Rotating from Landscape to Portrait mode

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Rotating from Landscape to Portrait mode

Post by alt-az-builder » Fri Sep 29, 2017 7:53 pm

The Hitch Hiker's payload platform includes a mechanism for rotating a camera from landscape (horizontal) mode to portrait (vertical) mode. The most remarkable feature of this rotation device is that for typical DSLR cameras, the two-axis balance of the load will be only very slightly affected by the rotation -- if it's affected at all. This feature is demonstrated in a video on our website.

To perform the rotation, simply loosen the black rotation locking lever about a quarter turn -- rotate the camera -- then re-lock the lever. Here are a couple of details to note. One should only open the locking lever about a quarter turn to (at most) half turn. If opened excessively, the small-pattern nut that secures the locking lever could be lost. There is absolutely no need to ever open the lever more than half a turn -- and usually a quarter turn is sufficient.

Also, note that the locking lever position is adjustable. Just pull the lever outward a little, and its angle can be changed.

To provide for better stability over the tripod with the camera in the portrait mode, I always retract the payload platform after rotating the camera. This is not absolutely necessary because the camera does not swing outward very far when rotating to portrait mode -- but I like to be conservative. Also, the structure will feel more rigid with the payload platform retracted when using portrait mode.

It's best not to open the quick-plate clamp when in portrait mode. If you find it necessary to adjust the balance of your camera or remove your camera from the mount, the best practice is to first rotate the clamp back to landscape mode.


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