The standard setup of a C-stand is to put the longest, largest leg under the arm so the whole thing doesn’t tip over. This is a correct way, but Jay P. Morgan suggests you another one, which will help you maximize the usable length of the arm, and still keep the C-stand stable.
When you set up the C-stand in the “film school” method, it’s stable – but you cut off a significant portion of the arm’s length. When you take away the length of the leg, you only have about 8-10″ of the arm get into the shot. If you’re using a short arm, you don’t even get that much.
Jay suggests turning the legs around, which will extend the usable length of the arm to be almost 20″. If you’re shooting the ground or the subject’s legs, this will be quite useful. Rotate the legs so that they’re placed at a camera angle, and place the arm between the two tallest legs:
Once you’ve rotated the legs and attached a light or a flag, the C-stand may tend to tip over. So, don’t forget to counterbalance the weight and add a sandbag over the tallest leg in the back. With this setup, you should have a balanced and stable C-stand with a maximum length of the arm.
What do you think? Do you use your C-stands like this, or you prefer the traditional method? Tell us in the comments.
[Quick Tip: How to Maximize the Usable Distance of Your C-Stand | The Slanted Lens]