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Milwaukee REDSTICK Level Gets Put To the Test

Milwaukee REDSTICK levels come in various sizes from 16In to 96In long and the vials are rated for an accuracy of 0.029° when read from either direction, but we are not going to be testing that.  We will let you be the voice of reason, we wanted to see how tough this level really is and if it would take the day to day abuse many levels take on the jobsite without becoming just another straight-edge.

Levels are used by many trades and Masons are by far the toughest on their levels.  The consistent banging from their trowels and being knocked around by bricks and blocks will take a toll on normal levels and they are often times working at extreme heights.   With this we begin our Tool Torture of the Milwaukee REDSTICK Levels.

Drop Test

Many tradesmen work at heights all day long and accidental drops of tools are bound to happen.  One of the worst thing to happen while on the job is to witness the sight of your level freefalling to the ground while your outstretched hand is just not in time. How will your level perform when dropped from 8 Feet and 15 Feet.

Not knowing how the level would take the fall we dropped it horizontally and then vertically from 8 Feet.  When contacting the concrete there was some cosmetic damage.  One of the vial trim pieces came off of the level but it snapped back into place.  The integrity of the level body was intact and did not show signs of bending or bowing.  Knowing that many workers are higher than 8 Feet we decided to double that distance.

With our scissor lift raised to a working height of 16 Feet the REDSTICK level was dropped horizontal and vertical once again.  The results were just like our lower height drop tests, no physical damage to the body of the level and only cosmetic damage that was easily corrected when the vial trim was snapped back into place.  Feeling defeated we decided to increase the intensity of the drops and threw the unit to the ground.  This did not damage the body of the level but did leave some scars on the rails when dropped horizontally.  When dropped vertically the rubber end caps absorbed the shock and did their job in protecting the level.

Tough Test

Milwaukee has added an All-Metal Backbone to the interior of the level making it one of the strongest and most durable frames on the market.  Let’s see how it handles our building block test.

The REDSTICK level was put through 2 tests, the first had the support blocks in close and the weight evenly supported across the top of the level.  This did nothing to the integrity of the level.  The 2nd test had the support blocks moved out to the very end of the level and the weight was concentrated to the middle of the level.  The All-Metal Backbone of the REDSTICK level held up.  There was some bowing of the level during the 2nd test but when the weight was removed the level returned to its original position and remained true.

Weight Test

Having been beaten by the level in the drop test and the weight test we decided to see how durable the Milwaukee REDSTICK really was.  We know that this test would never be done in the real world but hey, that’s half the fun.  What would happen if you forgot your ramps at home when you went to pick up your new golf cart?  Don’t worry, place 2 REDSTICK 48In levels against your trailer and drive it up.

Now that your golf cart is at home safe and sound, let’s see if you can get your new Kubota RTV loaded up.

Well that’s where the limit is drawn.  The REDSTICK levels held the Kubota RTV front tires off the ground but when they rolled over the hand holes the level buckled.  We knew there was a breaking point to these levels.

Milwaukee REDSTICK Level Passes the Test

Although the levels did not hold up to our final test we were very impressed with the way it stood up to our drop tests and the weight test.  The drop test simulated an occurrence that could happen while using the level on a typical jobsite.  Knowing that the level could withstand the abuse and  with the Limited Lifetime Warranty on the performance of the 0.029° vials we agree with Milwaukee’s claim that they came up with the strongest, most durable frame that ensures long-life accuracy of the level.


  • Jon

    April 26, 2017 at 2:54 pm

    You need to include direct links to buy the tools you test. Also listing the price in the review would help. Now I gotta go search your site for the product to potentially buy one.

    • Acme Tools

      April 27, 2017 at 7:28 am

      Hi Jon, Thank you for your comments. We do apologize that we did not include any links in the original post for the Milwaukee REDSTICK Level Tool Torture. A link has been added to the post and again we apologize for this issue.

      Thank you,
      Acme Tools

  • Jeff Rosner

    April 29, 2017 at 6:03 pm

    I was disappointed with the level test as there was no demonstration of remaining accuracy in some of the times between drop tests. My experience with levels is that with each drop they become a little less accurate in some direction. I am an Empire fan myself. My 2 foot level gets replaced the most often as my assistants are more careless with it. I test it against my 6 foot level from time to time. Every few years it suddenly shows up to be slightly off.


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