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The history of the spirit level

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The spirit level is a simple yet useful tool commonly used in the construction industry, woodworking, and other fields. It is used to accurately align horizontal and vertical surfaces. In this article, we will take a look at the history of spirit level and how it has evolved over the centuries.

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The spirit level in antiquity

Early forms of the spirit level were already known in antiquity. The ancient Egyptians used a simple spirit level to align their structures. The Greeks and Romans also used spirit levels to construct their architectural wonders. Over the years, these simple spirit levels have evolved into the more complex devices we know today.

The spirit level in the Middle Ages

In the Middle Ages, spirit levels were made of wood. These early spirit levels consisted of a long beam with a bubble or vial mounted on it. The bubble floated inside the spirit level and indicated to users whether the surface was horizontally or vertically aligned.

In the 17th century, the spirit level was further developed and improved. Dutch mathematician and geometer Willebrord Snell van Royen designed a spirit level with a V-shaped groove in the middle to increase measurement accuracy. Later in the 18th century, French mathematician Jean-Charles de Borda added a transparent tube to better read the bubble.

The spirit level in the 19th and 20th centuries

The industrialization in the 19th century brought further advancements in the production of spirit levels. New materials such as steel and brass were used to create more durable and precise spirit levels. The introduction of the damped vial design, where the bubble was enclosed in a semi-spherical glass container, improved the accuracy and readability of the spirit levels. In the 20th century, spirit levels were further enhanced. The introduction of the electronic spirit level, also known as the digital spirit level, allowed for precise measurements and easy reading of the results. Laser spirit levels were also introduced, enabling quick and accurate alignment over large distances.

Today, there is a wide variety of spirit levels available on the market, ranging from simple handheld tools to advanced electronic devices. Spirit levels are indispensable tools for any construction or woodworking professional to ensure their work is precise and accurate.

Wasserwaage kaufen The history of spirit level - Buying a spirit level

Overall, the spirit level has undergone significant development and improvement over the centuries. From the simple wooden spirit levels of antiquity to the highly advanced electronic and laser spirit levels of today, the spirit level has become an essential tool in the construction and woodworking industry. It is fascinating to see how such a simple tool has undergone so many enhancements over time. The spirit level will continue to be a crucial part of our toolboxes, helping us perform precise and accurate work.


Are you looking to purchase a specific spirit level or do you have any other questions?

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Do you need spirit levels or other measuring tools?

We are happy to provide you with non-binding and free consultation. Contact us through our contact form or call us at +49(0)868289850.

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