As shown by my Twitter profile info, I'm a Century Stand lover. I find their match versatility and sturdiness unbeatable.
A couple of months back, I purchased one of those stand from Adorama and been reviewing it ever since.
Solid and heavy
Yes, this C-Stand is solid. It holds a studio light with a large softbox on the end of its boom without a problem. Plus, when you add a sandbag of other counterweight to the other end you really get a sweet setup. I have never had it fall on me but I have seen the boom arm get down a notch if not properly tighten. However, when you lock it down like you should it won't move for days. The tubes are thick and nice and the Chrome finish doesn't appear cheap at all.
Requires a tool to unlock
I just said that you should not shy away from turning the knob on the Grip Head. However, when you do so and leave it to himself for a hours, it's almost as if the stand locks himself down even more, to the point where I can't undo it myself. In fact, I find myself needing a wrench on hand just so I can fix that issue when I want change my setup or stow the stand away. I'm not quite sure if it's the shape of the handle that makes it hard to turn or something else but it's definitely an annoyance.
Something else I have found to worsen a bit from where it was new is the fact that, when the stand is unloaded, the center column can wobbles if you try to make it happen. It have tighten down the three legs but the problem still persists. This is my first C-Stand so I don't know if that kind of movingness is usual but I'm pretty sure I have seen it better before.
Finally, I wish it would be matte black. The thing is, when the stand holds the actual photographed item, it can reflects lots of nasty light onto it. I don't want those reflections. The obvious solution would be to purchase a black stand and that's what I plan on doing.
So, is it a buy or no buy? Well, yes, the stand is one of the cheapest in the market at $130 but I'd go with the black Interfit C-Stand priced at $127 on B&H. However, I don't think you can be that disappointed if you go with Adorama's.