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Author Topic: "FLM" Carbon Tripods  (Read 2429 times)
tho_mas
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« on: January 31, 2013, 05:50:02 PM »
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Just recently bought a new tripod.
I love wood tripods (well, I clearly don't love to carry them but appreciate the extremely good damping of vibration) and have 2 of them (a large one with 2 extensions going above head level and a small one with 3 extensions). I also have a large Carbon tripod (extending above head level to 2 meters or so).
I wanted to add a really small, lightweight Carbon tripod that fits into hand luggage when flying intercontinental.

Looked at the Gitzo 2 series (of course) ... but finally went with an FLM carbon tripod (CP30-S4S).
FLM is a small german manufacturer, well known for their extremely rigid, well built ball heads: http://www.flm-gmbh.de/en/product4a.html
The tripod line is pretty new (they produce it since 1.5 years or so): http://www.flm-gmbh.de/en/product4b_1.html

Now, I can't (to be more precise: don't want to) come up with a detailed test report ... just suggest to look at FLM tripods if you look for a really beautifully and intelligently made, rigid Carbon tripod at a better price than a Gitzo. Actually it's german engineering and precission (whatever that means to you) at the price of far east products. Indoor tests show it almost behaves like a large wood tripod ... I have yet to test it under windy or under otherwise adverse conditions outdoors.
Only downside: the upper tripod plate is equipped with cork. Initially FLM made the plate without cork but they received many complaints about scratched camera bodies (OMG...). So they were "forced" to add cork. If you don't like that (actually you shouldn't like cork/rubber on the tripod plate) you can remove it and replace it with an aluminium plate.
The  legs are 8x Carbon. The tripods come with 10 years guarantee.

Don't know whether or not FLM is available in the US... but in Europe their products should be easily available ...

maybe something to look at ...
« Last Edit: January 31, 2013, 06:08:01 PM by tho_mas » Logged
Hulyss
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« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2013, 01:29:29 AM »
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Thank you Thomas, I will have a look at it. Looks very good.
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Kind Regards - www.hulyssbowman.com
Ari-FLM Canada
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« Reply #2 on: February 25, 2013, 01:31:05 PM »
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I'm just reviving this thread in case anyone needs more information on FLM tripods or ball heads; you can contact me through the FLM Canada website listed below as my signature.
Thanks to Thomas for posting this.
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paulmoorestudio
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« Reply #3 on: February 26, 2013, 06:12:37 AM »
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I have been using big berlebach wood for the past 5 years and this looks like a great alternative.. will check them out, thanks
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Ari-FLM Canada
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« Reply #4 on: February 26, 2013, 08:22:02 AM »
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Thank you, Paul.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me through FLM Canada's website, listed below this message; I am the Canadian distributor for FLM.
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tho_mas
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« Reply #5 on: February 26, 2013, 03:24:51 PM »
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I have been using big berlebach wood for the past 5 years and this looks like a great alternative.. will check them out, thanks
I also use Berlebach Tripods (2). Personally I think a Carbon can never replace a good wood tripod. Wood damps vibration much more effective and above all much faster than Carbon (Carbon tripods are a compromise between stabilty and lightweight after all). Of course the portability of wood tripods is not so comfortable...
But if you look for a lightweight alternative (or addition) to your Berlebachs the FLM tripods should be on the list of the tripods to check out... IMHO. Me personally I'd favor any of the FLMs over a Gitzo 2-series anytime ... but I'd also favour a Berlebach with (only) "good" damping (so with 3 extensions) over any of the Gitzos (or over the FLMs... or any other Carbon) anytime when portability is not so important. Let alone the Berlebachs with "very good" damping (2 extensions).
I'd use the FLM for my tech cam & DB without hesitation. For the Contax 645 & DB shooting outdoors... not so sure. In case of doubt I'd take at least my small Berlebach. Maybe this is only because the Berlebachs never let me down (even when just using the 2'' selftimer on the Contax... regardless of the shutter speed). I really trust them.
« Last Edit: February 26, 2013, 03:31:47 PM by tho_mas » Logged
paulmoorestudio
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« Reply #6 on: February 26, 2013, 08:29:04 PM »
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the only thing that I would like to see with the flm is a geared center column option...unless I am missing something.  My biggest complaint regarding the heavy berlebachs is no leg opening detents.. I like having some preset stops to open the legs to.. and with this comes stability.. if you have ever tried opening the berleback very wide to get low they there is a point of not return and if you have a heavy rig it will not support the weight.
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Ari-FLM Canada
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« Reply #7 on: February 26, 2013, 10:07:37 PM »
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The only reason I can see for FLM not having a geared center column is weight savings.
All of our columns are user-removable, and having a geared column would likely negate that feature, or at least make it unwieldy.

Our heaviest tripod comes in at 1,7kg, or 3.75lbs; you could say our tripod line is geared more to the traveling/location photographer.
What we do offer is an integrated levelling column, available on all our L-series tripods.

Somewhere there has to be a trade-off; I've tried to find the perfect 4x5 field camera, and while I've come close, I have to sacrifice some features in order to get others.

I will find out more information, though, and see if anything is in the works for a geared column.

Thanks for the enquiry.
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