Road Train !!!!!!!!!!

by Russell McMahon

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I am not sure whether it is appropriate to ask for product recommendations on this site, but I've been struggling with finding a proper camera bag for so long that I hope I can find help here.

We occassionally go to far-away tropical destinations to shoot wildlife, as a hobby. As such, we currently have a Nikon bag that exactly fits our needs in terms of capacity:

  • Two DSLR bodies
  • Two normal lenzes (meaning they can be placed vertically in the bag)
  • One big 500mm lens, placed horizontally
  • One external flash
  • Several small accessories

No problem. The bag works, and there's a zillion ones on the market with similar capacity. However, we cannot attach our tripod to it. There are several bags that have that capability, but we have an odd-shaped tripod head: the Manfrotto M393, which is very wide and top heavy when collapsed.

We have been advised to check out the Lowepro Pro Trekker 600 AW Mica/Black. It's awesome but overkill. We don't need that capacity, its too big, it probably doesn't solve our tripod problem and it is way to heavy even when empty.

So, summarizing our needs:

  • Meeting our capacity needs as described above
  • Ability to carry our odd-shaped tripod securely and comfortably
  • Reasonable bag weight and size

...is there any camera bag you know of that comes close to this?

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3  
Why not just take the head off when traveling? It's not a big effort to take off/put on. –  Dan Wolfgang Aug 1 '12 at 23:02
    
@DanWolfgang I want to carry the combination as a whole attached to the backpack. I could remove the head for air travel, but that's not my question. –  Ferdy Aug 2 '12 at 6:47

2 Answers 2

What about putting the tripod in a bag of its own?

http://www.kgear.com/store/t/bags.html

I'm happy with all the gear I've bought from Kinesis.

If you don't want to remove the tripod head, have you thought about a different head that isn't so bulky? I have the Acratech GV2, that functions like a Gimbal.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/599678-REG/Acratech_1152_GV2_Ballhead_Gimbal_Head.html

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Yes, I do have a seperate bag that somewhat fits the combination of tripod and head. Ideally though, I'd like a single solution. It would be quite inconvenient for someone to carry both the camera and tripod bag. –  Ferdy Aug 2 '12 at 6:49

You want the Manfrotto 401N Quick Action strap. Sadly, it seems to be no longer available. (There are 5 on ebay however...) I was given one a few years ago and I thought it was the dumbest thing around. At least until I used it on a shoot.

You carry your tripod, head down, on your back on a diagonal. When you need it, you lift it up over your head and the strap stays on the tripod so you don't waste anytime setting it up.

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