When I first started surveying we chained in everything. When we set a property corner we doubled our angles (how many remember that?), we would chain miles of curb and utilities, up hill, down hill, through curve deflections, through brushed line, it was quite a thing. We would then drop back and grade everything with a level. The funny thing is that a 3 man crew got it all done a lot faster and more acurate than the button pushing drones of modern day and we could visually see a bust and we all were running numbers in our heads always checking each other.
The plumb bob was the most important thing. Used for anything from its actual use, to a back scratcher, a hammer, a toy to punch holes in things (lots of broken tips), a paint can puncher explode and run device, something to stick in a power pole, a pry tool, a digger, an accidental foot poker, cactus remover, this list goes on.
Remember leaving it in the truck and the party chief reaming your ass for about an hour after you did a full bore wind sprint to get it??
Also remember the best way to get the broken tip out? Simply set it in the back of the truck out of the scabberd and it would work its way out.
As a lot of things the plumb bob is kind of a dead technology unless you are a good concrete guy or mason.
There is something that made a man tough when you had the ill tempered 225 pound crew chief leaning on the front of that chain yelling at you to hold steady.
As a skinny kid I learned real fast how to use my body as leverage and hold my own. I've always kind of had the gift of balance but that was a whole different thing.
I used to watch these big guys get pulled off of their feet because they thought chaining was all about strength. It rarely happend to me because I understand leverage.
While a thing of the past the plumb bob will always have a special place in my heart. It was like an appendage. You never left the truck without it.
I used mine on a site the other day. I found a monument that landed under a tree. I set 2 nails +/- 90 degrees from each other a 2 taped in the rebar which was in a hole. It hit pretty good. Within Board standards anyway.
This is a little blast from the past. I think a new surveyor should have to spend 6 months kicking old school in order to fully realize what they are doing. This process could eliminate a lot of future head up ass and that saying "well the data collector says it".