Spirit levels come in many sizes, from 600mm to 2000mm long, but most bricklayers tend to favour a 900mm or 1200mm level. If it is any bigger it can become rather unwieldy to use, particularly in a confined work area. Often, a spirit level will be used in conjunction with a longer straight-edge, in order to transfer levels across distances that exceed the length of the spirit level.
Shorter levels of around 300mm long are available for small levelling work such as individual bricks within a decorative feature or for plumbing up soldier bricks or bricks laid on edge (for example, for a coping on top of a boundary wall). These are commonly referred to as ‘boat levels’, as traditional versions resembled the plan shape of a boat.
Fig. 65 Boat level.