Measuring tools are essential for the workshop, whether you indulge in plumbing, carpentry, or even stone masonry. Measuring tools provide an accurate way of observing and recording the world around us. Even the smallest error in measurement can ruin an entire project, wasting a lot of time and resources to correct the error. It is essential to invest in the best quality measurement and layout tools, which will ensure that the project you begin goes as planned. Investing in good quality tools also means that they are durable, which means that they will last longer and remain accurate for many years to come.
The angle locator is also commonly referred to as an angle finder. It is a tool with a magnetic base that seamlessly attaches itself to metal measuring squares. You can also find different variants that feature a self-threading screw for convenient use with non-metallic measuring squares.
The angle locator helps you in measuring angles and replicate the angle of an existing area. Most angle locators are fitted with conversion guides that make them more helpful in identifying stair slopes, roof pitches, and drainage angles. Although many digital angle locators are available, sometimes all you need is a simple analogue device for your home projects.
The protractor is a simple, transparent half-circle ruler that is used in measuring angles. The protractor is usually marked with degrees – from 0 to 180. They are commonly used in mathematics for measuring the angles of different geometrical shapes.
Protractors are also used in mechanical engineering and architecture.
Just like the angle locators, you can also opt for an analogue or digital caliper. The caliper is an essential tool that is mainly used in the measurement of the distance between two sides of an object. You need to adjust the tips of the calipers to fit across the object you want to measure, then remove the calipers and place them on an integrated ruler – for analogue calipers – to get the exact measurements. Digital calipers will feature an in-built measuring tool – eliminating the need for a measuring ruler.
Calipers are crucial in a variety of technical fields. They are a standard tool for engineers, doctors, scientists, woodworkers, metal workers, and researchers.
Micrometer Screw Gauge
You can interchangeably use a micrometer and caliper for the same purpose. The micrometer is more or less quite similar to the caliper. However, it is designed to read the depth, thickness and length of an object. It is a standard tool in mechanical and automotive engineering, as well as machine shops.
William Gascoigne invented the micrometer in the 1630s – he was the astronomer who also created the telescope. He initially used the micrometer to locate the distance between planets, stars, and other celestial bodies.
Today, there are many different types of micrometers available; these include blade micrometers, tube micrometers, bench micrometers, and digital micrometers.
The ruler is one of the most popular tools on our list, and even kids know how it works. However, rulers are used for more than just school work and are quite helpful in various situations. You can use it to read the length of an object by simply lining it up with the thing.
Professional tradesmen use rulers in different fields to help with their everyday work. Architects use them to help read large-scale buildings, whereas woodworkers use them to mark the valid points they need to drill or cut through. Rulers are a must-have for your home workshop, and it is always wise to have more than one lying around.
The bubble inclinometer is another popular measuring tool that you have probably come across a few times in the past. It is designed to tell the range of motion at a joint. You can also use it to read the steepness of a grade. The bubble inclinometer is commonly used by woodworkers, masons, and even sports therapists – to estimate the range of motion at the body’s crucial joints.
A drawing compass consists of two adjoined lengths of metal. One of the metal pieces features a sharp point at the end, making it easy to grip onto paper. The other piece of metal can have a pencil or any other marking device attached to it.
The two pieces of metal are adjustable so that you can set the compass at different angles. This makes it convenient to make different sized circles or tell the distance between two points. Architects commonly use the compass, and it can be pretty valuable for your technical drawing projects. It is also used by military personnel, pilots, and sailors, to determine the distance between two points on a map. A compass is vital for measuring circles and can be used in carpentry, small scale manufacturing and product design.
The navigation compass is another popular tool on our list. It has been around for ages and is considered one of the earliest computers ever created. The compass was essential in kicking off the era of sea exploration. It is used for navigation and establishing orientation on a map. The compass relies on the magnetic pull of the earth to show the relative direction for the user.
The compass was one of the four great inventions of China and was initially used for divination purposes. Today, the compass is widely used for military operations, hiking, sailing, and other outdoor activities.
The level is used to determine the true horizontal of an object. The level can be described as an optical instrument that uses air bubbles in a liquid medium to display the results. Levels are useful in everyday home projects such as mounting televisions, installing cabinets, or aligning wall light fixtures. It is also a standard tool in construction work, metalwork and woodwork.
The pressure gauge is a versatile measurement tool used to quantify a wide range of things, including blood pressure, tire pressure, air pressure, depth and even altitude. Aneroid and hydrostatic gauges are the most common styles of analogue pressure gauges. Aneroid gauges are ideal for quick measurements, whereas hydrostatic gauges are slower but perfect for sustained pressure.
If you enjoy woodworking projects, the square is a must-have tool. It is used to find the right angles of objects. However, most squares are also designed to find the 45-degree angle without having to use a protractor. It is useful for a wide range of tasks, including cutting lumber, framing and even plumbing.
The measuring tape is the most specific measuring device you can think of. It is a simple, ingenious tool that helps you read the length of the object. The device works just like an ordinary ruler. However, it is much more compact and reads more extended objects. Measuring tapes are another go-to tool for carpenters, plumbers, and metal workers.
The compact design makes it conveniently portable, and you can easily attach it to your belt thanks to a clip fitted on its rear side. Most measuring tapes feature a handy switch that will lock the tape into place so that you can easily read greater lengths without any assistance. Once you release the switch, the tape rapidly retracts back into the casing.
Tailor's Measuring Tape
A tailor’s measuring tape works just like a standard measuring tape. However, it features a different construction because of what it is used for. The tailor’s measuring tape is designed for use on fabrics, and this is why it is made with softer material and is considerably way more flexible.
Standard tape readers are usually made from metal and cased in a plastic cover. In contrast, a tailor’s measuring tape is made from a cotton-based material coated in plastic – to enhance its durability. The tape is significantly longer than a regular ruler.
Tailors use tape to determine the measurements of a person’s body to design clothes that fit perfectly on a person. The tape’s flexibility makes it easier to curve around different body parts, which helps produce more accurate measurements.
For most trade professionals, checking angles is a vital element of their everyday work. To acquire accurate data, it is important to make sure that everything is as it should be. An angle gauge is a device designed to read angles so that you can assess if everything is at the right level. It is an essential tool that cannot be overlooked for many projects.
Angles gauges are relatively affordable and are also very reliable and accurate. The angle gauge is digital in design, and apart from checking angles, it can also be used as a level.
Typical yardsticks are usually used in measuring 3 feet – 36 inches. Most yardsticks available in the market are fabricated from wood or steel. They are mainly used to read drapery, floor areas, and walls.
A speed square is also referred to as a triangle square, rafter angle square, or rafter square. It is a versatile triangular tool that carpenters commonly use for markings on lumber. Speed squares are used to make basic measurements, mark lines on lumber, and a saw guide for angled cuts. The tool can also be used as a try square, combination square, and framing square.
Mechanical Carpenter’s Pencil
Mechanical carpenter’s pencils are used by builders to mark on surfaces that the regular pencils cannot – they can draw on surfaces like stone or concrete. The lead density of the mechanical carpenter’s pencils makes it possible to indicate thick markings that are clear and easy to follow with a saw blade. The mechanical pencil should never be missed in your toolbox.
Laser tapes are also commonly referred to as laser distance meters or laser distance meters. They are the modern digital alternatives to the traditional reading tapes. The laser reader acquires readings by sending out laser light to the defined target. Then it automatically reads the amount of time it takes for the reflection to return to the point of origin. Laser readers are highly effective in measuring long distances because they are fast and accurate. The laser is commonly used by architects, construction workers, designers, and contractors.
If you have any prior experience in woodworking, the chances are that you already know that most projects consist of 45- and 90-degree angles. However, at times you may need to work with random angles – and this is where the sliding T-bevel prospers. It features a compassing blade that is perfect for dealing with random angles that come up; they can then be measured with the help of a protractor.
A plumb line is commonly used in construction work. However, it is also very instrumental in various home projects, such as hanging your wallpaper completely straight.
Thermometers are another important measuring tool that most people already have in their households. Thermometers are used to read the temperature – whether indoors or outdoors. Most people usually hang their thermometers outside to keep an eye on the daily temperature. However, you can also use them to tell body temperature or the temperatures of different objects.
Thermometers are also used for electrical, heating, and plumbing projects around the house. With a proper temperature measuring tool, you can accurately determine whether and where you are losing energy in your home – which can help you make necessary repairs, thus saving hundreds of dollars every year.
As you have seen, many measuring tools can make your life much better and safer. They are designed to enhance the quantity and quality of your life. The ability to read physical properties accurately has significantly increased the survival value that has provided humans with adaptive, evolutionary advantages that have been honed through multiple years of natural selection.
Suppose you enjoy working on your home projects over the weekend or just fixing and repairing different areas of your home. The correct measurement and precision tools can make your life easier and your projects more professional and durable. When picking out these measurement tools, you want to ensure that you get the best quality products. This will ensure that your tools work effectively and last for as long as you want them to. Multiple companies manufacture these tools, and most of them are easily accessible from your closest hardware store.