Featured Tool – Laser Level

Featured Tool – Self-Leveling Rotary Laser Level
Written by: Kirby Fry
All photos © Elenore Goode 2019

This Bosch laser level is an entry level tool and can be purchased at most Home Depots for $499.00.  It is self levelling, and has a range of 800 feet.  

Who would need one of these tools?  Builders and surveyors. The level has all sorts of applications.  In the field we use it to survey conservation terraces, ponds, and to measure grades or elevation changes on slopes for locating roads and driveways.  On the construction job site we can use the same level for determining the elevations of siding, doors, and windows.

The instruments I’ve used in the past started out as primitive, time consuming, and imprecise. In the US Peace Corps we used a simple A-frame with a plumb bob on it.  Then for years I used a bunyip water level, or clear tubing filled with water attached to 2 yard sticks. My first laser level was a CST Burger rotary laser level but it was not self-leveling. 

During our recent permaculture design course we used all 3 tools – the A-frame, bunyip, and laser level, and gave students the opportunity to experience a wide range of tools used to determine level and measure changes in grades.

Now I use the Bosch Self-Levelling Rotary Laser Level and there’s no going back to the more primitive tools unless I’m in a pinch.  Laser levels can also be rented.

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