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MikeVila 06-01-2012 03:01 PM

Laser levels for setting up square layout?
Is it possible or do they make laser levels that aid in setting up square layouts for building? Like shoots perpendicular lines and shows exact layout for square?

Daniel Holzman 06-01-2012 03:23 PM

By definition a level is a device that is used to extend a line parallel to the surface of the earth, known as a level line. Many levels can be used to determine if a structure is plumb, since a plumb line is perpendicular to a level line, and many levels are set up so they can be "leveled" in either the horizontal or vertical plane.

What you are looking for is a type of device generically known as a transit. A transit typically is equipped with a graduated scale, and can be used to turn any desired angle. In your case, you want to turn a 90 degree angle. Some levels are equipped with both level capability and transit capability, I have such a level at home. The primary role is to run level lines, however it has a graduated scale that can be used to turn an angle. So the answer to your question is yes, you can turn a 90 degree angle if your level is equipped with a graduated scale like a transit is.

ddawg16 06-01-2012 04:00 PM

Or do it the old fashioned way....tape measure. Measure from each oposite corner....when both are the same's square.

I have a good 2' & 4' level.....but if I really want something plumb (perfectly vertical)....I use the old plumb's about as accurate as you can get.

In the old days when you wanted to make sure a large structure was level...they used a clear hose full of water. You fill it full of water.....hold one end of the hose at one end of your structure...line the water level up with the vert edge.....then see where the other end of the hose water level shows up.

21boat 06-01-2012 07:13 PM


Originally Posted by MikeVila (Post 933962)
Is it possible or do they make laser levels that aid in setting up square layouts for building? Like shoots perpendicular lines and shows exact layout for square?

Whats ironic here is we've had the ability to make a square/right angel from a roman in the roman era

The Magic numbers are 3,4,5, or 6,8,10,
So 3 feet in one direction and 4 feet in the right angle direction from thoses twp points it should measure 5, Or use 6 by 8, equals 10 feet from thoses two points. Its all divisible

3,4,5, 6,8,10, on inches feet yards This will give a Perfect right/Square angel.

oh'mike 06-01-2012 07:49 PM

There are plenty of laser layout tools available--I have several that I use for tile layout--three lines--right -left and straight ahead--

When doing over head piping we used one that also shot a beam straight up as well--

Those tools speed up the layouts--

Millertyme 06-01-2012 08:33 PM

The PLS4 is a good laser. Its self leveling, as most lasers are now. shoots perpendicular, solid lines, nearly over 180 degrees at 100, it also has a self leveling plumb laser.

sixeightten 06-01-2012 08:48 PM

In the last few years, I have become laser lazy. That is when you become so used to having the laser, you will refuse to use a regular level except in an emergency. My favorite uses for the laser are: wall bracing, basement wall plumbing, and checking for level on floors and foundations. I always keep a spare set of batteries to help maintain my laziness.

Davejss 06-01-2012 08:52 PM

Yes. They do make lazers that shoot right angles. Of course there is always the Pythagorean theorem. A squared plus B squared equals C squared.

MikeVila 06-01-2012 11:33 PM

I know and am familiar with the basic ways and theory. Just curious as if to the use of lasers. Answered my questions and concerns. I might have to check into one. I do tiling also so that might be an added benefit. I'm not looking to spend $300 and up. Is there one that does it all for say under $200?

Thx. Mike

GBrackins 06-02-2012 02:03 AM

check this out

Davejss 06-02-2012 05:39 AM

Pacific laser Systems PLS180-TOOL Laser Line, Plumb, Level and Square with Bracket and Case. $269.99

oh'mike 06-02-2012 05:49 AM

Google 'Straightline"--Not sure if the spelling is correct--they make (or used to make?) an inexpensive layout laser---those are the ones I use for tile work--They have served me well and are now over 6 years old--

sevenlol 06-02-2012 03:04 PM

the more expensive they are, usually just means they are accurate for longer distances. the 100-200 dollar variety are usually accurate to 30ft, which for most people is plenty of distance.

the more expensive commercial grade lasers can be accurate to 100 feet or more.

Daniel Holzman 06-02-2012 03:49 PM

I picked up a combination laser level/transit for $75 at Home Depot one day, it was a discontinued model, I figured for $75 why not? It has worked beautifully, it shoots a dot or a line, can be used to align cabinets, project a plumb mark onto the ceiling, and will turn any angle accurate to about 1/2 a degree. I use it to check plumbness of walls when I do the odd forensic examination of a foundation thought to be out of alignment. It was invaluable building my deck, it will shoot at least 100 feet visible in daylight with the special red glasses that came with the unit. Plus it has a rotating laser capability which makes it useful for grading. You may be able to find a similar close out special, maybe check Harbor Freight or Northern Tool.

MikeVila 06-03-2012 12:14 AM

That all is very helpful. I plan on getting a pool soon and will probably rent a Bobcat to level off an area. Probably like a 15 or 18'er. I assume this tool will be very helpful. I then want to build a large deck, pergola area and tie it in. I'm sure it will be worth the purchase.

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