When it comes to any installation, levelling is crucial in any trade, so it’s essential to own some sort of equipment to do the job. Whether you’re an electrician, plumber, bricklayer, plasterer, or a carpenter like myself, you’ll undoubtedly own a spirit level, but many builders are now trading these for laser levels.
I don’t mean to burst your bubble but, although spirit levels, chalk lines and makeshift string lines will always have their uses, I do believe that laser levels are the future. To shed some light on this, we took the Bosch Professional GLL 3-80 CG Laser Level with Green Laser Technology on site.
The first thing that caught my eye was the fact that the green beam is more visible than a red beam. In fact, it’s proven to have four times the visibility level. Scientifically this is because the colour green is right in the middle of the visible spectrum that we can see with our eye. Although more powerful, it doesn’t need endless supplies of batteries either, running off a small Bosch 12V Li-ion battery, whilst you also have the option to use AA batteries via an additional adaptor.
This Bosch Laser has three windows, which throws out one horizontal and two vertical 360-degree lines. That literally means three times, if not more, work can be carried out from the laser when set in one position. It also has four operating modes, which allow you to have different combinations of laser beams on or off, depending on the task you’re undertaking.
As you’d expect, the device is self-levelling, but it equally has an option to put it into a lock mode. This is perfect for tasks such as installing dado rails on a staircase, where diagonal lines are needed. The range of this laser level is up to 30m with an impressive +/-0.2mm/m accuracy. This range is more than sufficient for most indoor and even outdoor projects. Even though the green beam is four times more visible than a red beam, it can still be difficult to see when the sun is out. The green target plate helps with this to a certain extent, as it enhances the brightness of the laser line.
This where the Bosch Receiver Professional LR 7 comes into action. It’s very simple to use, and is good to go by simply pressing the ‘On’ button and syncing it with the laser level by pressing the receiver button on the laser. Combined, they have a huge range of up to 120m, which should cover practically any job.
All this sounds even better with the audible signal, display LED and the option for fine/rough accuracy settings. It comes with a mount clip, which is usually needed when wanting to use the receiver on a staff. As a carpenter I usually attach it to a straight piece of timber, which effectively does the same job. The slide and click mechanism means the mount clip attaches to the receiver in seconds and there’s a magnet at the top edge of the receiver.
Once all set, because you don’t want to disturb its position, the task of trying to turn the laser off before going for a break can feel like a military operation. The beauty of this Bosch unit is the Bluetooth connectivity which allows you to control its functions remotely via the App on your phone, so you never need to worry about accidently knocking it out of synch.
Additional accessories include a Universal Bracket, which can be mounted to walls using screws or nails, or securely mounted to a magnetic surface through its strong magnet. Alternatively, the bracket can be used as a standalone stand, with the added reassurance of retractable feet that do a great job preventing it from tipping over. The laser level swivels freely once on the bracket and can even be adjusted up and down to the required height with its fine adjustment, and then locked into position. Then you have the Ceiling Clip, which actually slides into the back of the Universal Bracket. The Ceiling Clip is specifically designed to be clamped onto ceiling tracks for when installing suspended ceilings. It even has a height adjustment so, together with the Universal Bracket, it has plenty of movement for when setting out.
Where extra height is required the aluminium Bosch Building Tripod is robust yet light in weight with legs that slide out and lock into place very easily. It has a working height from 55 to 157cm, with additional models of different heights available. I like the attention to detail of this design, particularly the quick release plate that can be attached to the bottom of the laser level. This also swivels, which helps when needing to set the laser level at a certain angle. However, if you’re wanting to position the laser level in a level position it has two vials on the tripod to do so. The feet swivel allows it to adapt to uneven or sloped surfaces. There’s also a pouch with belt attachment and a stackable L-Box that will accommodate not just the laser but also the charger, brackets, target plate and receiver with mounting bracket.
For further information on the Bosch Professional GLL 3-80 CG Laser Level visit bosch-professional.com/pk/en/products/gll-3-80-cg-0601063T00