Laser measuring device
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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
    Posts
    49

    Laser measuring device

    I've been building some pipe fence and I've had some issues measuring rail length to fit between posts. Its not bad when I have a helper, but damn near impossible to get right when working solo.

    I've tried heavier tape measures with good standout, but that does not seem to do the trick. It takes several tries to get the tape to span correctly and when it does it has a bow that throws off the measurement. On top of that windy days make it all next to impossible. I know I can use a clamp to hold one end of the tape, but looking for something a little quicker and handier.

    I'm thinking about trying one of these laser measures:

    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Bosch-BL...M-42/301462085

    Most measurements would be between two posts, so measuring about 8 or 10 feet. Occasionally might measure a gate opening so up to 20 to 30 feet.

    Does anybody have any experience with these? Anyone have a favorite or a definite no buy? There seem to be about 1000 to choose from. I've found they have different levels of accuracy (this one calls out 1/16").

    Do these work ok outside in bring sunlight?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Ct
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    2,003

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by biguglydave View Post
    I've been building some pipe fence and I've had some issues measuring rail length to fit between posts. Its not bad when I have a helper, but damn near impossible to get right when working solo.

    I've tried heavier tape measures with good standout, but that does not seem to do the trick. It takes several tries to get the tape to span correctly and when it does it has a bow that throws off the measurement. On top of that windy days make it all next to impossible. I know I can use a clamp to hold one end of the tape, but looking for something a little quicker and handier.

    I'm thinking about trying one of these laser measures:

    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Bosch-BL...M-42/301462085

    Most measurements would be between two posts, so measuring about 8 or 10 feet. Occasionally might measure a gate opening so up to 20 to 30 feet.

    Does anybody have any experience with these? Anyone have a favorite or a definite no buy? There seem to be about 1000 to choose from. I've found they have different levels of accuracy (this one calls out 1/16").

    Do these work ok outside in bring sunlight?
    I've used one of these for years, they are fantastic I bought the Bosch one from home depot years ago, they don't work as well in bright sunlight, you may have to tape a white piece of paper for the laser to reflect off of.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    49

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMan23 View Post
    I've used one of these for years, they are fantastic I bought the Bosch one from home depot years ago, they don't work as well in bright sunlight, you may have to tape a white piece of paper for the laser to reflect off of.
    No idea how lasers really work or any experience with these. For outdoor use, does a stronger unit give better odds for working for a certain distance? For example, does a 135 foot rated unit have a stronger laser and better odds of making a 20’ measurement than a 65 foot unit making the same measurement?


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    Western Washington
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    1,510

    Re: Laser measuring device

    I have used them for years and they work great!!! I have the Leica and it will do 500 feet plus outdoors with very good accuracy, you can go a lot farther if you have a good target for the laser to shine on. Haven't tried the bosch but also have a chinese one and it will do a couple hundred feet no problem.

  5. #5
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    Sep 2005
    Location
    Cave Creek AZ
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    2,662

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMan23 View Post
    I've used one of these for years, they are fantastic I bought the Bosch one from home depot years ago, they don't work as well in bright sunlight, you may have to tape a white piece of paper for the laser to reflect off of.

    Ive used the same and had the same experience. Only thing I will add is that I will generally get a rough measurement with a tape measure. This is because the setup button on the face will allow you to change where you are measuring to on the device (top fave vs bottom face) its about a 3-4" difference, and the setting can be changed by magic while its in your pocket.

  6. #6
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    Sep 2012
    Location
    Utopia,TX / Pasadena, TX
    Posts
    313

    Re: Laser measuring device


  7. #7
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    Jul 2016
    Location
    Roatan island
    Posts
    175

    Re: Laser measuring device

    I understand wanting to purchase a new tool, so I'm not trying to talk you out of a laser.

    I had a need to measure between posts and doing it by myself. As you say, the tape measure is a poor choice. I used a thin steel fishing leader from the local hardware store and put a hook on one end and wound tape around the wire at the distance I needed. This wire was very flexible and wasn't about to stretch with me pulling on the taped end. I clamped a piece of steel to the post that was going to get the hooked end to be my unpaid helper. Worked out well.

    Now for the whole truth. I wanted a laser, but given where I am, that meant a 3 week wait for the ship to bring it to me and I didn't want to wait that long.
    To my knowledge, I own:
    50% of all the plasma cutters,
    33% of all the TIG welders and
    20% of all the MIG welders on the island.

    I own 1 of each.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2011
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    Western Washington
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    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by In Utopia View Post
    These are great and we use them all the time at jobs for bidding and final measuring of concrete/ asphalt patches etc..., however a tenth of a foot is the usual accuracy +/-.1

  9. #9
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    Mar 2018
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    49

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by ronsii View Post
    These are great and we use them all the time at jobs for bidding and final measuring of concrete/ asphalt patches etc..., however a tenth of a foot is the usual accuracy +/-.1
    I can see a use for a measuring wheel like that when bidding jobs, estimating materials etc but I don’t think it’s the accuracy level I need.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  10. #10
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    Jun 2018
    Location
    Florida
    Posts
    262

    Re: Laser measuring device

    ***********************

    CR

  11. #11
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    Jul 2008
    Location
    Long Island
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    2,898

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by CrookedRoads View Post
    There's no way that the magnet on a tape measure will hold a horizontal tape for the lengths the OP needs.

  12. #12
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    Mar 2018
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    49

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by rlitman View Post
    There's no way that the magnet on a tape measure will hold a horizontal tape for the lengths the OP needs.
    But I'm sure it will manage to find every metal particle in the toolbox.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2018
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    49

    Re: Laser measuring device

    The family has been asking for Christmas gift ideas for me, so I added one of these to the list. I'm several weeks away from working on fence again, so timing should be about right. I'll check back after Christmas and report how things work.

  14. #14
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    Mar 2011
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    Western Washington
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    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by biguglydave View Post
    But I'm sure it will manage to find every metal particle in the toolbox.

    Just get a couple packs of wrigleys spearment every time you got fence work. depending on how clean each post is you might get more than one use from each stick.

  15. #15
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    Jun 2018
    Location
    Florida
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    262

    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by rlitman View Post
    There's no way that the magnet on a tape measure will hold a horizontal tape for the lengths the OP needs.
    So what do you think I got nothing better to do than make up phony balony to post here just to irritate some nit wit, have you ever tried one.
    ***********************

    CR

  16. #16
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    Jun 2012
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    Ct
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    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by CrookedRoads View Post
    No way that doesn't get covered in metal shavings if it's anywhere near a metal shop

  17. #17
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    Western Washington
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    Re: Laser measuring device

    Quote Originally Posted by MetalMan23 View Post
    No way that doesn't get covered in metal shavings if it's anywhere near a metal shop
    Works great for holding a nail up a foot taller than you can reach.

  18. #18
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    Oct 2006
    Location
    Illinois
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    Re: Laser measuring device

    Use 10' long 1/2'' conduit cut to size. Hold conduit against post and measure from conduit end to post with tape. As for the 20' to 30', the old time lufkin 50' roll up tape will work. Tie wrap the end to post and pull tight to next one. Isn't there a a phone app for measuring too ??? Not for me, the above is my go too.

  19. #19
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Posts
    976

    Re: Laser measuring device

    We have a Leica laser that does a good job but it's an indoor model. Leica actually invented the type of laser distance measurement models we see today so I expect they are as good as any.

    If you look at the fine print you'll see that 1/16" accuracy is actually +/- 1/16" (total of 1/8") and it's under ideal circumstances - short distances, low light levels and highly reflective target.
    You could have an accuracy +/- an inch under non-ideal circumstances.

    So if you want to use it outside, get a model made to work outside. Expect to pony up a couple of hundreds.

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Kingsville, Md
    Posts
    25

    Re: Laser measuring device

    I don't know if this will really get to production. But the video looks like it could have lots of applications.

    https://www.moasure.com

    Todd
    HH175
    Idealarc 250-250
    Uniweld "J" size O/A
    Victor 315 O/A
    HF 90amp 115v fluxcore (came with the idealarc)

  21. #21
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    2,088

    Re: Laser measuring device

    [QUOTE=biguglydave;8664070]I've been building some pipe fence and I've had some issues measuring rail length to fit between posts. Its not bad when I have a helper, but damn near impossible to get right when working solo.

    I've tried heavier tape measures with g

    Most measurements would be between two posts, so measuring about 8 or 10 feet.

    in the early early aughts, malrboro and cig companies setteled out w/ gov't litigation , for large $, and part of the sum, was given to the pubic schools to spend. so, seemed every public school in my area at the time was takin down there chain link, and replacing it w/ a so called wrought iron/ornamental iron fence. i was in need of work/$ at the time, bush hadnt done 911 yet, so economy was slow. i think myself to be better than fence weld, but it was good part prevailing wage. this fence co, was made up of a bunch of drug addicts, and a couple brains. i think i was a brain. anyway, simple answerr i came up w/, as a tape measure was pretty high tech for these fools. "i chopped up some pieces of light gueage quare tube for 8' centers (minus the dia of the post), and had them lay the piece of sq. tube on ground, and kick the post being cemented against the tube, and put a level on side of post. it worked well, not much could go wrong
    Last edited by 123weld; 12-10-2018 at 01:19 AM.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Posts
    54

    Re: Laser measuring device

    I've seen guys that use 2 pieces of pipe for difficult angles on corners. They cut the saddles one on each pipe end, and use a sliding coupler to stretch the two pieces to length, then weld the coupler. Nobody gonna see most of my corner posts on any of my fences (and I don't give a ratz azz if they do), so I don't care what they look like, just wanna get them done so I can move onto other things. I hate fitting pipe cause I suck at it.

  23. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Posts
    54

    Re: Laser measuring device

    We got a bunch of fence coming up, and I have to look into what size pipe to use for couplers. I've never looked real close at the jobs I've seen done with the couplers. Probably have to use some sorta structural to fit OD on the oilfield pipe, dunno……..but I'll figure it out Or I'll beg Bob to come up North to help me

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