The Losmandy Porta-Jib takes approximately 10-20 minutes to set up and can be done by one person, but for safety we recommend two people.
We will start by setting up the spider dolly. Remove the dolly base from the case and slightly loosen all the screws.
Unscrew the 2 screws that allow the legs to fold out completely and move them out to the 3 leg position. Reinstall these 2 screws, tighten down all the screws and flip the whole thing over.
Install the wheels into the end of the tube and use the screw down feet to attach securely. Do this for all 3 wheels.
Remove the ground feet off the tripod and raise the tripod approximately 50cm. Place the tripod onto the spider dolly and secure using the rubber fasteners on the feet.
Extend the turnbuckle to its maximum length and hook it into the eye bolt on the spider dolly base. Raise the legs up on the tripod so that they take up slack on the cable. Ensure the tripod is level using the bubble level located in the top of the tripod. Once level, tighten down the leg locks at the top of the tripod.
Once the slack is taken out of the cable you can then tighten down the turnbuckle. This is a safety cable that prevents the tripod coming off the spider dolly.
Remove the main centre assembly and drop it into the top of the tripod, aligning the bolts up with the cutouts in the side. Twist the assembly slightly to lock it in and tighten down the 3 bolts using the Allen key.
To level the main assembly loosen off the 3 top brass screws. Adjust the 3 bottom screws using the bubble level.
From this point on you need to be careful not to make the jib too heavy on one side otherwise it will tip over. Make sure you build both sides up at the same time.
Remove the steel weight bar and the weight bar locking screw from the case. The weight bar locking screw is longer than the rest of the other 3 screws and has coloured tape on it to help make it easy to identify. When you look at the weight bar you will see that one end has a thread on the inside, while the other end is smooth. Install the smooth end through the level lock bar and insert it into the back of the main assembly. Use the screw to lock down through the hole in the top.
Now raise the bar up so it is horizontal and move the level lock toward the main assembly. Leaving a 50-60cm gap, which is about the width of 3 fingers, tighten down the clamp onto the bar. Make sure it is fastened tightly as this part shouldn’t move when the jib is being used. Now tighten the level lock to hold the jib in its horizontal position.
Remove the extension tube, tube clamp and pin from the case. Slide the tube clamp over the end of the main tube and slot the tube onto the front of the main assembly. Install the pin and then tighten down the clamp, ensuring you keep the clamp handle on the top of the jib so it doesn't get pinched during use.
Remove the leveling bar from the case. The leveling bar can be identified by the knurled end that screws in and out to extend the tube. Using one of the 3 small locking screws, attach the leveling bar to the jib, making sure that the head of the locking screw is oriented out to the side of the jib.
Next, take out the sliding counterweight and slide it onto the weight bar. Position it as close as possible to the main assembly. Now install the weight bar onto the back using the vector weight bar to secure it in place. Then fit the threaded safety cap on the end.
At this point you can install the tube extension if required using the same clamp and pin method. Please note that using the extension reduces the payload of the jib to 20kg.
Now remove the front assembly, tube clamp, tube pin and locking screw from the case. Slide the tube clamp onto the main tube and slot the front assembly on, securing with a tube pin and then tightening down the clamp. The leveling bar can then be installed onto the front assembly and secured with a locking screw.
You now need to check everything is level for a final time, so loosen off the tube clamps and rotate the front assembly so that the bubble is in line with the jib arm, then re-tighten the clamps. Loosen the locking screw on the leveling rod and lengthen the rod by rotating the knurled end until the bubble is in the center.
The next step is to balance the jib. Sit the large case up on its end to use as a work platform and then rest the arm of the jib on it. Attach your fluid head and camera to the jib, along with any accessories that will be used on the camera. Carefully release the level lock and ensure the camera is safe resting on the case. Now you can begin putting weights on the weight bar, starting with the biggest weights.
While attaching the weights, make sure you support each weight while it’s being fitted and only release slowly so you can feel if it is going to lift the jib up. If the jib arm begins to lift, switch down to the next size weight. Continue adding weights until the smallest weight causes the arm to lift up. Now secure the weights in place by attaching the 2 locking screws.
Loosen the sliding balance weight and slowly slide the weight back until it reaches the point that the jib lifts but holds its position vertically. Lock the weight off and the jib is now balanced.
An optional step is to adjust the vector weight of the jib which will hold its position better when raised or lowered. Position the jib at a 45 degree angle and you will likely feel that it naturally wants to drift back to it’s horizontal position. You can counteract this by shifting some of the weights to the vector weight bar. Set the jib arm back down onto the case and shift some of the weights from the side weight arm up onto the vector weight bar. Do not exceed 30% of the weight on this bar. Lock everything off and then move the jib to 45 degrees again and check it holds its position.
If you wish to learn more about the Losmandy Porta-Jib or you have a question that wasn't answered, please let us know.