One question I see drift through my e-mail box on a regular basis is about accessories – specifically, the ones I like and use when I’m out in the field. So I decided to put a video together and show you eight of my favorites. I use each and every accessory you see in the video on a regular basis and I honestly don’t know what I’d do without them!
Plus, most of them come in pretty cheap. Figure between $1.50 to $30 for all but the last one – and even that one’s not too expensive for what it is.
Anyhow, take a look to see what I use and why. Oh, and I apologize in advance for spending your money!
Here’s a list of all the accessories in the video:
1. Nikon Lens Wipes | Zeiss Lens Wipes
2. Pipe Insulation – any hardware / home store will have it
3. Running Buddy XL Buddy Pouch
4. AquaTech Lens Cap – Note that you have to click the little option boxes on this page to get the right one for your lens.
5. Eddie Bauer Stowaway Packable 20L Daypack (note that these go on sale frequently)
6. EPGear Pod Pad – Camo | Black
7. Acratech Stainless Steel 5/32 Allen Wrench (B&H Link) (Arcatech)
8. LensCoat Travel Hood – Large (400mm f2.8, 600mmf4, 800mm f5.6) | Small (300mm f2.8, 200-400mm f4, 400 DO f4, 500mm f4)
If you enjoyed this post, I think you’ll REALLY like my e-books, Secrets To Stunning Wildlife Photography and Secrets To The Nikon Autofocus System. They’re filled with hundreds of pages of information just like this. Check ’em out – click here (hey, it’s free to look 🙂 )
The Acratech Allen wrench is not longer available. Found the following on Amazon: A13 Photographers Multi-Tool 5/32 (4mm) Allen Wrench Hex and Flat Head Key Chain Tool.
Hi Steve, stumbled across your YouTube videos on long lens and bif techniques. I’ve been an amateur wildlife and landscape shooter for years, since before digital (I’m 69). Your tips are awesome. I hope you’re still doing the videos? I subscribed to your channel.
Hi Steve, Would the travel hood add to the camera shake of the big lenses? (Especially in windy conditions)
No more than the regular hood would – but in windy conditions, any hood can make things worse.
I took your advice on the pipe insulation for my September 2019 trip to South Africa and passed it on (with kudos to BackCountryGallery) to perhaps 25 fellow photographers. All of them carry an 18″ piece in their back seat and a backup in their trunk and won’t leave home without out. After my trip l and referrals to them, all I asked was for them to refer me to the elusive Nikon 500mm PF. Thanks for the tip
Found you on YouTube. Great videos. Been using the back button AF on my Nikon D750 ever since I seen it on your channel. It’s a life saver
The AquaTech lens cap for the Nikon 600mm is impossible to find online now (Summer/Fall 2018). Prices range from $35 to over $70 — but everything’s sold out. I managed to find a new one at my local photo gear store for $35 (Alexandria, VA). This place will ship within U.S. (including Hawaii and Alaska). Check them out at http://acephoto.net. You won’t see the cap listed online, but send them an E-mail and ask about it. They might have a few left. The owner Mo is very helpful!
Great ideas Steve! Thanks. I would love to buy the big glass lens cap and the foldable lens hood but do you know if they will also fit the Nikon 200-500 f5.6 or a 20yr old 300mm f2.8?
Sorry, just read the other comments 🙂 I will search the Aquatech website.
Thanks for the idea of the pipe insulation.
Very simple effective solution
Steve – which of the Aquatech Lens Caps fits the Nikon 180-400 f/4E with TC?
Honestly, I have no idea. Might need to contact them if possible, they may not have one yet.
The Aquatech website has a link to a reference pdf that identifies which caps fit which lenses. The Nikon 180-400 lens takes the ASCC-3 soft cap, item #1403.
The URL for the pdf document is: https://cdn.shopify.com/s/files/1/1220/0336/files/AquaTech_SoftCap_SoftHood_Chart_June_2018.pdf?17161556447738681450
The B&H link for the Acratech Allen Wrench says they’re out and don’t know if they’ll get more or not.
LOL, I think this article sold them out. I posted a link for Arcatech.
The EPGear Pod Pad is sold out as well. LOL you’re a great salesman, Steve, and you’re not even trying!
Here is another seller that it’s available.
EPGear Pod Pad Tripod Shoulder Pad
Some great ideas as ever …but the click through site for the tripod pad was $30 and $97 to send it to Northern Ireland ! B&H sending it for $27.95 + $20 carriage…..my shoulder can hardly wait. Have you tried the Gitzo gimble yet ?….really worth testing. Movement is damped for video etc but breaks out for fast action. Love it already.
Ouch! Some shippers are nuts, sorry about that. Have not tried the Gitzo gimbal yet.
Hi Steve. Thanks for these latest tips. FYI, in Australia, we talk about the “Australia tax” – meaning that we pay more here for just about everything.
I checked out the EPGear shoulder cushion and found an Australian retailer. They want AUD120 for the pad. I can get it from B&H for half that – including DHL charges! Australian followers: beware!
I love the Aquatech soft lens cap.
I just need to find one here in England?
I got mine Camerasunderwater a few years ago. Its a place in Cornwall that deals in marine camera stuff mainly, but i couldn’t find anywhere else in Britain that sells them
I noticed you were cleaning the actual lens glass with the wipes. Do you not recommend using the clear filters to protect the glass?
I only use protective filters if I’m in an environment where the lens is subject to salt blowing, sea spray, that sort of thing. Otherwise, I leave them off (which is 99% of the time)
Great video Steve! What is the bag you use for your 600mm lens. Having just acquired one I am in the market for a bag to hold the beast!
I use an old Gura Gear Kiboko 30L, but they are discontinued now. I think Tamrac owns them now and has a replacement, but it’s not really the same bag.
Thanks Steve. So many to choose from out in the market!
I found this item from Pro Media Gear (A13 Photographers Multi-Tool 5/32 (4mm) Hex and Flat Head Tool $9.99) to be a better deal than the $22.00 for the Arcatech allen wrench tool. It has the allen wrench with a flat head screw driver on the opposite side.
The Lenscoat collapsible fold flat lens hoods are great for air travel. The 600mm f/4 fits even in small overhead bins on Bombardier Q400 planes without the Nikon lens hood. No worries about cracking a $579 lens hood. I never check photo equipment and the Lenscoat hoods work well with my 500mm and 600mm lenses.
Do any of these work with the Nikon 200-500?
Not that I know of.
The LensCoat TravelHood Zoom is made for the Nikon 200-500 and similar zoom lenses.
Well up to your usual standard Steve. Intelligently pitched video with recommendations that come from your own experience. Love the pipe insulation on the car window! One or two of the items might be tricky to source in the UK (haven’t tried yet) but am definitely going to seek out a Pod Pad or similar. If I walk a few hundred yards with a D850 and 200-500 on the tripod over my shoulder I start to suffer.
You need to try a Platypod Max
The link to the Buddy pouch is outdated…here is a current listing: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07CS5H925/ref=s9_dcacsd_dcoop_bw_c_x_1_w
Thanks Geoff – all fixed 🙂
I have the Aquatech lens cap for my 500mm f4, and it does what it does and its the best thing out there really lens cap-wise for the large Primes. It was quite expensive at £40 but nothing is cheap in this game. My only complaint would be that it is difficult to clean and definitely dont use kitchen towels to dry it as small bits of paper dust kind of adhere to it and its difficult to remove
They are a pain to clean, no doubt. I tend to hose mine off and let it air dry. Like you say, no kitchen towels, makes a mess!
I love this lens cap for my 500 f/4. I find that the Nikon/Zeiss lens wipes do a pretty good job of cleaning it.
Awesome! I’m purchasing a couple of these for Costa Rica in September …
I think the little TC pouch has been my favorite here.
Hmm, that wasn’t on my short list but I’ll look more closely. I’m definitely bringing the 1.4x TC to Costa Rica with me, so perhaps I should pick it up.
Email server has been mistakenly classifying emails from BackCountryGallery as spam for about 6 weeks so I’m finally catching up on old articles. I know the 2X TC gets a bum rap, but that’s the tool I have for my 300/2.8 (for now).
My question is: Is there enough room in the pouch to hold the 2X TC? I love the idea of it and wish I knew of it years ago – hopefully it will fit.
The link to the Allen wrench on amazon says it’s currently unavailable. Great tips.
Oops – sorry about that, I did this article before i left for Costa Rica. I added a link for B&H too and they currently have it in stock.