Mainstreaming surveying, layout work

National contractor Walsh Construction bought Trimble Tablets to go paperless while placing concrete for runway expansion at Chicago's O'Hare International Airport. Photos: Joe Nasvik

Digital levels can be extremely accurate across long distances. They gather very precise elevations over long, level routes. Surveyors often use a rod with barcode lines that the level reads to determine elevation. Sometimes the rods used have barcodes instead of numbers, so the instrument reads the barcode to determine elevation.

Especially good for inside buildings or low-light conditions where the laser beam can easily be seen, small laser level systems establish level automatically and provide colored laser beams to help users lay out level, plumb, and square. Add a remote sensor to lock on the beam in bright light or outside conditions, and you also can easily plot points accurately up to about 100 feet. Inexpensive compared to other instruments, they're used for laying out floor tile, ceiling panels, or smaller forming applications.

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