Anyway I've just packed and sent it away for inspection by the insurers and further to that repair or replacement. Before I did I decided to take some photos of the damage just for reference in case there was any dispute about what needed to be done. Here are the shots in all their 'gory detail';
My 500mm f/4E FL ED lens has snapped in two after falling from a tripod set at about five feet high on to a gravel path. It must have hit the ground with some force to do this and I was quite surprised that it had actually broken when I picked it up. When I first looked at it on the ground I thought it was OK.
Here is all the equipment that was damaged except for the tripod. This includes my 500mm lens, Nikon D500 camera body and my Nikon TC14EII teleconverter that was attached at the time. The teleconverter may not have suffered any damage but still needs checking.
This shot shows the damage to the casting on the small piece of the lens as well as the internal electronics.
This view shows the damage to to the internal casting which has snapped in two.
This view shows the ribbon cables and broken internal casting.
My Nikon D500 has been dented on the top where it hit the gravel path. The camera does appear to still be working and there are no visible cracks to the screens or anywhere else. However, with such an expensive precision optical instrument, the slightest internal misalignment will affect the quality of the photographs.
I'm actually hoping that they might replace the damaged gear with new stuff, but I rather think it will be repaired. I just hope it comes back fully working and calibrated and better the new if possible. I have to say that Axa, my insurers, have been very good up to now in getting my gear collected and assessed for repair. I've had to pay £350 excess because I opted for £250 voluntary excess in addition to the £100 compulsory excess as I never normally claim on my insurance. How this time I have, and I am so glad I am covered.