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Disto Laser Measuring

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Jeff Horton

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Alabama
I broke down and bought a Disto Classic a few weeks ago. Just thought I would add my experience to the board for anyone thinking of buying one.

I have measured 6 or 7 house with it. I did three yesterday I think. I have used it just enough to feel comfortable now and I really like it. I have not picked up my tape measure since I got it. Yesterday I had one measurement I would have used the tape on if I had it with me. I had to lean out over a balcony to reach the corner of a wall and shoot back to the wall behind me. I was scared of dropping the Disto to be honest. Wrist strap would have been nice. That is the first time I have wanted the tape since I started using the Disto.

I don't like gutters. There great targets to shoot to but you need a measurement from the gutter to the corner of the house to add to your Disto Measurement. There is scale on the back of the Disto but it is only5 inches. Someone suggested copying a tape measure in the copy machine. Then trim and tape the copy to the back of the clipboard. I think this is a great idea and I am going to do that. I think that would solve that problem.

Sometimes I find I loose the red dot and have to start with it at my feet or on the wall and follow the dot out. The more you use it the easier it gets. This is just part of the learning to me.

I think the spotting scope is over priced but it would be great on long shots, behind bushes and in tight spots. I am thinking of buying one but I may try the red glasses first because of price of the scope.

STICK NOTES!! Handier than a shirt pocket. Stick one on the corner, walk to the other end and there is your target. Would not do an inspection without them. I don’t use that many on the job but when you need them…..

I love the add and subtract function. (I bought the Disto Classic) I find I use is all the time. I measured a house yesterday that was crazy shaped with lots of additions and bump outs. Two or three times the answer to what seemed a really hard measurement was to take two easy measurements and add or subtact one from the other.

Triangulation method is very straightforward to use. I have played on my house and find that I can be within a couple of inches of the actual measurement hand holding the Disto. If I mount it on my camera tripod I am within a fraction of an inch. I don’t se me using this much except on a second story of house.

Interior measurements are where the Disto really shines. Its so simple and so fast. No doubt you can measure interiors in half the time with the Disto!!

My overall I give it B+. Its pricey and it’s not perfect for our work but I personally love mine and would not go back to a tape measure.
 

Farm Gal

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Nebraska
:lol:
Great...
just great...
Thanks a lot, Jeff...


I had just convinced myself (not hard sell - I balance the exchequer)
AND hubby (tough sell on the veto motion)
that we didn't need this toy quite yet,
there are other toys needing bought first -
like a new desk for meee!!
(one corner leaning and held by old appriasal books :oops: :roll:

and you gotta go and blow my logic right outta the water.

Thanks for your honest review, but since I can't erase your post
would you at least edit it to a slightly less golden rosy glow??? :lol: :lol:

Pu-leeeze? I'm begging here!
 

Jeff Horton

Thread Starter
Senior Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Alabama
FOR LEE ANNS EYES ONLY

I really hate it Lee Ann. I was paid to make those comments! :wink:

Now go buy you a decent desk. There is nothing wrong with your tape, It works lovely. I moved my office and bought me a new corner unit for my computer and all the printers, scanner, etc. I would rather have the desk than the Disto. HONESTLY! Basics first. Disto is a luxury.

Feel better?? GOOD!

Now start putting a little bit of money back for the Disto each week AFTER you get your new desk.
 

Tim Hicks (Texas)

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 15, 2002
Professional Status
Certified Residential Appraiser
State
Texas
I don't agree. The Disto is nice, but it is simply quicker to measure a long straight wall with a tape than to find a target, add for a gutter (3,4.6 inches), or what if the gutter is a foot away from the edge? You can't measure from that edge because there is not enough room. then add the width of the gutter? The add funtion is nice, but then you have to add variables for different targets and that is not as acurate as a tight tape. If you have daylight and a 60 foot wall, you will not see the red dot or target. I can measure that wall with a tape quicker than putting on a scope or a different pair of glasses. Oh the triangulation method does work, but I can measure that wall in less time than it takes to do the triangulation steps and what if you are in bright sunlight? Why waste time drag a tape, it is quicker. I bought the Disto. I use it 75% of the time. i bought it to decrease my measuring time. I am lightning fast with a tape measure and my speed is relatively the same with of without it. It is great inside and for measuring a messy garage. The Disto is a helpful tool, but I don't think it is the reliable enough to throw away a tape measure. One disclaimer. I measure to the nearest tenth like ansi states and because I believe in accuracy and professional measurements. I think it is lazy to anything else. Of course, I am in the minority because I will not give the Disto the glowing review it deserves. The bottom line: It is a nice tool, but don't expect it to solve all your problems.
 

Anthony Blackburn

Sophomore Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2002
I've been using a Disto for a few months now and am getting reasonably proficient with it.

Speed? No comparison to a tape. A tape is like a jalopy and the Disto is like an Acura NSX

I find the carrying pouch to be a handy carrier for my IPAQ, on which I have Bradford and Robbins "Clicknotes". I stick it in while the disto is out measuring.

Now I just have to figure out the sketch program on the IPAQ.
 

Farm Gal

Elite Member
Joined
Jan 14, 2002
Professional Status
Licensed Appraiser
State
Nebraska
Anthony:

Please keep us advised of your progress with the sketch program.... I personaly fell like it is goingto be a big timesaver for me, but what I'd REALLY like to see is a paper twin system where I would write the numbers on a piece of paper and have the program copy and close the actual sketch!

I have such good luck with technology you know :wink:
 

Anthony Blackburn

Sophomore Member
Joined
Oct 9, 2002
My ultimate goal is the paperless appraisal.

with a Palm or PocketPC based OS on a handheld....

Using Clicknotes, a handheld sketch program, the Disto, and a camera attachment for my handheld, there would be no use for a clip board.

Currently, on my IPAQ, I have a camera attachment that takes reasonable pics, so I have all the components, with the exception of the sketch program. I've been unable to master it, as the manual is highly technical, and I need more of a step-by-step, plain english manual.
Bradford and Robbins has graciously offered to come into my office and train me and my staff on how to get the most out of all the programs they offer and support, so I'm hoping that will give me the boost I need.
 
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