In case that’s left you scratching your head, I’ll start with a picture of an L Bracket. This is a Pig Iron, generic bracket similar to this one. I’ve had one my camera for around a year or so now and I would hate to be without it.But what the heck is it for?
It’s a bracket to attach your camera to your tripod and it’s quite simply to help when you want to go from landscape to portrait orientation with your camera and don’t want to have to do this . . .
Not that there is anything wrong with doing that – but it does throw the camera’s weight of centre and if it’s a windy day, or my tripod is in water for a long exposure, I want the weight to be as central as possible so it doesn’t topple and dunk my camera – and so it’s as steady as it can be.
The second thing here is that if you picture where the lens is in landscape orientation, and look at where it is when it’s leaning right over to one side, there’s a vast difference. To get back to my focal point, I need to move the tripod to one side and raise the height. No big deal really but it depends how many times, or how quickly you need to do it. It can be a bit of a bind. With an L Bracket, I undo the tripod bracket, turn the camera and then screw it back down and the lens is in roughly the same place it was before.
Since my two main interests are flower portraits and landscape, my camera spends a fair amount of time on a tripod and this saves an awful lot of ‘up a bit, down a bit, left a bit, right a bit’. In the pictures above, you can see that whether the camera is sitting on its bottom or its side, the centre weight is still over the tripod ball and that feels far safer to me!
My Pig Iron bracket has been good and sturdy and a year of use hasn’t seemed to put much strain on it in return for the £20 I paid for it. They come in all sizes, some made for specific cameras, others are generic that fit lots of cameras, and at any price from about £10 to over £100. My plan was to try a cheap one and see if it worked for me, and then get a better one. It works great for me but I haven’t seen a need to replace it with a ‘better’ one.
There as to be a ‘but’ – and in this case there are two things to consider:
- With the L Bracket in place, I cannot open the little door to plug in a cable release – but I use a remote one or my camera’s two second timer so this doesn’t worry me
- With the L Bracket in place, I cannot open the battery door on my D750. I have to unscrew the L Bracket and swing it to one side while I change the battery – which isn’t a deal breaker for me but it might be for you so worth bearing in mind.
FYI- The tripod in the picture is a 3 Legged Things Punks ‘Travis’. I bought this tripod fairly recently for carrying around and it is proving to be well worth the money. Another couple of trips and I’ll do a write up on that.
In the meantime, if your camera sits on your tripod a lot and you don’t use an L Bracket, it might be worth considering. Or if you think there’s a particular reason not to try, drop it in a comment below and see if it makes me change my mind 😀
Author – Sue Woollard – Capers with a Camera.