time ago and totally forgot about it... I might have to give my poor brain some rest.

  • A noob question: how do I get from the Manfrotto head's hexagonal QR to this rail type clamp?

  • Here's another, for considerably less (but haven't tried it; am also looking):

  • Thanks for the tip. I found this review and how-to to adapt it to shorter lenses:

  • Though more expensive I like the Hejnar one because it's compact. Am I right that the thread holes in the horizontal plate can be used to attach to my QR plate?

  • Just out of interest what is the value of this over a 15mm rod system? I was recently in the position of looking for a lens support for my 200mm Nikon for use with the GH3 and GH2 and was tossing up between a fotga rails set and varavon lens support or the Hejnar Photo lens support.

    I liked the idea that the Hejnar would be designed to do one thing well and was tempted but then I realised that for me the Rails and lens support for a little bit more money would allow something that I could grow into. And also I needed something to be able to attach the Small HD DP4 to. I now have the Rails but am still waiting on the support from varavon, so I can't tell you how stable it is.

    Anyway just curious. If I did not have the monitor I possibly would have gone with the Hejnar because of its compact nature.

  • I used these $AUD2.99 Oil Filter wrenches with heavy cinema anamorphic adapters. You've got to be handy with metal and rail rig accessories, but about an hour's work and I've usually got a rail support.


  • @whynot : Well for one I'm not planning to get a monitor. I'm an artist/performer touring with a lot of stuff, trying to optimize bulk as much as I can. I'm filming for documentation purposes, not my main job, and want to keep it compact. Adding rods would also mean adding a case/bag for it. I might be wrong but it seems to me that I can't simply mount rods on the tripod head that I have, meaning more investment to make it work.

    @goanna: Yeah I'm also considering DIY, I do have access to laser cutting/CNC milling and some handy friends...

  • Sure. Light is right. Sounds like Goanna's suggestion plus your connections sound good. Good luck

  • A potential issue with the Hejnar is that the lens support can only be mounted on the end of the rail. This means that your camera would need to be repositioned fore/aft to position the lens over the support. It may be uncomfortable to use a setup where the rail extends behind the camera.

    A 15mm rod-based solution would allow the lens support to move to any position to properly support a lens, making it more versatile for various lenses and cameras.

    The clamp and rail from Hejnar are both Arca-Swiss compatible, so if you're tripod's clamp is AS, you can just drop the rail in. Otherwise it looks like the tripod's plate could be mounted in the 1/4"-20 holes, but not the slots as they appear to be threaded only at the ends.

    Note that you'll also need an AS plate for your camera to mount in the included clamp.

    Here's a simple Arca-Swiss plate for ~$10:

    You can also get basically the same setup by getting the components ala cart:

    As an alternative, you might want look at the Fotga DP500 baseplate/lens support for $75. Size and weight wise, it doesn't look much different than an Arca-Swiss macro rail setup (same length, etc.) and it can be broken down to transport however you like. The other nice thing is that you wouldn't need any additional parts-- the camera and tripod both mount to the baseplate.

  • Thanks for the detailed input. I haven't made any decisions yet as the investment in the Sigma 18-35mm, a focal reducer adapter, lens support etc is quite steep for my current financial fitness...