Figuring Out the Right Instruments of Land Survey

Land surveyors use different types of instruments or tools for different type of surveys. Using the wrong one can lead to a complicated report, errors in measurements and data, costly mistakes, and of course a headache at the end of the day. With this, a professional surveyor should know their tools perfectly to avoid hassles in the future. Below is a list of basic equipment used in land surveying that you should know of.

Transits or theodolites

This is used to measure angles of the Earth. Unfortunately, due to the magnetic field of the planet, measuring angles may result in inaccurate calculations; thus, theodolites have been made. This is a high tech equipment that can perfectly read horizontal and vertical angles of the land without any difficulty and errors.


This is a common tool used by surveyors, builders, and contractors to determine the distance between two spots. To use this, two surveyors are needed in order to hold each rod of both ends. There are several types of surveying rods such as level rod, Philadelphia level rod, San Francisco level rod, direct reading rod, direct elevation rod, and target rod.


Just like a camera that needs a balancer to shoot even pictures, survey tools require tripods for measuring evenly. In fact, tripods are one of the most important tools for most surveyors in order to get all measurements accurately.

Electronic/Laser level

As the name suggests, this tool transmits laser beam in either single or rotating beam, which can acquire measurements even up to 1000 feet. It measures, excavates, and grade the deepness of trenches.