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3 28558 12/5/2006
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100% of reviewers $236.67
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(From company literature) Kirk BH-3 Ball Head. Kirk Enterprises now offers compact precision ball head designed for a lifetime of trouble-free performance. Featuring the same efficiency and rugged construction that have made the Kirk BH-1 ball head an industry standard, the BH-3 features our Satisfaction Guarantee and Five-year Warranty--the best in the industry. And they're made right in Angola, Indiana.

Weighing only 19 ounces (compared to 30 ounces for the BH-1), this ball head features the same silky smooth ball-and-socket action as its big brother. You have fast aiming and framing control just by releasing and locking a single knob. Two smaller knobs control the 360-degree panning base and the amount of ball friction. Both the BH-1 and BH-3 feature our new quick-release platforms with a built-in spirit level that accept all Arca-style plates and mounts. To avoid corrosion, all external components are crafted from tough 6061-T aircraft aluminum including the solid, captive-design knobs, and the internal metal parts are stainless steel and brass. The ballcup is a self-lubricating Delrin composite, and the tripod socket accepts 3/8-inch thread. This could be the last compact ball head you ever need to buy!

Price includes a special universal Arca-style quick release body/lens plate, so you can immediately upgrade to quick-release convenience.


  • Full-size sure-grip knobs (same size as our BH-1) for easy control, even while wearing gloves!
  • Weighs just 19 ounces!
  • Constructed of aluminum, brass, and stainless steel for rugged dependability and light weight.
  • Five-year warranty.
  • New sleeker design with safety stop grooves and built-in spirit level.


  • Pan: 360 degrees with positive lock
  • Tilt: 45 and 90 degrees
  • Quick Release: Yes
  • Height: 102mm / 4 in.
  • Base Diameter: 61mm / 2.4 in.
  • Ball Diameter: 42mm / 1.65 in.
  • Tripod Mount: 3/8"-16
  • Maximum Load Capacity: ?
  • Weight: 540g / 1.19 lbs
  • MSRP: $US255

Keywords: Kirk Ballhead Quick-Release


Registered: December 2006
Posts: 3
Kirk BH-3 Ball Head review by mrtim
Review Date: 12/5/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $250.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: excellent build and quality, relatively inexpensive
Cons: none yet

This is one of the least expensive pro level ballheads. I use it frequently with a Nikon DSLR and 70-200VR lens, with no slipping problems at all.

I also recommend the kirk L bracket to match your camera. If you have the Nikon 70-200, then Kirk's custom made tripod foot for this lens is also a splendid addition.

Registered: November 2006
Posts: 18
Kirk BH-3 Ball Head review by colourperfect_co_uk
Review Date: 11/21/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $200.00| Rating: 9 

Pros: light weight, strong, compact
Cons: not much

Use mine for a D200 and 70-200VR and am very pleased. Much better than the Gitzo head with cork, yes cork top plate.

Have it mounted on a Gitzo Carbon Fibre tripod.

The quick release system is excellent and I am planning on buying the D200 bracket for better potrait mode images. This is a generic issue with ball heads rather than a problem with the BH-3.

I value its compactness and am pleased I didnt go for the larger BH-1. Build quality is excellent.


Registered: November 2006
Posts: 14
Kirk BH-3 Ball Head review by OldRedFox
Review Date: 11/20/2006 Would you recommend the product? Yes | Total Spent: $260.00| Rating: 10 

Pros: Solid, stable, easy to use
Cons: In use, none

For a Nikon D50/80-200 2.8 combo, this is perfect. It is easy to use, rugged, strong and does not droop - even with 30 minute exposures. If your load is more than that, look at the BH-1, but this is lighter and works just as well with moderate loads. Another thing, with Kirk you get a generic plate while with Markins or RRS the plate is an additional $50 (or more). Get the Kirk - when you do get an customized plate for your camera body, use the generic on your tele lenses.


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