Tripod stuff

Smokin7s

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Is the hog or pig saddle obsolete?

Can I get into a decent tripod on a budget and spend the main portion of the money on a ball head?

Is group shooting off a tripod more steady than a bipod?

Can somebody point me in the right direction id also some day like to put a set of binos on one.
 

mtruong

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I've got the full Shadowtech setup with the PIG-0311 tripod, Sunwayfoto GNN FB-52 ballhead, and Pig Saddle...basically the best practical/budget setup I could find. It's definitely passable, but the stability isn't the greatest, especially with the Pig Saddle sitting on top of the ballhead. The pig saddle feels much more solid direct mounting to the tripod, but overall the system has a lot left to be desired. The center column of the PIG-0311 has a bit too much play, even cranking everything down as tight as possible. The tripod itself is also a bit too lightweight, and doesn't provide great stability once extended (whether with 2 or 3 extensions).

For the money it's definitely a solid setup, and served me well for a 2-day competition course at Max Ordinate with Tyler Hughes. I also mounted my binos to the tripod on top of a MUB DOS plate, and the stability was great for that.

Having said all that, after trying out the RRS and Cruxord tripods other guys had at the course, I decided to bite the bullet and get a RRS 34L with Anvil-30. Completely different price range, but the stability and capability was night and day different. Bipod is still the most stable since you maximize contact with the ground, but a RRS tripod setup will be really really close (if you have sound fundamentals).
 
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canezach

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Are they obsolete? Not at all. Are they as good as a direct link rifle to tripod system? No, but the Pig Saddle, ballhead, Shadow Tech tripod setup the guy above me described will also cost you as much as the Anvil does alone. I used a Manfrotto tripod and ballhead with the Hog Saddle for years. When I bought my first Feisol, I ran a ballhead and Hog Saddle until I bought a RRS leveling base. I used it in matches at least once or twice a month. It's a perfectly viable system that can be used just as well today as it did then. It won't be as stable as the better tripods with an Anvil or leveling base, but it won't hold you back much either.

With that said, if I were shopping for a tripod right now, I'd look at the RT90C for just under $300 and spend another $300 or so on the direct thread Anvil. You can shoot groups off your tripod, but at least in my experience, my best groups are prone, then tripod prone (you'll see a lot of tripods can get almost as low as bipod prone height), tripod seated, tripod kneeling, and tripod standing, in that order.
 

C.R. Adams

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imo, outside rifles with dedicated ARCA rails, they are very practical and effective method of connecting a rifle to a tripod. I have to rifles with ARCA rails, but have also purchased a pig saddle for my traditional hunting rifles.
 

mtruong

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Are they obsolete? Not at all. Are they as good as a direct link rifle to tripod system? No, but the Pig Saddle, ballhead, Shadow Tech tripod setup the guy above me described will also cost you as much as the Anvil does alone. I used a Manfrotto tripod and ballhead with the Hog Saddle for years. When I bought my first Feisol, I ran a ballhead and Hog Saddle until I bought a RRS leveling base. I used it in matches at least once or twice a month. It's a perfectly viable system that can be used just as well today as it did then. It won't be as stable as the better tripods with an Anvil or leveling base, but it won't hold you back much either.

With that said, if I were shopping for a tripod right now, I'd look at the RT90C for just under $300 and spend another $300 or so on the direct thread Anvil. You can shoot groups off your tripod, but at least in my experience, my best groups are prone, then tripod prone (you'll see a lot of tripods can get almost as low as bipod prone height), tripod seated, tripod kneeling, and tripod standing, in that order.
I would 100% agree with this.
 
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Islas82

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As a person that has recently started shooting from a tripod:

-shadow tech tripod is solid and you just cant beat the price for an“intro” tripod. Really happy with mine.

-are they more steady than a bipod? I think it depends on your shooting position. If its of a bench or prone in my opinion bipod is better.

-I have never had a hog/pig saddle but I feel like a arca clamp is the best way to go.

-if there’s anything I would not budget too much on is the ball-head for sure. Probably wouldn’t spend 300-400 on a “intro” one but dont buy a $20 one either. I got a Desmond Demon for $90 bucks and it handles very well96ACFEF0-69DE-4571-BB4B-04048BCC86F0.jpeg
 
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C.R. Adams

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As a person that has recently started shooting from a tripod:

-shadow tech tripod is solid and you just cant beat the price for an“intro” tripod. Really happy with mine.

-are they more steady than a bipod? I think it depends on your shooting position. If its of a bench or prone in my opinion bipod is better.

-I have never had a hog/pig saddle but I feel like a arca clamp is the best way to go.

-if there’s anything I would not budget too much on is the ball-head for sure. Probably wouldn’t spend 300-400 on a “intro” one but dont buy a $20 one either. I got a Desmond Demon for $90 bucks and it handles very well
I am not suggesting your logic is wrong. I would like to point out that if a ball head in the 300-400 buck rang w/in a person's budget, they are likely to be able to get that money back if they decide to sell and get out.

I have a pig saddle, and two arca setups (an anvil 30 and a more affordable 50mm ball head). The arca setup is definitely more stable. However, the pig saddle is more flexible and can be used for my hunting rifles.
 
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Islas82

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I am not suggesting your logic is wrong. I would like to point out that if a ball head in the 300-400 buck rang w/in a person's budget, they are likely to be able to get that money back if they decide to sell and get out.

I have a pig saddle, and two arca setups (an anvil 30 and a more affordable 50mm ball head). The arca setup is definitely more stable. However, the pig saddle is more flexible and can be used for my hunting rifles.
I agree. If you can afford it get it.
 
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Crews

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I've got the full Shadowtech setup with the PIG-0311 tripod, Sunwayfoto GNN FB-52 ballhead, and Pig Saddle...basically the best practical/budget setup I could find. It's definitely passable, but the stability isn't the greatest, especially with the Pig Saddle sitting on top of the ballhead. The pig saddle feels much more solid direct mounting to the tripod, but overall the system has a lot left to be desired. The center column of the PIG-0311 has a bit too much play, even cranking everything down as tight as possible.
I messed around with this exact budget setup, there’s a few things you can do to squeeze the most out of it. First is remove the center column completely and just direct mount your stuff on the apex. It’s not hard to do with a trip to the hardware store and a little creativity. I am also a fan of skipping the head completely unless you can afford to get a RRS. In my experience, put the saddle directly on the tripod, or if you need more movement go with a tac table and a bag
 

Alex126

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I've got the PIG 0311-G, Sunwayfoto XB-44 and PIG saddle setup similar to the other posts here. Shooting with a sling I can get consistent ~1 MOA groups standing, smaller with lower positions (obviously). I know what I'm missing with RRS in terms of stability, but unless you have unlimited budget for shooting I couldn't justify the expense. Ammo and barrels will yield more results for the money IMO.
 

Badguybuster

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I recently picked up a BOG Deathgrip tripod on ebay for 129. I freaking love it. Very adjustible and stable (so far) and ive tried my AR10, a Rem 700 and my wifes crossbow. All completely locked in and firm
 
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