Simple M2 tripod base setup

Hello folks,

I would like to share my simple DIY cheap M2 base setup for tripod use.

I have been using this receiver for quite a few months, mainly as base for drone PPK survey.

The files are available here:



Hi Gabriel,

Looks cool, I like the color! :relieved:

Just wanted to add that in general, we recommend checking Reach is properly ventilated in such setups. It’s important to ensure everything will work correctly.

Hi Gabriel ! That’s an awesome enclosure for the M2 ! I only see one issue with this… how do you ensure that the unit is level and over the control mark ? I would have thought you would use a tribrach with an optical plummet to have the enclosure mounted to.

You could buy one of these for about $40.00

and if course, the above fits in the tribrach.

The only issue I have with conventional tripods/tribrachs is determining an accurate measurement of the instrument/ARP height. I only use tribrachs for total stations/back sights/level instruments.

Using the set-up you have in the pics, how do you set the unit over a known mark ? That’s the only problem I see with your enclosure.

You would probably be better off buying a prism pole with with tripod legs… that way you could have a fixed height (i. e., 2.000 meters for example) and you would be confident in your base setup as far as your base elevation and horizontal position over the mark. It would also be easier to handle also.

If you use the prism pole with the tripod legs on windy days, get you some sandbags to place on the legs. This will keep your setup from blowing over. This has happened to me on a couple of occasions.


So far so good… no problems yet in >40°C brazilian environment.


Good questions!

This is a working in progress and so far I have been using it only as a base for PPK drone survey (also using a M2). For most of the jobs, neither Ground Control Points or absolute accuracy are required, thus, on those cases I don’t even need to collect points with this tripod setup.

This is a only a cheap DIY solution and all the gear upgrades you have sugested would improve the setup, of couse.

I will try to keep it simple and cheap. Concerning leveling of the antena, I have this idea to add a round bubble level and (gross) adjust the tripod legs. Councerning centering, let’s assume the antenna axis in concentric to the tripod screw, so I guess it’s possible to add a laser beam concentrical to the tripod screw, pointing straight down. However, measuring the height above ground is still a problem.

What do you think about those ideas? Do you think it could work?


Why re-invent the wheel ? If your doing any kind of accurate work, the equipment I mentioned will make things a whole lot easier and the cost is minimal compared to the M2 and antenna.

Even with the tribrach and center mount the cost is minor, you already have the tripod. If you had the money for the drone, M2, antenna, software, computer or 3D printer to make the mount, why not go “all the way” and buy the quality equipment you need for accurate data ?

You’ll wish you had the equipment one day. Just my 2¢ opinion.


Thanks for the advice, when the time to ensure the unit is level and over a control mark comes I will take it into great consideration.

In the meanwhile I will keep you informed of further improvements.


This topic was automatically closed 100 days after the last reply. New replies are no longer allowed.