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Thread: A nice protractor level?

  1. #11

    Join Date
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    My vote is still for the miniature of Hennessy cognac. If theres nothing worth shooting, at least you can enjoy a nip in the woods
    I steal time at 1/125th of a second, so I don't consider my photography to be Fine Art as much as it is petty larceny.

  2. #12
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    What about those circular levels I used to see. Are they still available. do they work?
    Drew Bedo
    www.quietlightphoto.com


    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  3. #13

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    Yeah they do, probably not super accurate but enough to get both standards within a degree. That's what I have now, cost $10 or so 20 years ago. The digital protractors are probably the way to go considering they'd be a lot easier to see, I can't glance at the fine hash marks and tell very quickly.

  4. #14
    8x10, 4x5, ..., Tessina
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    Dec 2010
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    Maryland, USA
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    Yep, the circular levels are still available.

    McMaster-Carr has a couple of different sizes, inexpensive, and Made in America.

    I have the 3" and 4" versions. They're not as well damped as I would like.

    - Leigh

  5. #15

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    Feb 2012
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    Not to derail this train but regarding those iPhone and Android apps: How accurate are those?

  6. #16

    Join Date
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    Quote Originally Posted by Old-N-Feeble View Post
    Not to derail this train but regarding those iPhone and Android apps: How accurate are those?
    Great, until the effing battery dies.
    One man's Mede is another man's Persian.

  7. #17
    joseph
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    Re: A nice protractor level?

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I like Handy Level for iPhone.

    It's accurate to about a tenth of a degree, although the numbers run on into the hundredths.
    In the picture here, I'm allowing for the tilt on the iPhone holder (I've set it up to be a viewfinder on my P&S, so it's accounting for parallax)

    Also takes a handy reference picture via screen capture, and since it's free, it sends me personal messages inviting my to try new and different things.

    Probably a small price to pay for the trouble of keeping my phone charged-

  8. #18
    Drew Wiley
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    SF Bay area, CA
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    7,342

    Re: A nice protractor level?

    You get what you pay for. Don't expect anything accurate cheap, esp circular bubble levels or anything sold in Home Cheapo kinds of places. Many consumer products are never tested for anything resembling accuracy in the first place. Even for a task as simple
    as choosing an ordinary carpentry of try square I recommend that each of my customers
    has at least on true machinist-quality square in their shop to check their other squares
    before use - you'd be amazed at how many "squares" aren't square at all. Checking levels
    is a little easier because you can reverse them on a flat surface. But I personally keep a
    Starrett machinist level as a reference (it's just a little too finicky and accurate for actual
    view camera use). For critical copystand use I have an adjustable level mount on the
    camera itself, which I then fine-tune to match a machinists level, then put that away.
    Just depends how fussy you need to be. Squaring a camera back to match an architectural
    shot of a building sometimes comes out odd when you discover the building isn't square or
    level to the foundation itself!

  9. #19

    Join Date
    Jun 2002
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    9,296

    Re: A nice protractor level?

    Quote Originally Posted by Drew Wiley View Post
    Squaring a camera back to match an architectural shot of a building sometimes comes out odd when you discover the building isn't square or level to the foundation itself!
    Yes especially older homes....

  10. #20

    Join Date
    Jan 2007
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    242

    Re: A nice protractor level?

    For architectural or landscape work the mitutoyo is an essential piece of gear for me. I'm oftentimes swinging or tilting the camera and using f-stops that don't allow much wiggle room for user error. Getting your standards aligned within a tenth of a degree makes for critical sharpness across the frame.

    I recently used this tool to verify a substandard CLA on my Sinar P2. Turned out the Sinar-trained tech did not set the zero detents properly resulting in a 1.5 degree deviation from parallel - enough to throw a horizon line from a 5x7 out of focus at f16. When I confronted him about this he had a difficult time believing there was a problem and an even more difficult time believing I could measure the amount of deviation. So I shot a video demonstrating the deviation by using the mitutoyo digital protractor. That changed his tune pretty quick.

    The Mitutoyo is about the same length and depth as a leica M and approx. 2-1/2" tall. Similar build quality as well. Also nice is the ability to manually recalibrate and set the zero point.

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