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Archive 2013 · FLM ballheads
  
 
grog13
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p.1 #1 · FLM ballheads


Anybody have any experience with FLM heads? Found one (Centerball 38) that looks right for me on paper, and I'm aware of their generally good reputation for quality, but I can't find much user info on them.
Thanks.........



Jan 14, 2013 at 02:58 AM
EB-1
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p.1 #2 · FLM ballheads


Is the QR clamp A-S compatible? If not, I'd pass for sure.

EBH



Jan 14, 2013 at 03:34 AM
sjms
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p.1 #3 · FLM ballheads


what qualities do you believe it has to peak your interest?


Jan 14, 2013 at 04:31 AM
reggie747
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p.1 #4 · FLM ballheads


Some years back I used I think a CB38(?) model for about 3 yrs with a 1D2 and various lenses. The only reason I gave it up was that I got a great deal on a Manfrotto Hydrostatic equivalent.
I gave the FLM to my friend who still uses it now without issues.
It actually had a better more clearly marked out panning base than the Manfrotto and I do miss that factor.



Jan 14, 2013 at 11:28 AM
grog13
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p.1 #5 · FLM ballheads


Regarding the QR clamp, it has none. See http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/874526-REG/FLM_FLMCB38_CB_38_BALL_HEAD.html . I plan to use a panning clamp. What makes it interesting to me is its low profile, light weight, adequate capacity (I'll use with D7000 & 16-85 mostly) and simplicity. B&H site doesn't have specs, but weight is around 10 oz. with 38mm ball; rated capacity about 33 lbs (for what that's worth). Don't need separate pan lock or friction control, so why pay for & carry around?


Jan 14, 2013 at 01:48 PM
 

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sjms
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p.1 #6 · FLM ballheads


then its the one for you.

http://www.flm-gmbh.de/en/downloads/FLM%20Katalog_2012_e_web.pdf



Jan 14, 2013 at 03:04 PM
gardenvalley
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p.1 #7 · FLM ballheads


I had their CB32 a few years back but was not impressed. Whilst made from quality materials and of good overall design, it had one major unforgivable flaw: the ball was not smooth. Close inspection revealed the ball to have been machined but neither polished or anodised or to have any coating whatever, eg Teflon. A quick strip-down also revealed that the cup in which the ball sits, and is responsible for locking it, was also bare metal, no nylon or Teflon bearing. The ball would certainly lock solid but any kind of preset on the tension knob resulted in jerky movements and grinding and scraping noises from the metal to metal contact.


Jan 14, 2013 at 05:51 PM
S Dilworth
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p.1 #8 · FLM ballheads


I had an FLM Centerball 38 FT, with more knobs than I knew what to do with. A few photos of mine (since sold):

One
Two
Three
Four
Five
Six

The pan base worked well, but the other knobs were of dubious value. You’re right to opt for the simplest model that will work for you.

As you can guess from the photos, the quality of the materials and finish is pretty good (but see below). When you pick it up it feels like a high-quality item. I’m sure it would last a long time.

However, it doesn’t work as well as you might think. The ball movement isn’t terribly smooth, as gardenvalley said, and mine required enormous force on the lock-knob to actually lock the ball firmly. So although the materials look good, they might not actually be best-suited to their purpose.

The FLM compared unfavourably with my replacement heads: a Markins Q3 Traveler (impressively strong, light, and smooth), and an Arca-Swiss Monoball Z1 (a much bigger device, but with phenomenal precision and locking power: you can clamp it with your little finger and it’ll hold a charging rhino!).

That said, for light duties the FLM head might be okay. It certainly looks the part. And the one you’re looking at is ‘only’ a hundred bucks.



Jan 16, 2013 at 08:48 AM
vsg28
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p.1 #9 · FLM ballheads


The FLM brand seems to be the same as Triopo on eBay. Prices here seem cheaper if you decide to go with it. I remember a guy on POTN kept raving about the Triopo head with 36 mm diameter that could easily support a 500 f/4 lens if I am not mistaken.


Jan 18, 2013 at 12:32 AM





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