How To Repair a Tripod Leg

A broken tripod leg is a bad thing, but it doesn't have to ruin your shoot. If you can't get another tripod right away, you can apply a couple of quick repairs to keep your shoot going. These quick fixes are especially important when you're shooting in a location where getting another tripod is not an option.

Gaffers Tape

Gaffers tape is something that every photographer should have in their kit because it proves to be so useful. If the lock for the retractable leg is broken, just tear off a long strip and wrap it on the leg where it meets the lock. The extra girth created by the tape will prevent the leg from sliding up. When doing this, make sure you make a tab at the end so that you can peel the tape off quickly. This will allow you to keep working, unless you run out of tape.

Screw It in Place

Depending on how intense your shoot is, you might keep a drill gun in your kit. A broken tripod leg means that after the shoot is over, this tripod is trash. Since most are made out of light weight aluminum, you can drill a couple of screws into the broken leg to keep it from collapsing. Just be conservative when you do this because too many holes can easily make the leg break apart.

Wedge It

If it's just you, your camera and the tripod in the middle of the wilderness, then there are two quick fixes to keep you working. One is to use tree bark to wedge the leg from retracting. This will be time consuming, though, as most pieces are going to be either too thick or too thin to help.

You can also use thick leafs to try and help wedge the leg in place. The leafs will be more durable than the bark, and you could double them up to get the desired thickness. Tying a thick piece of grass to the leg is a quick solution, but it won't last that long.

If the Leg Breaks Off

If the leg outright snaps off, then you can improvise with some rope. Take a pipe, or a thick stick if you're out in the wilderness. Place it next to the remain part of the leg, and attach it in place with three clove hitches.

If the tripod breaks, get a new one as soon as possible. These solutions will help you in a jam, but they are not permanent fixes.

Popular Tripods: