For track photographers

Discussion in 'General' started by David-imoddavid, Jul 8, 2018.

  1. David-imoddavid

    David-imoddavid Well-Known Member

    I shot a lot of track days and races several years ago. I was losing a lot of shots because they were soft or totally out of focus. Having to carry a tripod in the infield was a royal pain so I came up with this idea - see photos. I went from about 40% keepers to around 80% using this. body.jpg bodystrapmergev2.jpg

    A standard 1/4" eye bolt will fit loosely in the tripod mount hole in the bottom of a camera. The rubber
    washer protects the camera body from being marred and the metal spreads the pressure around. The wing nut holds everything tight. Using a standard pet leash, cut a length and sew in an adjustable connector - shot #1. Adjust to suit your height. When in use put your left foot in the hand loop -#2 - and with light left thumb pressure push up on the camera body. You'll have good freedom of movement right to left and some room to tilt the camera for composition.
    panthercity likes this.
  2. beac83

    beac83 Well-Known Member

    Did that work better than a monopod?
  3. David-imoddavid

    David-imoddavid Well-Known Member

    For me yes. I tried a mono but the leash is much more versatile and not as much equipment to lug around.
    I tried not to have to keep up with any more stuff than I could carry in my pockets.

    It's important not to overly tighten the eye bolt or the wing nut.
  4. Woofentino Pugr

    Woofentino Pugr Well-Known Member

    I tuck my elbows in and rest on my chest. Works great on planes going by at 600mph. Works just as well on bikes. Real big lenses, monopods.

    Is that an old XT or 300D?
    lightning97 likes this.
  5. David-imoddavid

    David-imoddavid Well-Known Member

    The one in the photo is a Canon Digital Rebel I bought in 2005 taken by its replacement - a 30D in about 2006.

    Whatever works to get the shot;)
  6. turbulence

    turbulence Well-Known Member

    cool idea!
  7. Rising

    Rising Well-Known Member

    I did something similar several years ago with a string and washer. It worked okay. I did get a lot of funny looks from others though.
  8. David-imoddavid

    David-imoddavid Well-Known Member

    Yeah. Me too.
  9. Woofentino Pugr

    Woofentino Pugr Well-Known Member

    Still have my Nikon D70 (was looking at the Rebel EOS also since I was switching from 35mm to digital and my old Canon AE1 lenses wouldn't work on the new digital bodies). Went with the D70 over the EOS because the buttons on the EOS were tiny for my fingers. The D70 is now used for my "kayaking camera". Have 2 D300's I use now.
  10. David-imoddavid

    David-imoddavid Well-Known Member

    It would have been nice if Canon had made the digital bodies so that the older film lenses would have worked like Nikon did. I had an AE1 and several lenses back in the day.

    If I buy another body it'll probably be a used 40d.
  11. Woofentino Pugr

    Woofentino Pugr Well-Known Member

    Probably would had got the Canon if they stayed with FD mounts, but the EF mounts came out around 1987-1988. My AE1P is from 1982. Was my grandmas camera that she gave me since I was the only grand kid who was into photography and actually knew how to use it. Hell still have it.

    Got a friend how is an absolute Canon fanboy. He was telling me how Canon L-lenses are better than Nikons because Nikon doesn't have any "pro lenses". Kinda deflated his ego when I told him ALL Nikon lenses are considered "pro lenses". Then again a pro p-tog using a non-L Canon lens (or any other brand) I would still call the lens a "pro lens" since a pro is using it.

    One thing I always say when people ask which is better, Canon or Nikon. You cant go wrong with either one.

    BTW if you go to you can find great deals on used gear. My one D300 was listed as 'bargain' and when I got it, it was in real good shape other than some black wore off in 2 spots. Works great. Got it and the battery grip for $275. What they consider 'bargain', other places would call it 'very good'.
  12. YoshiHNS

    YoshiHNS Mr. Slowly

    If you have the budget to upgrade, the image stabilization you can get on some cameras now is just crazy good. Don't even have to pay for top of the line to get it.
  13. Newsshooter

    Newsshooter Well-Known Member

    Canon changed the mount to make the autofocus work better. A lot of Nikon photographers changed over to Canon during that time as the autofocus as a lot better. And then a lot changed back when Nikon introduced the D4. I don't see how a strap and an eyebolt works better than a monopod. But then again if I'm shooting at the track I'm using a 300 F2.8 or a 500 F4. I can handhold it but it isn't much fun at an all day event.
  14. speedluvn

    speedluvn Man card Issuer

    This was what I was thinking.
  15. Robin172

    Robin172 Well-Known Member

    Less to lug around and it's almost DaveK cheap.
    turbulence likes this.
  16. Newsshooter

    Newsshooter Well-Known Member

    I don't need a strap to help steady me, just tuck in my elbows, and it certainly won't help with a heavier camera and a large telephoto lens. I don't need any extra support it is just a 70-200 2.8 lens. Then it would just be something else to get in the way.
  17. David-imoddavid

    David-imoddavid Well-Known Member

    Then don't try it.
  18. Newsshooter

    Newsshooter Well-Known Member

    I won't, I've been doing this for awhile, I was getting paid to shoot college and pro sports in the 80's when you had to manually focus on a moving subject :)
    David-imoddavid likes this.
  19. studio819

    studio819 Well-Known Member

    300 IS L 2.8 on 1D Mark IV body in hand

    70-200 IS L 2.8, 24-70 L 2.8 and flash in backpack

    Plus laptop, water bottle, and a list of who to watch out for.

    typically on track for 3 days plus. Never used a monopod. Now that was before all the fun this year, but starting next week I can start working out again and hope to be track side for at least doing photos for fun, one more time
  20. SpeedyTide

    SpeedyTide 'Bama's Bad Boy

    Just replying to say "Hi!" Hope you're doing well man! :cool:

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