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Ursa camera + Nikon 1,600 mm lens combo

Mid February-2016,  I purchased a piece of aluminum, from a metal supply shop in Calgary.

It was 1 foot wide, 4 feet long and 1/2 inch thick. Weight was over 28 lbs.


After a few days of looking and thinking, I finally had a vision of what had to be done. It took a few evenings to get the final shape. The ends are still 12 inches wide, but some of the center section was cut out and the overall length was shortened to 31 inches.

After making careful measurements – a small offset plate was added under to camera – to lift it. This would then allow the camera mount to align properly – with the lens mount.

Various mounting holes were drilled and the 4 corner legs attached.


The camera and lens first need to be carefully joined – while in a vertical position. The lens comes down to the camera – which is sitting on its back.

Once connected, it is carefully placed on the aluminum rig – which sits on a table.

The 3/8-16 hex bolt for the camera and the 1/4-20 hex bolt for the lens – have to be inserted upwards – thru this plate. These 5 inch legs, give enough of a gap – for the hands to work the Allen-Head wrenches.

This rig (camera, lens and plate), is then carried and placed on top of the QuickSet gear head. Once attached, the rig is basically center-balanced and I can then use the 2 gears to line-up a shot.

A 40 inch support rod is softly clamped to one of the front legs and another rod to a back leg. These 2 rods then go down and are then softly clamped onto the Gitzo’s tripod legs. Once I have the desired composition, all 4 clamps are tightened and I’m ready to shoot.

To the tripod, the rig has 5 points of contact – for maximum stability.

Ursa + 1600mm Nikon

This setup is a bit heavy and very stable…


The rig can also be placed on the ground, or any reasonably flat surface. Shims are placed under any leg – that needs to be lifted…


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