Twist-Locks vs Flip-Locks

cornfedkiller

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Trying to decide between two tripods, both with nearly identical specs but one has twist-locks and the other has flip-locks on the legs.

I have been using flip locks for the last couple years and have never tried a good quality tripod that has twist locks. I don't mind the flips other than they are a little bulkier on the bottom of the legs when I'm taking my tripod out of my bag or putting it in.

Most of the stuff I see online are photographers and not hunters, so not sure if one works better than the other for hunting.

Do you guys a preference? It seems the majority of higher end tripods have twist locks, so I assume that more people tend to prefer that?
 

LaHunter

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I have the twist locks on my Promaster tripod. They have worked fine for me over the past 6-7 years and I have no plans to change. Flip locks may be a little quicker to adjust, but they may be a little more prone to snagging while getting out of your pack.
 

CorbLand

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I like flip locks. Easier to use, less maintenance and seem to last longer.


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Maverick1

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I have tried both and slightly prefer the flip locks. There are +/- to each. Not a real strong preference either way, but one of the reasons I prefer the flip locks is that I find it easier to lock down the height and get it exactly where I want it to be with the flip locks. With the twist locks sometimes it takes a couple of tries to get the height of the tripod in the "right" position. Again, not a big deal. As noted above, the twist locks go in and out of the backpack a little bit easier and snag on less in doing so.
 
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cornfedkiller

cornfedkiller

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one of the reasons I prefer the flip locks is that I find it easier to lock down the height and get it exactly where I want it to be with the flip locks. With the twist locks sometimes it takes a couple of tries to get the height of the tripod in the "right" position.
That was my concern, but since I've never used twist locks, I wasn't sure if it was an issue.
 

passinggas33

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I would say from my experience that flip locks are generally faster to set up and easier to find tune heights. But I personally think they feel a little flimsy and for that reason I like the twist locks. I also prefer the twist for putting in my pack. They don’t seem to get stuck on as much. I think ultimately it comes down to personal preference. If I could find a company that makes flip locks not feel flimsy I would do it. For now I’ll stick with my slik twist locks.
 

Walking Birds

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I've only messed with twist locks in the store, but from playing around, I'm glad I've got flips. I strap my tripod to the outside of my pack, so snagging really isn't an issue, and I like that I can quickly fine tune my leg lengths when I change position. That's also why I use a ball head, so in the case where I can't adjust my legs, the ballhead can still keep my optics level
 

tdot

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I have both. Like both. There are definite pros/cons to each. But they ultimately are pretty minor and you'll likely end up liking what ever you choose.

If I had to choose, it would be twist locks. They slide easier in/out of a pack, grab all 4 knobs and open in one motion, so setup is faster. Fine tune adjustment is a little slower, especially if it's a leg further from me and I'm sitting.
 
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cornfedkiller

cornfedkiller

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@tdot , @passinggas33 , let me ask you twist-lock guys a more specific question -

When I sit down to glass, I pull my tripod out, hold it about the height I want it, flip the lock and the leg falls to the ground and then I flip the lock closed - repeat for two more legs and I'm done.

Does that same technique work with twist locks? Hold the tripod about where I want it, give the nut a 1/4 turn, leg drops to the ground and I tighten the nut back up?
 

passinggas33

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That’s pretty much how I do it. Just not as easy to do as with the flip locks. And sometimes I’m unlocking the wrong section or trying to lock it, if that makes sense. It’s just easier to see which sections are unlocked or locked with flip locks. Just more convenient in that regard.
 

Trial153

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@tdot , @passinggas33 , let me ask you twist-lock guys a more specific question -

When I sit down to glass, I pull my tripod out, hold it about the height I want it, flip the lock and the leg falls to the ground and then I flip the lock closed - repeat for two more legs and I'm done.

Does that same technique work with twist locks? Hold the tripod about where I want it, give the nut a 1/4 turn, leg drops to the ground and I tighten the nut back up?
You will get a handle on your starting hight so you starting from zero each time. Each leg has more then one twist lock so you can’t just hold and drop.
For example me, sitting , slik 624. I will almost always have the top, upper two most sections fully extended. That is my starting point, at that point I make one adjustment to outermost leg till it’s set, then I adjust the two legs nearest me. After that it’s all post and head.

One thing I have happens on some cheaper flip locks years ago was the nut would fall off the post that pins the flip....you shit out of luck if you loose it. A better designed tripod that wouldn’t happen.
 
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cornfedkiller

cornfedkiller

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You will get a handle on your starting hight so you starting from zero each time. Each leg has more then one twist lock so you can’t just hold and drop.
For example me, sitting , slik 624. I will almost always have the top, upper two most sections fully extended. That is my starting point, at that point I make one adjustment to outermost leg till it’s set, then I adjust the two legs nearest me. After that it’s all post and head.
Yeah I guess I should've specified a little.. if I'm sitting on a hillside and my front leg will have to be longer than the others, I typically let the second lock open first, let that leg section fall completely and lock the flipper, then open the top flipper and let the leg fall the rest of the way to the ground. The closer two legs usually just need the one leg section extended.

Basically I'm wondering if I ever have to take my hand off the nut or if I can just loosen it, let the leg fall, then tighten it. If that is how it works, I guess I don't see why that takes any more time/effort over a flip lock - but maybe I'm overlooking something, which is why I'm asking.
 

tdot

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@tdot , @passinggas33 , let me ask you twist-lock guys a more specific question -

When I sit down to glass, I pull my tripod out, hold it about the height I want it, flip the lock and the leg falls to the ground and then I flip the lock closed - repeat for two more legs and I'm done.

Does that same technique work with twist locks? Hold the tripod about where I want it, give the nut a 1/4 turn, leg drops to the ground and I tighten the nut back up?
I generally have a reasonable idea of where I want my legs. So by the time I'm sitting down, the number of leg sections I want are already extended and everything is locked except the section closest to the head. I final adjust where I want the scope, while seated, and then lock the top leg section.

I have removed the center section of my tripods, I dont like the instability they add. If I do my final adjustment in the leg section closest to the tripod head, it's easier then reaching to the base of the tripod.
 

tdot

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Basically I'm wondering if I ever have to take my hand off the nut or if I can just loosen it, let the leg fall, then tighten it. If that is how it works, I guess I don't see why that takes any more time/effort over a flip lock - but maybe I'm overlooking something, which is why I'm asking.
That's exactly how it can work. Probably the biggest thing to get used to with the twist lock is that there isnt an easy visual indication the leg is open.
 

Napperm4

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Yeah I guess I should've specified a little.. if I'm sitting on a hillside and my front leg will have to be longer than the others, I typically let the second lock open first, let that leg section fall completely and lock the flipper, then open the top flipper and let the leg fall the rest of the way to the ground. The closer two legs usually just need the one leg section extended.

Basically I'm wondering if I ever have to take my hand off the nut or if I can just loosen it, let the leg fall, then tighten it. If that is how it works, I guess I don't see why that takes any more time/effort over a flip lock - but maybe I'm overlooking something, which is why I'm asking.
That’s pretty much exactly how it works. For standing I just crack all 4 nuts and let the legs drop then tighten the nuts.

Sitting I’ll guess how many full sections I need for the downhill leg, max out the stiffest section then drop the last section. Drop the back 2 legs and done. It’s quick, a little bit finicky compared to flip locks for fine tuning.
 
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cornfedkiller

cornfedkiller

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It’s quick, a little bit finicky compared to flip locks for fine tuning.
I see this as the number one complaint about twist locks, but I'm having a hard time understanding what is more finicky about them.

If I need to adjust the height of one leg by a half inch, what's the difference between a flip lock and twist lock?
 

Napperm4

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I see this as the number one complaint about twist locks, but I'm having a hard time understanding what is more finicky about them.

If I need to adjust the height of one leg by a half inch, what's the difference between a flip lock and twist lock?
It’s harder to operate the twist lock with one hand on it while the other is the weight of your tripod so it stays where you’re trying to lock it. It’s pretty simple if you only undo the twist lock e ouch to get movement.

With a flip lock I can hold the tripod at height with one hand and use my hand to hold the extension steady while my thumb flips the lock.

Personal preference and I haven’t found the flip locks on my trekking poles to be reliable. Lastly the twist locks are more streamlined so that’s what I use. Got rid of my flip lock tripods. Might take me a fraction of a second longer to set up the twist lock tripod now, but there was a learning curve getting it perfect the first few times.
 

TheCougar

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I’ve had both. I pretty much agree with everything said so far. I’ll add one thing - I have trouble getting and keeping all my twist locks tight. Because there is no visual indication, sometimes I’ll put the tripod down and a leg will start to collapse, or during a glassing session one of the twist locks will loosen just enough to let a leg start sliding. I am careful not to over-tighten the twists, so perhaps the latter issue is my own doing.
 

Whisky

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Much prefer flip. Quicker and easier for me. But you're right, we are in the minority.
 
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