Modified Peak Design ARCA Plate

My favorite ARCA plate is the one designed by Peak Design, because they are the most flexible:

  • I can use them on both PD and Black Rapid straps (as well as with PD Capture Pro Clips and any ARCA clamps)
  • And, unlike other ARCA plates, PD plates work in both directions (slide in from the left/right or front/back). This is especially important if you are moving from a left/right PD Capture Clip mounted vertically on a shoulder strap to one horizontally mounted to a PD Pro Pad on your belt.

But first, the Standard plate.

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Standard Plate

When the camera will primarily be hanging on a sling strap, I prefer the Standard plate (which is more rounded and comes with their straps and some of their other gear) and one of the PD Slides depending on the camera. (The new Pro Plate also has these rounded corners.) In case I do need to use a Black Rapid strap, I replaced the standard screw with a Pro Drive Screw.

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I like the Standard plate with straps because I don’t get bumped and bruised by the outside edges of the ARCA Plate.

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ARCA Plate

When I know that I will be using a Capture Pro Clip, I prefer the ARCA Plate (which comes with a Pro Drive Screw) because the anchors are not connected to the ARCA rails at the corners and are more centered between the rails and therefore don’t get in the way of the clips/clamps as easily.

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The only reason I don’t keep this on at all times is because the sharper outside edges of the ARCA Plate are unpleasant to bump into on a thin mirrorless camera (but not an issue on larger DSLRs).

Moreover, the ARCA Plate has sharper edges on its loops which wear out the Anchor connectors faster.

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I use trimmed heat shrink tubing to protect the Anchor connectors.

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Slice a tube to length, slice open and slide over the sharp edges. After the plate is mounted to a camera, the camera should further limit movement.

DSLRs

The loops are wide (compared to the standard plate) so it could take wide hand strap straps with just enough room for a sling strap Anchor to boot. This was how I had my DSLRs before Peak Design came out with their Clutch hand strap which uses the same Anchors as their sling straps.

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And now the wider loop accommodates two anchors for a total of 3 (one for a PD Clutch and two for a sling strap).

Plus, since the bottom of a DSLR is deeper, the sharp edges of the back loop is less exposed so less of an issue.

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(The hand scrap is connected to the battery grip in the photo, but this same plate is also used without the battery grip hence the 3 anchors – one for the hand strap and two for the sling strap.)

FYI Peak Design has discontinued the ARCA Plate in favor of their new plate which has connectors on the rails like their standard plate, but they are still selling them until they are out and you can find them on Amazon and eBay, too.


 

No, this isn’t the project that I hinted to earlier. This is just an old mod that I thought I would document for you.


 

Sorry that I didn’t put all the links to the products above – I noticed over the years that Peak Design tends to change the URLs to their products every few months so my bookmarks no longer work.

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