Starrett 97 vs 98

AndySomogyi

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Just won this 12” Starrett level on eBay, and I’m not sure if it’s a 97 or 98. I understand the 97 doesn’t have a graduated vial, only have two marks, and only the 98 has the graduated vial.

I’m pretty sure you can replace a 97 with a 98 vial (only about $25). And yeah, I know the side vial is missing that’s only about $5.

I have some very long parts I need to machine on my mill, and going to use this to level them so the end rests on a satellite table. I know the 98 is accurate to 0.005 per foot, which is plenty accurate for my application.




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T Bredehoft

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My 97 has only two marks, and they are about 3/4 in apart. Yours looks like a No. 98. good score.
 

AndySomogyi

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It showed up today, cleaned off a bit of rust, and seems clean. But it’s very strange though. I measured how much the bubble moves, and it’s about 0.001 per mark, this comes out to about 18 arc seconds. From what I understand, that’s much finer than the model 98 sold today.

Also, the side vials are held in place with little screws, and not plugs like in the diagram for the 98.

Also, I was cleaning it off, and used some alcohol, and the wrinkle paint started getting all sticky. That’s very strange because all my newer Starrett instruments don’t mind alcohol at all.

So what level did I just buy???

Any idea how old this is?














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AndySomogyi

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Did some more digging, and looks like the vial was replaced at some point. It was just held in with foam sponge, and not the correct plaster of Paris.

The end cap was not tight at all, came undone with just finger pressure.

Because of how accurate this is, could the vial have been replaced with a model 199 vial???




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