Published on September 5th, 2019 | by Alison Barclay0
Ask Neil: Chicken Lips.
Many of the messages we get about tripod issues have a simple solution, and these are mostly to do with Chicken Lips. So, I thought I’d write an easy troubleshooting guide to help you fix some of the basic issues you might experience if you get a problem with your tripod.
Bwark, What’s a Chicken Lip?
Inside the leg sections of our tripods and monopods there are plastic shims which we call Chicken Lips.
The Chicken Lip sits along the internal key line on the inside of the leg to stop the legs or spinning or extending too far. Here’s a guide to the 3 most common issues resulting from a Chicken Lip gone rogue and how to fix them yourself.
“My Leg is Falling Out”
If your leg section has fallen out, then the Chicken Lip has come off the top of that leg and is no longer acting as a stopper.
Solution – Take the leg section that keeps falling out off of the tripod and have a look down the leg to see if you can see the missing Chicken Lip. If this is stuck, you might need to use something long and pointy to get it out, alternatively a good shake sometimes does it. You will also need to take off the lock from the leg it has come out of.
Now you have your Chicken Lip back, first slide the lock back onto the removed leg and then clip the Lip back into place matching the holes on the leg with the circles on the Lip.
Once you have done this, the slightly fiddly bit starts. You’ll need to find the key line inside the leg and match this up with the lose leg section. While holding the Chicken Lip in place, you can then start to twist the leg around to get it to slide back in.
When you’re happy that leg is back in place, screw the lock back on and you are good to go!
“My Leg is Stuck/Stiff”
If you’re finding the leg a bit tough to retract and extend (and the locks are completely unlocked) then the Chicken Lip may have slipped and be causing an obstruction.
Solution– The solution here would be the same as above but depending on how stuck the leg is you may have to give it a bit of a tug. Also flipping the Chicken Lip over surprisingly works!
“My Leg is Spinning/Rotating”
No one wants a part of your leg to start rotating when you’re setting up that perfect shot. If you find that happening, then your Chicken Lip is no longer lined up with the internal key line.
Solution– A quick fix is to spin the leg section affected until the Chicken Lip lines back up with the key line and “clicks” into place. Unfortunately the quick fix may not last though. We will need to send you a replacement Chicken Lip as your current one has worn down. If you lose or break a Chicken Lip you’ll need a replacement. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org with the model of your tripod or monopod and which leg section it’s come from – and I’ll send you a free replacement Chicken Lip.
You can watch a video guide of the process here (models may vary slightly): How to replace your Chicken Lips!