One important tip to care for and maintain your instruments is to stay current on all software upgrades. As with other technology that utilizes software, survey tool upgrades are pushed out several times a year to fix bugs and improve overall performance. Staying current on the latest version will help ensure everything is working properly and running smoothly.
It’s also important to care for each instrument according to its specific needs and requirements:
THEODOLITES AND TOTAL STATIONS
Care should be taken to lift the equipment out of the case with both hands on the micrometer knob standard and base (on older models) or by the carrying handle with one hand and the other hand supporting the base. If it’s necessary to move the equipment by hand on a job site, keep it vertical and well-supported; however, in most cases, it should be re-cased before moving to a different location.
The care and maintenance of EDM devices are very simple: keep them clean and keep them dry. Although they are water-resistant, remove them from their cases and allow them to dry out thoroughly after they have been exposed to moisture and rain. Like other instruments, they should not be stored in excessive heat — doing so can cause the components to deteriorate and the readings to become erratic and inaccurate. Don’t store them in the vehicle on hot days, and give them a few minutes inside their cases to acclimate to drastic changes in temperature when taking them out of an air-conditioned vehicle into the hot sun. Never point them directly at the sun — the sun’s rays can cause irreparable harm to the interior parts.
- Avoid storing them in damp conditions.
- Be careful not to overwind them; it can cause stretching and stress points.
- Keep them clean with soap and water after normal use and dry them thoroughly before storing them.
- You can clean rust with fine steel wool and a cleaning solvent; however, it’s better to avoid rust altogether by oiling them lightly after cleaning and allowing them to dry before putting them away.
Avoid over-tightening the tripod fastener screw, as it can damage the leveling plate. Extra care is needed when transporting the tribrachs. Because they are a necessary part of your precision equipment, each piece should be secured separately in containers or compartments to protect the optical plummet eyepiece, base surface, and bullseye level
Your tripod is essential for accurate, precise measurements of angles, and as such, it needs to be stable and level without loose joints. Tighten the leg screws just enough for each leg to bear its own weight, but never tighten so much as to risk stripping the screws or damaging the surrounding wood. You can protect the wood from the elements by keeping it varnished or painted at all times. Keep the top cap on when not in use, and make sure the tripod shoes are free of dirt or other debris before storing.
Regularly check the bullseye bubble to make sure it is centered, both transversely and along line-of-sight. Protect the compensator from hangup by taking care not to bounce or spin the pendulum levels, seeing that the level is free of dust, and checking that the bullseye is where it needs to be. If the compensator seems to be hanging up, don’t try to fix it yourself in the field — send it in to be professionally repaired.
Keep them clean and dry, removing any dust, dirt, or debris after use and making sure they are completely dry before putting them away. Be careful to only touch the graduated faces when necessary and keep them from coming into contact with any other tools or objects that may damage them. Regularly inspect the screws and hardware and check the accuracy of the rod by fully extending it and checking its scale with your tape. It is recommended that you check the accuracy when you begin control level surveys.