By Daniel Watkeys
We're half way through the year and it’s time for some new toys! The clever Swiss techs have been locked away in a small room with a few screwdrivers and an old MS60 and, after some thumping and banging followed by an eerie silence, a souped up MS60 was thrust out the door. So, let’s have a poke at it and see what’s changed and what’s stayed the same.
All the best bits of the old multistation have been retained: It’s still a 1” Total Station measuring to a maximum distance of 10,000m to a prism (how this has been tested I don’t know…) and the Piezo direct drive motorization and ATR plus make the prism tracking smooth and rock-solid.
Where we see improvement is in the new auto-height feature, freeing you from fishing that tape measure out when setting up, and a greatly improved scanning speed. By utilising the speed of the 360⁰ horizontal rotation and a new spiral scan pattern, a maximum scan rate of 30,000 points per second (pps) has been achieved (up from the 1,000 pps in the previous model). It’s important to state that this only applies in some of the new scan methods (either a band of points around the instrument or a full dome scan of the surrounding area) but a full dome scan at 50mm point spacing at 15m will now take you 12 minutes instead of 26 minutes. OK, it’s not an RTC360, but it’s not intended to be. You can though grab a quick scan for a floorplan in around 15 seconds and that’s not to be sniffed at. The scan definitions you can create on the instrument can be stored and repeated as well, making your life easier as you’re taking repeated scans over a period (using the inspect surfaces app perhaps?).
What makes the new MS60 unique is that it retains its identity as a top of the range Total Station while also giving you the extra abilities that enhance what you can do on site. Should you need to pick up a few points, you can sight them through the telescope as you would normally do or use the telescope camera and its 30x zoom for a crystal-clear image instead. If you’re going to need to install your main control grid, layout your first points and maybe do a bit of scanning, then this is the instrument for you.