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Thread: What is your preferred measurement scale?

  1. #1

    What is your preferred measurement scale?

    I’m somewhat of an old gear head Imperial system . I’ve come to the point that I don’t even like writing down fractions anymore. I’d rather write down decimals of an inch (ie.12.656 than 12 21/32)

    If I’m calling it out, to be cut by a partner, I work to 1/16” Light, half, or heavy. This gets me close to 1/64”

    One of my newer machines is metric(planer). Some of my more recent drawings are now metric. But I still preferre to use Imperial. 95% of my machines are imperial and all my measuring instruments are Imperial.

    How goes your struggle?

    How many guys are still using the vernier scale for 1/128 or 1/256???

    Thank you 25.4!
    Last edited by Matt Mattingley; 05-02-2018 at 12:49 AM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
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    SE PA - Central Bucks County
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    Honestly, except for on the CNC where it’s easiest to use decimal inches, I’ve moved to metric for all my projects.

  3. #3
    Swap between digital inches and fractional inches.

  4. #4
    Metric is a lot simpler but I still use Imperial fractions for most of my work.

    Mike
    Go into the world and do well. But more importantly, go into the world and do good.

  5. #5
    Don’t get me wrong. I love millimetres too. If I get a drawing that says to make something 171.45mm, I know what they’re talking about.... it is 6 3/4 of an inch. 1000 mm equals 39.37”.... but I usually have to convert everything to a decimal of an inch.
    Last edited by Matt Mattingley; 05-02-2018 at 1:35 AM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
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    So Cal
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    I have no problem using the Imperial system.
    Most of the time I'm reference building so exact numbers mean nothing.
    If I'm making a table I do check to see if it's 30 inches tall and the right length
    Aj

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    As I am a bit prone to point out, my struggle with metric was brief and about 40 years ago when we changed from imperial by federal legislation. Metric or imperial is not ideology or anything, its just a number put to a size. Use what you like and to hell with everyone else. Will one or the other improve your standard of workmanship? I think your skills might be a bit more impressive than the measuring system. Cheers
    Every construction obeys the laws of physics. Whether we like or understand the result is of no interest to the universe.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
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    5,411
    Depends..
    Over 6" and I use Imperial & fractions.
    6" and under, I use the digital caliper I got from HF for about $20 and I toggle between everything. Metric is the easiest, but, a push of the button converts to fractions.
    'Cause all I wanna do is go the distance...

  9. #9
    Holy crap, what are you building that requires precision down to 1/256"? And how in the world did you maintain those tolerances?


    I use decimal imperial
    I use fractional imperial
    I use decimal SI
    I use Factional SI

  10. #10
    I too most often use metric inches for smaller measurements, like under 6", and inches and fractions over that.

  11. #11
    i use Digital calipers quite often in woodwork and generally work in Imperial but with the push of a button it’s converted to metric. Anything longer than my caliper is Imperial. Although I have a 40 inch Digital read out . I think with the advent of the digital readouts for the machine now days it’s pretty easy for anybody to work with any tolerance now. It’s most greatest asset is to Repeatable set up’s . Still set all my knives To decimal inches
    Last edited by jack forsberg; 05-02-2018 at 8:09 AM.
    jack
    English machines

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
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    Canada
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    107
    Lets be honest almost every measurement done in North America that is metric is just a conversion from Imperial measurement, that's why we get some of the wacky numbers seen on drawings. Use what your brain was originally trained to use and convert when/if needed. Like Jack said it's typically with a press of a button. Like Wayne said its been about 40 years since the conversion in both of our countries, I don't know about his but Canada is a still a mish mash of Imperial with adapted metric measurement.

  13. #13
    Join Date
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    If I'm the furniture designer, it's metric.

    If I have a plan in Imperial units, then I use that.

    I find metric a lot easier to use and design with, for example I'll make stock 20mm thick, makes for easy arithmetic. It helps that my planer is metric as well..........Rod.

  14. #14
    Join Date
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    At my age I've lived through the attempts at conversion from imperial to metric in the U.S.. The result is I am pretty comfortable with both for lengths and volumes. Still not good at guesstimating KPH but, I was never really good at MPH either ;-)
    She said “How many woodworking tools do you need?”
    I said “Why? Do you know someone who is selling some?”


  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Matt Mattingley View Post
    I’m somewhat of an old gear head Imperial system . I’ve come to the point that I don’t even like writing down fractions anymore. I’d rather write down decimals of an inch (ie.12.656 than 12 21/32)

    If I’m calling it out, to be cut by a partner, I work to 1/16” Light, half, or heavy. This gets me close to 1/64”

    One of my newer machines is metric(planer). Some of my more recent drawings are now metric. But I still preferre to use Imperial. 95% of my machines are imperial and all my measuring instruments are Imperial.

    How goes your struggle?

    How many guys are still using the vernier scale for 1/128 or 1/256???

    Thank you 25.4!
    I think better in imperial, that is, I can envisage 12" more easily than 300mm. 48" or 4' is easier than 1200mm (actually 1219mm roughly). So when I measure up, to gauge the size of something, I prefer imperial.

    However, when I draw up a plan, computing fractions is a pain. For example, 4 3/4" + 3 1/16" = aaaaahhhh!! I much rather go 120mm (because you would use round numbers) + 75mm = 195mm. So much easier! So, metric for drawing up.

    Now tape measures and scales are very imprecise for multiples, such with the many drawer blades I need to mark in the apothecary chest I am building. Far better to use dividers ...



    The other tool to use when transferring measurements is a cutting gauge.



    Regards from Perth

    Derek

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