31 Dec Pistols At Dawn
Some years ago, the pistol grip was a popular thing. You saw them on a lot of things; umbrellas, stick shifts, and .44 Army Colts amongst other things. They also appeared on photographic ball heads.
The idea was that the pistol grip would make it easier to point a camera and lens on the ball head for action shots. You saw advertisements for these grips with long birding or sports lenses. We sold several varieties – I remember them from Italian and Japanese makers. They may still be made.
There is a new head in the Stirling Street shop that is along these lines – but with a very important improvement. It is all to do with ergonomics.
The Vanguard Alta GH-100 hs a lot of the same features as the older rivals; adjustable grip angle, centralised weight over the tripod, quick release plate, etc. But it scores a new point with an improved ergonomic feature – the release mechanism no longer involves opening your hand to open the lock. You can keep a very firm grip on the whole structure while releasing it with your thumb.
Try it yourself with your own revolver. See if you are more confident when opening your fingers or when holding them tight. Check out whether you can thumb back the hammer confidently. That is what the Vanguard does – it lets you use the thumb as the operating lever. All the rest is very well built and convenient also but it’s that thumb action that really makes this a success.
Final note for the year: Cameras can autofocus even if you have been drinking. You can’t – so stay off the road tonight if you imbibe. And there’ll be more posts in this column in the Happy New Year.