Have You a Source for Bubble Levels?

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Ok, I was looking to add some bubble levels to cameras and tripods that didn't have them, hey maybe even my enlargers. I wanted something nice looking that had a waterproof and durable sticky back or maybe velcro. I wanted something that was not going to looking ugly or tacky. Looking in my local photoshops I found some that were 1. ugly 2. flimsy to attache 3. Outrageously overpriced.

I found some cheap $1.00 carpenters levels being sold at a local hardware and found them easy to take apart and scavenge the bubble level. They had four per $1.00 level. However, I'm not sure how to attach them and if they are really good enough. They are also kind of big for the job. Also, I have an old Graflex 4x5 that has a very neat round bubble level attached to the top, glued it think, and I would love to have some of these as long as they aren't $12.00 plus dollars each, but have not seen any like them anywhere.

Has any one got a source for these? Preferrably an internet or mail order source?

Thanks In Advance.

-- Paul van der Hoof (paul.vanderhoof@losangeles.af.mil), April 04, 2002


Edmond Scientific sells them - nice chrome-plated brass in various sizes

-- John Lehman (al7jj@yahoo.com), April 04, 2002.

Anyone have a website or phone no. for this company? Thanks, BILL

-- wm mitchell (mitchell.candy@worldnet.att.net), April 04, 2002.

Check the following website, they have bubble levels of various sizes and forms for very reasonable prices. Do a search for "levels" and check the Bulleyes and Vial Levels page. http://www.mcmaster.com/

-- Georges Pelpel (gpelpel@attbi.com), April 04, 2002.

Paul, Glad you asked that question, I was looking for some of those myself... Steve

-- Steve Clark (agno3@eesc.com), April 04, 2002.


-- Matthew Cordery (cordery@sonic.net), April 04, 2002.

Edmund Scientific Web Site: http://www.edmundoptics.com/index.cfm

-- Ben Hopson (BenHopson@centurytel.net), April 04, 2002.

Go to any RV supply store or dealer and ask for a refrigerator level. They are about one inch in diameter and level in all directions at once by centering a bubble in the center of an etched circle in the center of the dome. Cost about $5. Can be glued on with super glue or screwed on permanently. Works great.

-- Donald Clark (cambocam@yahoo.com), April 05, 2002.

Good hardware stores will sell the little glass vial (that goes into a level) seperately. Usually only a buck or two each.

I use hot glue to glue them to the body of the camera. Just a dab of the clear hot glue (you need a hot glue gun to use hot glue) does the job, and you can always pry it off later if you don't want it there.

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-- Douglas Gould (assistdelrey@earthlink.net), April 05, 2002.

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(was supposed to look like this)

-- Douglas Gould (assistdelrey@earthlink.net), April 05, 2002.

Everybody, thanks for the help. I'll report back when I find the one that works best.


-- Paul van der Hoof (paul.vanderhoof@losangeles.af.mil), April 05, 2002.

OK, here is my report back -- so far. I took the advice of one poster above and went to an RV place and asked for a refrigerator level. They had them, and gave me an extra discount on an already very cheap price for buying a lot of them. The cost -- $2.60 each. Compare that to my local photo store that wants almost $20.00 for something almost identical. These are circular spirit levels about 1 1/4" in diameter. The have a built in flange with three holes for screwing down. The flange makes a bit large, but it was integral and not removable. If you Dremeled the flange down you probably get the diameter to 1". These are a little bit bigger than I had hoped for, but I am still looking up the other suggested sources for smaller ones. Until then, these will prove useful and could be used for a variety of things, such a sticking on my enlarger to help keep things level and square. Adding these to a view camera or tripod will be tricky, but doable.


-- Paul van der Hoof (paul.vanderhoof@losangeles.af.mil), April 07, 2002.

Ace Hardware Stores

-- William Gnech (photobuildings@earthlink.net), April 10, 2002.

I use little key chain levels myself, for 50 cents apiece. A local hardware store sells them. Also, I found that at Glazer's Camera (http://www.glazerscamera.com) they sell replacement levels for Bogen tripods. I forget how much they cost, but they were reasonable.

-- Brian C. Miller (brian.c.miller@gte.net), April 11, 2002.


they have a great selection cheap also

-- Andy morris (andymorris@student.woodward.edu), May 08, 2002.

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