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fastone371
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Table Leveling - 11-26-2014, 09:58 AM

I have a Starrett 98-12 machinists level, its a 12" long machinists level. When I move it to different spots on my table it may be a !/2 bubble off here or 1 bubble off at the maximum over there, when you guys set up a table do you get every spot on the table perfectly level with a machinists level???
(not sure how I got 2 pictures in there but you get the idea)
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11-26-2014, 05:27 PM

No there never perfect. That measurement may or may not be okay depending on where you have the level.


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11-26-2014, 05:35 PM

Someone recently said the slates are machined to .005" and the Starrett was accurate to .0005" so it's silly to use such a fine piece of equipment
  
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11-26-2014, 07:41 PM

According to the Starrett web site, each mark on the vial corresponds to a slope of .005" per foot. That is an incredibly gentle slope (about 1/40th of a degree). I had the same questions regarding how level was level enough when I was checking my table with a Starrett level and I think I have now convinced myself that being out of level by less than one mark on the vial is probably acceptable.

Last edited by tjohnson; 11-26-2014 at 07:48 PM.
  
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11-26-2014, 08:03 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by fastone371 View Post
I have a Starrett 98-12 machinists level, its a 12" long machinists level. When I move it to different spots on my table it may be a !/2 bubble off here or 1 bubble off at the maximum over there, when you guys set up a table do you get every spot on the table perfectly level with a machinists level???
(not sure how I got 2 pictures in there but you get the idea)
The bubble of your level is warm, making it bigger than normal so to speak, so level for the most part is to within one line in either direction from dead center.
  
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11-26-2014, 08:07 PM

And try not touching the glass when moving the level around, the bubble will seek out warmth, just to show you what I mean, place your finger on the low reading side of the od the glass for a few seconds and see if the bubble don't take off down hill towards your finger, meaning the bubble is heat sensitive.
  
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11-26-2014, 08:19 PM

Put a small piece of tape on the table and place one end of the level up to it.
Turn the level end for end. Check the level again. Sometimes the level is off.
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11-27-2014, 09:58 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ralph Kramden View Post
Put a small piece of tape on the table and place one end of the level up to it.
Turn the level end for end. Check the level again. Sometimes the level is off.
.
Thanks Ralph. I always check the accuracy of my levels by taking a reading then turning 180 degrees in the same spot to make sure I get the same reading. That is what the calibration procedure is on my digital Smart Level.
  
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11-30-2014, 05:01 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by tjohnson View Post
According to the Starrett web site, each mark on the vial corresponds to a slope of .005" per foot.
And according to the Empire web site, some of their "carpenter's" levels are accurate to a slope of .0042" per foot. The carpenter's level is claimed to be at least as accurate as the machinist's level.

BCA Specs for slate:" The playing surface must be capable, either by its own strength or a combination of its strength and that of the table baseframe, of maintaining an overall flatness within a tolerance of .020" lengthwise and .010" across the width...If more than one slab is employed, the slab joints must be in the same plane within .005" after leveling and shimming."

If one takes the spec as stated, and not "a tolerance of +/-.020"...), then for an 8' (88"-90" playing length) table, .0027" per foot would be OK even if all tilts were in the same direction (the worst case).

So according to the BCA (and WPA) spec, one full line off on the Starrett (.0050"), repeated all the way along or across the table, means you are almost twice as bad as the spec. Things are usually more confusing than that, and things tend to average out somewhat.

I suspect an excellent table would measure half-a-line or less on a Starrett placed anywhere on the table in any direction. That would mean that even in the worst case, it meets the BCA/WPA spec, and almost certainly is much better.
  
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Post - 11-30-2014, 08:31 PM

A Starrett model 98 is much more accurate than a carpenters level, empire carpenter levels might be flattened to tight specs but the glass vial that shows reading is much different type of vial than what a machinist level has..

I've had table owners tell me their tables are level but still roll off.. I'll set the Starrett level on the table and the bubble is way off center, I'll show the table owner the readings and then they will say the table shows it's level in all directions with their four foot masons level....

A Starrett 98 is a must when levling slates. Getting the slates to stay level is a different story'





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Quote:
Originally Posted by derangedhermit View Post
And according to the Empire web site, some of their "carpenter's" levels are accurate to a slope of .0042" per foot. The carpenter's level is claimed to be at least as accurate as the machinist's level.

BCA Specs for slate:" The playing surface must be capable, either by its own strength or a combination of its strength and that of the table baseframe, of maintaining an overall flatness within a tolerance of .020" lengthwise and .010" across the width...If more than one slab is employed, the slab joints must be in the same plane within .005" after leveling and shimming."

If one takes the spec as stated, and not "a tolerance of +/-.020"...), then for an 8' (88"-90" playing length) table, .0027" per foot would be OK even if all tilts were in the same direction (the worst case).

So according to the BCA (and WPA) spec, one full line off on the Starrett (.0050"), repeated all the way along or across the table, means you are almost twice as bad as the spec. Things are usually more confusing than that, and things tend to average out somewhat.

I suspect an excellent table would measure half-a-line or less on a Starrett placed anywhere on the table in any direction. That would mean that even in the worst case, it meets the BCA/WPA spec, and almost certainly is much better.
  
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12-01-2014, 11:52 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by derangedhermit View Post
And according to the Empire web site, some of their "carpenter's" levels are accurate to a slope of .0042" per foot. The carpenter's level is claimed to be at least as accurate as the machinist's level.

BCA Specs for slate:" The playing surface must be capable, either by its own strength or a combination of its strength and that of the table baseframe, of maintaining an overall flatness within a tolerance of .020" lengthwise and .010" across the width...If more than one slab is employed, the slab joints must be in the same plane within .005" after leveling and shimming."

If one takes the spec as stated, and not "a tolerance of +/-.020"...), then for an 8' (88"-90" playing length) table, .0027" per foot would be OK even if all tilts were in the same direction (the worst case).

So according to the BCA (and WPA) spec, one full line off on the Starrett (.0050"), repeated all the way along or across the table, means you are almost twice as bad as the spec. Things are usually more confusing than that, and things tend to average out somewhat.

I suspect an excellent table would measure half-a-line or less on a Starrett placed anywhere on the table in any direction. That would mean that even in the worst case, it meets the BCA/WPA spec, and almost certainly is much better.
A .003"-.004" thick piece of paper moves my bubble 2 lines the opposite direction when placed under the low side of my level if I remember correctly. I would have to double check to be sure, but I was very surprised how small of an increment 1 line is on a machinists level.
  
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