What’s Philly Rod?

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The Philadelphia rod is a popular leveling rod used by surveyors, made of metal or wood with two sections that can slide to adjust reach. It is used for accurate surveying and can be graded in metric or US measurements. The construction includes a brass sleeve and removable faceplates for maintenance.

A Philadelphia rod is a type of leveling rod used by surveyors. Made of metal or wood, it is made up of two sections each measured in specific gradients. The two sections are arranged side by side and are joined at one point by a small metal sleeve through which the pieces can slide. This allows the Philadelphia barrel to be used at greater or lesser reach, which allows it to be functional over a wide variety of terrain types and over shorter and longer ranges. The ability to extend and retract, which also makes it easy to transport, is why many consider the Philadelphia Rod to be the most popular surveying leveling rod.

Surveying is defined as the visualization, measurement, and proper recording of specific locations so that fixed points can be defined for mapping, precise boundaries created, and a slope reading determined for use in construction. To make an accurate survey, the survey team needs a fixed observation point, a survey grader rod held vertically at a second point, and a reading device, much like a telescope combined with a level, with which the detector can position from the first fixed point to the grader rod.

The construction of a wooden Philadelphia barrel often uses white painted maple with black numbers and gradations. Metal Philadelphia rods are often made of aluminum with stamped gradations and also painted black. It is traditional to have a brass sleeve through which the two sections can slide. In either type of rod construction, extreme heat or cold can cause the metal or wood to expand or contract and can affect the accuracy of the readings.

Philadelphia auctions use both metric and standard US measurement systems. If metric, the rod is graduated in meters and centimeters, with a bold mark at each point of the tenth of a metre. When measured in feet, the Philadelphia rod is graded in 100th foot segments with a bold mark every 10/100th of a foot. The standard Philadelphia barrel has two 10-foot (100-meter) sections and can be used up to a height of 7 feet (2,134 meters).

Philadelphia Auction enhancements include removable graduated faceplates. Prolonged use may wear and blur the numbers and graduations. Removable faceplates can be replaced as needed to keep gradations visible.

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