Swap Tripod Heads The Fast Way!

Question – What happens when you have multiple heads that you want to use with multiple support methods?

Maybe you have a gimbal head and want to use it on a tripod, then later want to use a ball head on that same set of legs. Or perhaps you want to use your gimbal head on both your tripod and monopod. For that matter, you may have other swaps you want to do. 

The problem is, it’s always a hassle swapping tripod heads all day long. Well, not anymore. In the video below, I’ll show you how you can swap heads back and forth between one tripod and another or between a tripod and monopod in just seconds.

Clamp:
Really Right Stuff B2-LR-II Lever-Release Clamp (60mm)

Dovetail (Small, round)
Really Right Stuff TH-DVTL-40 Round Dovetail Plate

Dovetail (for larger heads, like the BH-55)
Really Right Stuff TH-DVTL-55 Dovetail Plate

PS – 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 as well as my new Noise Reduction video workshop. They’re filled with hundreds of tips, techniques and information just like this. Check ’em out – click here (hey, it’s free to look 🙂 )

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Krzysztof Hejnar
Krzysztof Hejnar
3 years ago
Al Wyman
Al Wyman
3 years ago

Hi Steve… Instead of adding the additional clamp on top of the tripod, why couldn’t you just add the DVTL-40 to the bottom of the Gimbal and then just clamp it directly onto BH-55 ballhead instead of removing the ballhead.

Paul Lindqvist
3 years ago

Arca Swiss makes a dedicated system for this, well worth checking out for people with multiple tripods and heads

https://www.arca-shop.de/en/tripod-heads/upgrade-conversion/39/quicklink-set

Stan Bysshe
3 years ago

So will you still use the DVTL-40 on your Gimbal head and switch to the DVTL-55 to your ballhead? Or the 55 on both?

Terry
3 years ago

Hi Steve…I did this on my Really Right Stuff 34L for my BH-55 and the Really Right Stuff Gimbal. This is an awesome solution and I used it also for my Magic Carpet Slider and Syrp Genie Time Lapse motion control unit. It works great!

John Terpstra
3 years ago

Hi Steve, Love your videos and I have all your eBooks as well. They are great. A comment on your quick release setup. I notice that you use and recommend the TH-DVTL-40 on your BH-55 ball head. On the RRS and the B&H web sites they state that the TH-DVTL-40 is made for the BH-40 ball head which has a diameter of 2 inches and that the TH-DVTL-55 is what should be used for the BH-55. It has a diameter of 2 ¾ inches. I use a RRS TA-U-LB leveling base on my WH-200 Gimbal that has the same diameter… Read more »

Dan
Dan
3 years ago
Reply to  John Terpstra

Hi Steve
I ask RRS about using the TH-DVTL-55 to secure my PG-02 HB using a B2-LR-II clamp. I have found the 55 QR plate slides around in the clamp (until locked) causing misalignment to the center of the tripod.
They told me to eyeball it to get it centered. I saw that you used the TH-DVTL-40 which has two retaining screws. Is that to keep it perfectly centered ?? Have you found this problem with the 55 plate.

Morganp
Morganp
3 years ago

Morgan’s Revenge. Every time I watch one of you videos on tripod I need to go buy more stuff. I have a TA-4 Leveling Base on my RRS tripod. For a Gimble Head this gives you a way to level the base in a second or two and their is no need to mess with your tripod legs to level it.

Enjoy

Morganp
Morganp
3 years ago

Would you stop showing me cool new things for my RRS Tripod. Just kidding I love this stuff. Keep up the videos…

Bill Zombeck
Bill Zombeck
3 years ago

Hi Steve,

That’s the first time I’ve seen you use the RRS tripod. Did you switch from your Gitzo’s to the RRS tripods or are you just testing out the RRS. Excellent tip on changing out the various tripod heads. Thank you! I have both of your ebooks and have read them numerous times. So many wonderful tips and great information in those ebooks. I’m anxiously awaiting for your upcoming ebook.

Bill
Bill
3 years ago

Thanks Steve for that tip, always love your videos!

Andrew Sentipal
3 years ago

Outstanding idea. I use the RRS leveling base with my BH55 but I am confident this will work fine. No more Sidekick and I get the benefit of the full Wimberly head. Thanks Steve.

Andrew Sentipal
3 years ago

Great idea. I just bought this setup. So long sidekick. Thanks Steve.

Steven Davis
Steven Davis
3 years ago

will it work with most tripods? By the way I love your wildlife photography secrets.

Steven Davis
Steven Davis
3 years ago

will this work with most tripods? I use an alta pro tripod. By the way I love your “Secrets to Stunning Wildlife Photography”.

Steven Pumilia
Steven Pumilia
3 years ago

Thanks Steve… been meaning to email you with this exact question !

Steven Pumilia
Steven Pumilia
3 years ago
Reply to  Steve Perry

I remember you explaining in in CR… I went to the RRS webiste (thinking how many different plates can they sell) and my eyes glazed over…. so now I have ordered what I needed.

Rich+Cower
Rich+Cower
3 years ago

That’s fantastic Steve. Thanks.

Jamie
3 years ago

I would have concerns the Really Right Stuff clamp could come undone by accident.

FPD Cotterill
3 years ago
Reply to  Jamie

Check out the Zenelli Quick Release Plate (BandH sell the Conversion) that has backup lock on the QR mechanism. Apparently this can be bought alone, although it’s part of the CARBONZX gimbal – pricey but the Rolls Royce of gimbals(!)
I’ve come to rely on the S African made Gimpro gimbal that has very similar 2 stage QR lock to RRS. No problems as it takes rare event to swing it fully open. But then I always clip a safety lanyard to big rig’ although not everyone likes these as they can snag

Shutterbug
Shutterbug
3 years ago

Wish I had known before I purchased another Gitzo tripod. Am going to consider acquiring these devices. Thanks very much, Steve!!! Enjoy Costa Rica!

Jen Thompson
Jen Thompson
3 years ago

Wish I knew about this a few days ago; getting on plane in a few hours for Costa Rica! 🙂

Jen Thompson
Jen Thompson
3 years ago
Reply to  Steve Perry

It looks AWESOME … Buying as soon as we get back! Thank you for testing and recommending!

Antonio Biggio
3 years ago

Great great great advice!!!!!!. Thank you very much, these save me time, wheight and also money.