One tripod for thirty years – Manfrotto 075

December 03, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

The web is full of of the exciting side of photography, cameras, lenses, photoshop, discussions about full frame vs mirrorless etc, etc

But few about the humble tripod which of course has a massive effect on our, well my, photography. Try long exposures without a tripod.

Despite being a crucial piece of equipment I rarely give my tripod a thought.

Until I realised that I have had my Manfrotto 075 for thirty years, thirty years!

When I brought my tripod ;

I was loading 5×4 film into dark slides and using a 5×4 inch monorail camera.
I was driving a Ford Capri.
East Enders did not exist.
Madonna had her first No 1.
Torvill and Dean win a gold medal for ice skating at the Winter Olympics.
Prince Harry was born.

All of those years it has received use and abuse but it has taken all that I have thrown at it and carried on regardless. What makes it more impressive is that I brought it used, well used, age unknown, but solid as a rock for £20. I chose a used Manfrotto over a same price new tripod because of their reputation for quality. Over the years all of my kit has been changed and updated except my tripod.

My Manfrotto 075 has been used in a huge variety of environments, power stations, the top of the Humber bridge, workshops, factories museums, nature reserves, the sea, mountains and endless constructions sites.

It has been hauled up and down miles of scaffolding and ladders, has been stood in the sea, rivers, snow, sand and mud.

It has fallen from scaffolding, braking the winding handle for the center column. Been run over by a dumper truck and attacked by my teething puppy.

Despite of all of this my Manfrotto tripod is still going strong, rock solid and sturdy. You could argue that it is overkill for my tiny Fuji X-T1 but I have no fear of the tripod being blown over and dumping my camera on the ground, It will take the camera high enough that I need steps or remote control to use it and still be solid.

I do not mind leaving the tripod/camera to adjust something in set, it will not move and it has enough presence for people to know that it is there.

Most importantly it allows pin sharp photographs even at very long exposure even outside in the wind.

Thirty years of use and abuse, that is what I call value. If I ever have to replace it it will be with a Manfrotto :-)

Manfrotto 075 tripod

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Myself being supervised by Molly while testing the Ipad wifi link to the X-T1. Tripod fully extended. For scale I am 6ft tall.

 

Manfrotto 075 tripod

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Manfrotto 075 lowest height.

 

missing gear teeth

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Missing gear teeth after an encounter with a dumper truck

 

Broken wind arm

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Broken wind arm after a 30ft fall from scaffolding.

 

Manfrotto 075 tripod

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Intact locking levers on the left.
What my puppy did to the, now non existent, levers when teething on the right, thumb grips chewed off.

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