Laser Level


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Old 08-21-11, 08:49 PM
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Laser Level

Hi everyone,

I am in the market for a laser level and am looking for some recommendations. I search the forums but they are several years old now so probably not to relevant. I am a diyer and am redoing a bathroom and will be laying tile in several other rooms too. I would like a level that can do tile work, wall work, and of course hang a picture or two with it.
'
Thanks
 
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Old 08-22-11, 04:55 AM
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There are a more than a couple of styles out there, so your choice may be limited. There is the single dot projection, double line projection, and rotating. I use the rotating self leveling type because I have large work sites on occasion. It is also nice for hanging suspended ceilings and other interior work. The PLS is probably going to be your best shot. It produces a horizontal and vertical beam which self levels and plumbs. This is especially helpful if you are laying tile on a wall. Oh, PLS stands for Pacific Laser Systems, and they aren't at the dime store yet. Probably close to $300 for a really good one, but worth it in the long and short run of things. Don't bother with the double dot throwing ones. You'll like the lines much better. Be wary of "used" lasers. The person is selling it for a reason, and that reason could be an accuracy problem or he dropped it.
 
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Old 08-22-11, 07:27 AM
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Laser level for laying tile on a floor? How would that work? I use a 4' level for that.
 
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Old 08-22-11, 07:37 AM
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Originally Posted by mitch17 View Post
Laser level for laying tile on a floor? How would that work? I use a 4' level for that.
Good point - all a laser level will do is identify if your tiles are too high. It won't help you spot where one side is higher than another if both sides are below the line.

And correct me if I'm wrong but isn't the floor being true more important than the floor being level?
 
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Old 08-22-11, 07:49 AM
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chaeberle beat me to it,
Level isn't always what you want. A good 4' level and some really straight pieces of wood to stretch across the floor to judge the highs and lows.

Bud
 
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Old 08-22-11, 07:55 AM
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Thanks for the input. I had some level in the store that were labeled flooring as the automatically found and projected a right angle.

I want to be able to get the straight in the shower wall. I would hate to get that crooked. The wife would not be a happy one lol.
 
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Old 08-22-11, 08:17 AM
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Originally Posted by 727driver View Post
Thanks for the input. I had some level in the store that were labeled flooring as the automatically found and projected a right angle.

I want to be able to get the straight in the shower wall. I would hate to get that crooked. The wife would not be a happy one lol.
You DEFINITELY don't want your shower floor to be level, so you won't be using a perfect right angle from wall to floor in a shower stall anyway.
 
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Old 08-22-11, 11:27 AM
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Yeah, I wasn't clear - my use of a level in laying tile is as a straight edge, I don't look at the bubble.
 
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Old 08-22-11, 01:14 PM
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Depending on what type of shower floor you have you may in fact want it level. Pre-sloped pans are designed to be installed level.

I am a big fan of laser levels but I think a bathroom tile job is a project where they just aren't necessary. A 4'-6' level is all you need to get tiled walls installed right. If the rows of tile stay level and plumb and you have a good eye for spacing (or use spacers) your job will come out fine.

Now if you were hanging cabinets or laying out walls or a deck etc. a laser level is a real work saver.
 
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Old 08-22-11, 01:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Wayne Mitchell View Post
Depending on what type of shower floor you have you may in fact want it level. Pre-sloped pans are designed to be installed level.
Ok good point - but that's the base of the pan that's getting installed level - because the top of the pan is already sloped. If he's up to tiling, then I'd expect the pan to already be in place, would you agree?
 
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Old 08-23-11, 09:31 PM
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Just to clear things up I am using a pre pitch kit to pitch the floor properly for the drain.

I am just curious as what is a good all around laser level. I will tiling a kitchen later this year.

Thanks
 
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Old 08-24-11, 04:31 AM
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PLS.......................................................post#2.
 
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Old 08-24-11, 06:29 AM
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mine is a PLS180. Lasers work nice as an eraseable chalk line. You can turn it on, envision your layout, adjust it as needed, THEN make your first chalk line. PLS180 is nice in that it has a grid setting where you can shoot 2 perpendicular lines at the same time. So you could establish a perfectly square layout by putting it on a tripod and shooting it down toward the floor. Of course, you'd probably want to check it with a tape measure (3:4:5) just to doublecheck the laser's accuracy. They all have some margin of error (+/-). Other than helping you visualize your initial layout (which you would still have to do with a tape measure and chalk line) I also can't see how a laser would give you much of an advantage over a level, other than being a really cool toy.

Just to help you understand the PLS180 laser, You can turn it on, set it to "plumb line" which will shoot a line down the floor, up the wall, on the ceiling and back down most of the wall behind you). You would have to set the laser and align the line on the floor with the end points you would chalk with a chalk line.

If you set it down on the floor and set it to "level line" it will be shooting a level line all the way around the room, but that line will be about 2" above the floor. You would need to measure down from the line to the floor if you were wanting to make a floor "dead on" with floor leveller, or something like that. A self levelling mortar bed is usually what is done to help accomplish that.
 
 

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