A Tape Measure For Woodworking?
One of the first tools you need to get started woodworking is going to be a good tape measure. There are a lot of measuring devices for woodworking, but most people don't think of a tape measure for woodworking. Most often, a tape measure is seen as a contractor's tool or for someone working outside building houses and framing. Please stay with me, because this little tool is super versatile. Now let's talk about its design and some of its many uses.
Parts Of The Tape Measure
The tab hook on the end of a measuring tape is noticeably loose by design, and for a good reason. Whether the end of the tape is pushed in or pulled out, you get the same measurement. The distance of this "wiggle" should be precisely equal to the thickness of the hook.
Notice the little slot in the tab? This is a "nail hook." If you measure something long and you do not have an assistant to hold the end of your tape, you can put a screw or nail into the end of the board and hook it on this slot.
The belt hook makes the tape easy to hang on your belt, tool pouch, or pocket.
Check Your Tape Measure For Accuracy.
Before you trust your tape measure for more precise measuring, make sure you do this quick accuracy check.
Next, pull the tape over the end of the steel ruler, again check to make sure the numbers on the tape lineup with the numbers on the ruler.
Remember, the ideal time to check your tape measure measurements is at the hardware store before you purchase a measuring tape.
Helpful Hint: I have never remembered to bring my steel ruler to the hardware store, so I take one of theirs off the shelf and use it to check tape measures before I buy them.
Get The Most From Your Retractable Tape Measure
There are a lot of ways someone could use a tape measure, but the first place I take mine is to the lumberyard.
Here you can check to make sure the stock you are purchasing is long enough and wide enough for the pieces you need to cut later.
Once you get your wood back to your shop, a measuring tape is a perfect tool for making all of your rough measurements. I use it a lot to make sure I have the correct length and width clearly marked on the lumber. I use a contractor pencil or crayon when doing this measuring.
I use my tape measure when I'm setting up my bandsaw fence or even double-check my table saw fence.
When assembling a box or casework of any type, the tape measure is your best friend for measuring corner-to-corner diagonals and check for Square.
It's terrific because it easily flexes under clamps and has the handy hook to stay in place on the corners.
When I do the precise measuring, I'll make sure to "Rock" the extended tape to one side so that it's flush with the wood I'm measuring. I also start my measurements from the 10 or 12 inch Mark rather than from the hook. Just be sure to subtract that 10 or 12 inches from your final measurement.
Another helpful friend of mine is a roll of blue painters tape. When I'm getting precise tape measurements, I'll use a short blue tape piece to hold the end of the tape measure in position. Securing the end gives me a lot more confidence that nothing is slipping while I'm trying to keep the measuring edge flush against the wood.
Thanks For Reading!
After reading this post, I hope you have a better understanding of the different parts of the tape measure. Perhaps you have learned a couple of new techniques as well.
You can learn more about tools you will need in my post "Beginner Woodworking Tool List." I hope you like it!
Here at https://howtogetstartedwoodworking.com, I want you to find answers to your questions.
Let me know what you think in the comment section. I'd love to hear of any other tips or tricks with tape measuring.
I hope this post measured up to your expectations!