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Electronic levelling tool swaps a bubble for LEDs

Electronic levelling tool swap...
The LumiLevel is presently on Kickstarter
The LumiLevel is presently on Kickstarter
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According to the LumiLevel's creators, it offers a viewing area that's 10 times wider than that of a typical bubble level
According to the LumiLevel's creators, it offers a viewing area that's 10 times wider than that of a typical bubble level
The LumiLevel can be used vertically or horizontally
The LumiLevel can be used vertically or horizontally
The LumiLevel is presently on Kickstarter
The LumiLevel is presently on Kickstarter

Bubble-type levels have been around for hundreds of years, and even digital models with LCD numerical displays aren't exactly new. A group of Montreal-based entrepreneurs have come up with something a little different, though, in the form of the LED-packin' LumiLevel.

Touted as being the world's most accurate level, the tool features a strip of 25 LEDs that illuminate to one side or the other, indicating its vertical or horizontal angle. Initially, each LED represents a slope of 0.2 degrees. Once the device has been approximately levelled, however, the LEDs switch over to each representing one one-hundredth of a degree, allowing for "fine levelling."

According to the LumiLevel's creators, it offers a viewing area that's 10 times wider than that of a typical bubble level. Additionally, its illuminated display allows it to be seen in the dark.

And as an added bonus, if users give the thing a shake, all of the LEDs will temporarily light up, allowing it to be used like a flashlight. Twisting it back and forth, on the other hand, causes it to provide extra guidance by beeping to indicate how close it is to being level.

According to the LumiLevel's creators, it offers a viewing area that's 10 times wider than that of a typical bubble level
According to the LumiLevel's creators, it offers a viewing area that's 10 times wider than that of a typical bubble level

The main body of the tool is made of "high-grade" aluminum with a magnetic edge – that edge is curved in cross-section, so it can be snugged up against pipes without slipping. And while the current version of the tool is powered by four AA batteries, plans call for the production model to have an integrated lithium battery that should be good for months of use between charges.

Other features include metric and imperial rulers along the edges, along with indicators marked underneath the LEDs that let users know when it's at slopes of one-eighth, one-quarter, three-eights or half of an inch.

The LumiLevel is currently the subject of a Kickstarter campaign, where a pledge of CAD$39 (about US$29) is required for a 12-inch (30.5-cm) model, or CAD$49 (US$36) for a 24-incher (61-cm).

Source: Kickstarter

Why? Levels have been around for centuries. They are cheap to make. Very precise. And never run out of batteries. Make from simple and recyclable materials. Now we have product that can fail at any time. Has continuing cost and pollution built in. Bravo
Even though MerlinGuy has a few valid points, I suggest that this particular level appears to offer a level of precision unavailable at this price range. A solidly built high-precision machinist's level will be many times the projected cost of this device. My eight-inch precision level was nearly US$100. I agree about the batteries. If one uses the device rarely, batteries will die just when you need to use it. If one uses the device often, the batteries will die from use, but at least that's practical. The biggest negative I see to this device is that it's offered on Kickstarter. Unfortunately, Kickstarter has become the ideal way to throw money away. Give them money, get nothing in return and no legal recourse.
Brings to mind laser levels that have been with us for about a decade. House construction contractors use them all the time now when doing foundations and such. When it comes to tools there's always someone trying to improve their usefulness. From a small torpedo level, a string line level, or one with a magnet and a circular gauge level that reads the exact pitch. I even have one that you look through a small hole to get a rough reading like a surveyor's preview level. 12 or 24-inch, I use levels all the time, but these people gotta come out with a 48-inch model. The important thing is that it's well-made and practical. A Li-ion Battery with USB charging should do the trick. I love tools!!
I definitely see the advantage of this especially since you can get the fine adjustment. 1 added feature that they missed his memory. You can put the level onto a surface and remember that level and then exactly match it on another surface. I hope they read this and add that to the functionality.
Tom Swift
Finally we can stop relying on our sad, naked, caveman eyeball and a bubble of F-ing air!!!! thanks R&M
Being a carpenter and having gone through a quite a few levels in my career I can say if they have a higher rate of accuracy with each one made I would go for it. I already use a laser level as they don't go bad as often. The problem with bubble levels: Accurate ones are EXPENSIVE, and if you want it to remain so even more cash is needed to get one. If you're paying less than a few hundred dollars then that is a crap level. Just go to home depot and compare entry level levels just to each other, stacking them up, and look how off the bubbles are. You have to go to the contractors desk and ask for real levels that they lock up but even those can have slight variations. If it is easier getting a digital level level and can stay accurate over time then I'd get one. MerlinGuy thinks levels are cheap and accurate but he obviously has never used one in his life. . .
Good point PAV, being digital they could break it out of the pure horizontal / vertical and allow replication of angles. Better yet, add a digital display (small OLED?) were you can pre-set your desired an angle, eg. 60.0. This could then serve the dual purpose of telling you what the currently measure angle is, eg. if you have an existing structure that can't be modified and have to design/create something that fits flush with it.
What about a length of aluminium with a slot for an iPhone? That way, when the aluminium length bends, it can be recycled easily without having to remove the electronics.