Sunday, 5 May 2013

Lowepro Pro Roller x200 Off-Road Modification


Oversize pneumatic wheels retro fitted to a Lowepro Pro Roller x 200 camera case

Rolling camera bags in my opinion are the must have accessory for any photographer on the move. The manufacturers have done a great job with their designs so long as you work in an urban enviroment.

I am sure that I am not alone in needing a rolling camera bag with larger wheels to cope with the rougher terrain encountered in much of my work. As there does not seem to be a product suited to my needs I have modified my Lowepro Pro Roller x200, featured here in my blog during 2012.

Fortunately, the wheels on modern rolling camera cases are designed to be replaced and are removed with a standard metric allen hex tool.

The modification was quite simple as I had most of the parts laying around my studio, with the exception of left-hand thread studding and nuts, which with a quick search via Google yielded a few options. As you look at the bag from the side that opens, the right wheel bolt has a right-hand thread and the left a left-hand thread. This ensures that the axle bolts do not work loose in operation.


The wheels are from a trolley I use to move heavy equipment cases, which have a larger axle diameter than the axle bolts on the bag. To reduce the diameter I cut lengths of smaller diamter metal tube to create not only an axle but a sleeve bearing lubricated with grease, but if you don't have grease you can always use petroleum jelly aka Vaseline.

Similar wheels are also available from Ebay and are used as jockey wheels on trailers and the like.

Ground clearance has increased, just as well when you see the scuffs to the bag from uneven ground!

The original wheels where left in place to act as a spacer and also so I don't loose the things! An addition spacer is also required to prevent the bigger wheels from chaffing against the bag.



To lock the wheel to the axle I have used two nuts tightened against each other to form a lock nut. I could have used Nyloc nuts, but didn't have any laying about.




The stand is a standard Manfrotto Super Clamp with a length of 16 mm / 5/8th inch steel tube cushioned with rubber grommets. Ultimately these will be replaced with a rubber walking stick tip.

This modification can be removed in minutes returning the bag to urban configuation.

That's all folks and happy snapping;-)

4 comments:

  1. Looking everywhere for a solution, good idea. But when are the company's waking up.

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  2. Could you be i bit more specific about how you mount the wheels to the bag, did you remove the original axle? is the axle one piece or two?

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