Dumpy level is an optical surveying leveling instrument consisting a telescope tube firmly secured in two collars fixed by adjusting screws to the stage by the vertical spindle. The telescope can rotate only in a horizontal plane. Relative elevation of different points of a surveying land is determined with dumpy level.

Dumpy Level

Use of Dumpy Levels in Surveying

 The dumpy level is mainly used in surveying for the following purposes:

  • To determine relative height and distance among different locations of a surveying land.
  • To determine relative distance among different locations of a surveying land.

Advantages of Dumpy Level Survey

  • Simple construction with fewer movable parts.
  • Fewer adjustments to be made.
  • Due to the rigidity of dumpy levels, it retains its two adjustment for a long time.
  • High optical power.

Disadvantages of Dumpy Level Survey

  • Civil Engineers may be find it difficult in making accurate measurements.
  • Difficulty in using.

Parts of Dumpy Levels


  1. Telescope
  2. Eie-Piece
  3. Ray Shade
  4. Objective End
  5. Longitudinal Bubble
  6. Focusing Screws
  1. Foot Screws
  2. Upper parallel Plate
  3. Diaphragm Adjusting Screws
  4. Bubble Tube Adjusting Screws
  5. Transverse Bubble Tube
  6. Foot Plate

How to Use a Dumpy Level for Surveying


  • At first the Dumpy Level instrument is set up on a tripod.

  • Using foot-screws (leveling screws) the Dumpy Level is set to a leveled condition.

  • The operator looks through the eyepiece of the telescope.

  • An assistant holds a tape measure or graduated staff vertical at the point under measurement.

  • The elevations (levels) of different points is gathered with the help of the instrument and staff.

  • Measurement generally starts from a benchmark with known height determined by a previous survey, or an arbitrary point with an assumed height.



Related questions that you can answer after reading the above article:

Tag: dumpy level procedure, dumpy leveling, dumpie level, dumpy level parts description, dumpy level surveying

Related Articles: