Vol. 4 - No. 8

 crash.jpg (412553 bytes)


We recently sold a tripod to a customer and within two weeks of receiving it he needed some replacement parts.   Upon inquiry we learned he found the ground was too hard to screw in the ground stake so he decided not to anchor the tripod.  It blew over and caused some damage to the tripod.

We have covered this topic several times before in our newsletters but since the country is going through a sever drought and vast areas of ground are baked like concrete we thought it might be time for a reminder of alternate methods to anchor the tripod.

The easiest method to anchor the tripod on a hard surface, including actual concrete, is using a ballast weight.  We have found that a common 5 gallon plastic pail works very well.   These are readily available at most hardware stores, lumber yards, even paint stores. Walmart and similar stores also often have them available.  If possible, also purchase the correct lid.  When empty, these pails weigh next to nothing and make great storage containers.  When filled with 5 gallons of water they weigh about 44 pounds - plenty of ballast for a tripod.  Simply position the filled pail under the tripod as in the photo below.  Then attach one hook of the bungee cord to the tripod's eyebolt hook and wrap as many loops as necessary around the pail's handle to provide the correct tension when attaching the other end of the bungee to the hook (as shown below).  The cover on the pail will keep the water clean and prevent evaporation.  Don't try to suspend the pail off the ground, just keep plenty of tension on the bungee cord.

Anchor5.jpg (361434 bytes)

Another method of anchoring the tripod uses two 12" galvanized spikes, driven into the ground, to create an anchor.  This method is great in high wind situations as it provides a very solid anchor in hard earth conditions.  Just follow the steps below - -

Anchor4.jpg (361245 bytes)

Drive one spike into the ground at a 45 degree angle, leaving about 2" exposed.

Anchor3.jpg (381723 bytes)

Place the ring of the Ground Screw Stake over the spike, as above.

Anchor2.jpg (391308 bytes)

Drive the second spike into the ground and through the ring at an opposing 45 degree angle, leaving about 2" exposed.

Anchor1.jpg (362826 bytes)


Attach the bungee cord for a firm anchor, as above.  Use the claw of the hammer to pull out each spike when ready to move on.  These spikes are readily available at most hardware stores and lumber yards.

A little prevention now will save a lot of headaches later.