Levels have come a long way in the last hundred years, and Stanley has been there for the entire ride, making a good product the whole way. One of their latest, the Fatmax Xtreme level features bigger vials and aluminum construction. We admitted to being pretty big fans when it came out, and we still are.
We’ve used ours not only as a straightedge for scribing a line and truing up a surface, but we also clamp it down and use it as a guide fence when crosscutting sheets of plywood. We’ve put it through all manner of abuse, and it still looks like new — not bad for a $50 off-the-shelf piece of gear.
Our Fatmax Extreme level performed so well in the shop, we requested them for our birthday presents last year. Light, comfortable, and easy to read, they display all the hallmarks of a good level as far as we’re concerned. They’re gorgeous to look at as well — chrome and silver is never a bad combo in our book.