7 Fun Things to Measure with Calipers Plus Measuring Tips

Selecting calipers and using them properly can be a daunting task for any engineer so we developed this list of items to help practice measuring with them, they just so happen to be fun. There are a variety of calipers in quality and length. Be sure to check out the product line of Mitutoyo calipers on our website now. For this post, we will be using digital calipers.

First, let’s breakdown the parts of a digital caliper. The parts of a caliper will depend on the brand and type of caliper. Below is the anatomy of Mitutoyo’s ABSOLUTE Zero calipers.

Second, the proper way to measure is by using the Thumb Roller item 11. The thumb roller allows for the ease of movement of the slider.

Thumb Roller

Third, zero out! Bring your measuring faces to a full close and use the ZERO/ABS button to create your origin. The origin can change depending on what your are measuring.


Now on to 7 fun things to measure and measuring tips!

1 – Check the Accuracy of the diameter of a linear shaft

The first item we will measure using the outside measuring faces is a MISUMI Linear Shaft. You can check the tolerance accuracy of the outer diameter surface.

Tip: Quality check items received from manufacturers or manufactured in house to pass tolerance standards with calipers.

2 – Check the depth of the wax of a candle.

Tip: Make sure that the edge of the caliper is on a level surface for proper reading.

3 – Check The Diameter of the Lead of a Mechanical Pencil
Engineers can be very picky with their lead diameter.

0.7 mm diameter lead
0.69 mm diameter reading

4 – It’s Fall! Measure the Length of a Pumpkin
Tip: Measuring things larger in diameter or length can help you get used to handling the calipers.

5 – Inner Diameter Measurement of the Bore of a Timing Pulley
Tip: Use the inside measuring faces (item 3) to measure inner diameters.

6 – Wanna know how much coffee?
Coffee is life and many engineers depend on it. Measure the outer diameter of your coffee mug as good practice.

Tip: There are various lengths of calipers available depending on your measuring needs.

7 – Unidentified Screw in the house or lab? No problem.
Use calipers to narrow down what diameter and length of that screw is.

Tip: Digital calipers can assist in determining measurements of parts that have no identifications or listed on a bill of materials.

Have we piqued your interest in calipers? There are many measuring tools that Mitutoyo manufactures, be sure to check them out here.

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