With the humidity, hand oil, dirt, dust and other grime that gets on my tripod from bouncing around the car and outdoor photo shoots, I sometimes find that the legs start to stick when I pull them out. There are times when the tripod legs need to fall out quickly to get that last minute sunset, just before the sun falls below the horizon. That’s not the time to be fighting with sticky tripod tubes.
For years, I have been using “No Wax, No Buildup” furniture spray on my extension ladder legs to keep them sliding easily and thought I would try it on my tripod. It seems to work as well there. Spray it on a rag and wipe it on the sliding part of the exposed tubes, move it back and forth and you’re done. And you get that lemony fresh smell also!
If you worry about the appearance of your gear, it can leave some dark fingerprints on smooth black tubes if you transfer some with your hands.
I don’t recommend any particular brand, but only have experience with one.
Do you have any other suggestions? Please add them to the comments so we can have some other ideas to choose from.