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I know this is not in your selection above but I have been very pleased with my Irwin(s). They have withstood the beating and if they get dropped the vials are adjustable so you can return them to true.

Having said that my next levels will be Stabilas. They look easy to read, very durable (I'm told), and warranty is tough to beat. Although not many have said they have returned them due to being inaccurate.

My co-worker has returned his Empires a couple times due to the vials being out of whack.

If Stabila was not in the cards I would not hesitate to purchase Irwin again. They are still great.
 

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I would not buy the Empire. I have a couple older Johnson levels, and they are very good. I bought a Bostitch level last year, and so far so good.
 

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I have a set of Empire's I'm selling only b/c I upgraded to Stabila's. The Empire's provided good service for the last 4+ years but they're not German so out they go ;)
 

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I'm leaning toward getting these from Amazon...

image-2047687728.jpg

What about the Bostitch levels they sell at Big Blue? They seem to be a little cheaper than Stabilas, but not enough to sway a decision, in my mind. They do have a bunch of lengths though.
 

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Hack
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I'm leaning toward getting these from Amazon...

What about the Bostitch levels they sell at Big Blue? They seem to be a little cheaper than Stabilas, but not enough to sway a decision, in my mind. They do have a bunch of lengths though.
I think if you're going to go with Stabila, spend a few extra bucks and get this style... still the same warranty, but a bit better quality.
 

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asevereid said:
I think if you're going to go with Stabila, spend a few extra bucks and get this style... still the same warranty, but a bit better quality.
I think I started a thread on this a ways back, and people said its a stabila so it's just as good.

There can't be that much more of a difference, right? It must be marginal at best?
 

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I have both types of stabilas. The cheaper ones are smaller and lighter which is nice, but the ends aren't removable, which I like to do from time to time, and no hand holes. But a terrific value for the set.

I just made a box to send my 78" back, one of the plumb vials is out.
 

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Renaissance Man
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Go with Stabila if you can - I love the Mason set,...can't wait to get the Jamber kit next.

Dead nuts on the money they are :thumbup:
 

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I have returned three Stabilas over the last ten years.
The rep didn't want to replace them, saying that they were within tolerance.
My response to him was, if I wanted levels that were within tolerance, I would have bought cheap ones.
They replaced them. :thumbsup:
 

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Hair Splitter
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Masterforce all the way! I have a pair of Empire, not bad level, just hate the bevel on the straight edge. Makes marking a biatch.

The Masterforce are Stabila levels at a cheaper price. I picked up three of them last year when they were buy one get two half off. So I got the 48, 24 and 18 for less than a 48 Stabilla.
 

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I know this is not in your selection above but I have been very pleased with my Irwin(s). They have withstood the beating and if they get dropped the vials are adjustable so you can return them to true.

Having said that my next levels will be Stabilas. They look easy to read, very durable (I'm told), and warranty is tough to beat. Although not many have said they have returned them due to being inaccurate.

My co-worker has returned his Empires a couple times due to the vials being out of whack.

If Stabila was not in the cards I would not hesitate to purchase Irwin again. They are still great.
I agree.the Irwin is a great level,now if i just could remember what gutter i left it in..:sad:
 

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I have a pair of Empire, not bad level, just hate the bevel on the straight edge. Makes marking a biatch.
So true. When my co-worker pulls his out and I use it to mark something out, I am always second guessing my line.
 

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Hack
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I think I started a thread on this a ways back, and people said its a stabila so it's just as good.

There can't be that much more of a difference, right? It must be marginal at best?
I was trying to find something to back up my point about Stabila's in particular...but came up flat.
All I could find was something that pertains to all levels. I guess if one needs an all purpose level it's really a matter of personal discretion, but there are a few differences in build quality, and that's all I was trying to get at. My recommendation for the more expensive Stabila levels is just a personal preference.
Here's a pic showing the difference in level development:
 

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don't get the cheap stabilas. I have them they are ok but not the same as the heavy duty ones. We got a new 4' R Beam, at first i didn't like it cause the one plumb bubble is in the middle. It is really growing on me now.
 
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