Tools for length calculation of short distances are as simple as diversely. Folding rule, caliper and tape measures are equipped with a scale to determine length, width or heigth of distances or areas. Usually, caliper additionally have a vernier scale. That is a second movable scale for a more precise determination. Besides the scale, that mostly is a metric one in German-speaking areas, measuring instruments hardly have more similarities, because for every measuring application there is a precisely matching and special device.
Measuring tapes, caliper, folding rule – being spoilt for choice
A folding rule, also called folding meter, is the first choice in terms of do-it-yourself and domestic use. It is compact, rapidly deployable, easy to handle and stowed quickly in the trouser pocket. Tape measures work well in order to survey curved surfaces or curvatures like in landscape architecture. For distance measuring in sport competitions a rolling tapeline is ideal, because it is fastly unrolled for several meters and afterwards rolled up just as quickly by means of the crank.
If highest measuring accuracy is required or inner and outer diameter shall be determined, calipers are best suited. Digital calipers not only measure distances quickly and precisely, they also facilitate reading off the values by means of their digital display.
Often a simple try-square with plain ruler is already sufficient for length measuring or angle determination. Of course, all distance measuring devices always have to be in mint condition, since even one missing centimeter at a folding ruler’s front end could cause devastating consequences in great projects.