Johnson Laser Distance Measure Review – Model 40-6001

Johnson Model 40-6001 Laser Distance Measure

Johnson Model 40-6001 Laser Distance MeasureThe folks at Johnson Level and Tool recently sent me some of their latest products to test and evaluate. The first product that I tested was their Model 40-6001 Laser Distance Measure. Laser distance measuring tools are an essential tool in my tool bag and something that every contractor should absolutely have.

Model 40-6001 Specifications / Features

  • Accuracy:    ±1/16″ (±2mm)
  • Battery Life:    5,000 Measurements
  • Calculated Measuring:    Addition/Subtraction, Area, Volume, 3 Pythagoras Functions (2-Point, 3-Point, 3-Point Partial)
  • Dimensions:    4.1″ x 2.4″ x 1.3″ (104 x 61 x 33mm)
  • Indirect Measuring:    Pythagoras Functions: Front, Rear, Tripod Thread
  • IP Protection Class:    54
  • Laser Classification:    Class II
  • Laser Wavelength:    650nm (Red)
  • Maximum Power Output:    <1mW
  • Measurement Reference Settings:    Front, Rear, Tripod Thread
  • Measuring Types:    Single Distance, Min/Max, Continuous Measuring, Sound Activated Mode, stakeout Function (2 settings)
  • Power Supply:    1 9V alkaline battery (included)
  • Temperature Range Storage:    -4°F to +140°F (-20°C to +60°C)
  • Temperature Range Usage:    +32°F to +104°F (0°C to 40°C)
  • Tripod Screw Thread :   1/4″ – 20
  • Units of Measure:    Inches, Feet + Inches, Metric
  • Weight:   1.5lbs (0.6kg)
  • Working Range:    165′ (50m)

My Take On The Johnson Laser Distance Measure

Of all the tools that I used on a daily basis the one that saves me the most time is a laser distance measuring tool. Doing estimates, ordering materials and helping with layout are all tasks that I used these tools for. Next to my tape measure I can’t think of a tool that I use more. Needless to say with such an important tool it’s imperative that I work well, offer lots of features and take a beating on the job site.

The Johnson 40-6001 offers all the features I expect from a good laser distance measure. You can do all the basic measurements such as:

  • Linear Distance from the device to a surface.
  • Area – Simply measure along two perpendicular walls and the device calculates the area for you.
  • Volume – Simply measure along two perpendicular walls and floor to ceiling and the device calculates the volume for you.

More advanced measurements can be taken using the built in Pythagoras feature. This can be really useful when trying to determine the height of a building from a distance and sizes of windows that can’t be reached on upper floors.

Johnson claims and accuracy of plus or minus 1/16″ but frankly it’s not an issue in my mind. No one can hold one of these things perfectly perpendicular or parallel to a surface so the measurement itself is likely to be not as accurate as you might think. These tools are a workhorse for estimating which frankly can be off an inch without a problem.

This model offers 3 reference points to measure from; front, rear and tripod screw. They should consider adding a fold down reference for hard to reach areas like corners.

The Model 40-6001 comes with a carrying case which you can attach to your belt and a protective cover. The carrying case and protective cover are great for keeping the tool protected from the elements. I especially applaud the plastic cover!

Overall the Johnson Laser Distance Measure is easy to use. The control panel icons are easy to understand and operate. Once you’ve used any type of laser distance tool you quickly realize they all operate in a similar fashion.

One thing that I’d like to see change on this model is the “fractions” read out on the LCD screen. The regular numbers are plenty big and easy to read. However, the fractions are really small and hard to read at times depending on the light, especially in bright daylight.

Overall Impression

The Johnson Laser Distance Measure, Model 40-6001 is a really good laser distance measuring tool. It offers lots of great features, it’s easy to use, it’s built of quality materials and most importantly it works great. If you’re in the market for a new laser distance measuring tool then this is one you should consider. Priced around $160 it’s comparable to other laser distance measures that include the Pythagoras features. If you’re interested in buying one  you can check it out online at:

About the author

Todd Fratzel

Todd Fratzel is the Editor-in-Chief and Founder of Tool Box Buzz, and the President of Front Steps Media, LLC, a web based media company focused on the Home Improvement and Construction Industry.He is also the Principal Engineer for United Construction Corp., located in Newport, NH. In his capacity at United he oversees the Residential and Commercial Building Division along with all Design-Build projects.He is also the editor of Home Construction & Improvement.

@tfratzelTodd Fratzel

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  1. jeff_williams

    I have this tool and it is indispensable for quick measurements. I can see it being really handy for realtors as well as any estimator.

    1. Todd Fratzel

      Lots of folks use them now including building inspectors, tax adjusters and insurance adjusters. Honestly I’d hate to do my job without one!

  2. jr

    disappointed in it. Honey who shrunk the instruction manual/

    1. Todd Fratzel

      In what way? are you having trouble figuring out how to use it properly?

  3. dan

    My tool has to be in the silent mode to measure one distance and then another. (Normal mode) Is this tool working properly?

    1. Todd Fratzel

      Doesn’t sound right. Sounds like you should call their technical support line.

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