CMU School of Drama

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

I’ve Always Noticed A Black Diamond On My Tape Measure, But Had No Idea Why Until Now

AWM: If you’re like me, a tape measure is an important tool in your utility drawer or tool box. And one thing my father taught me that I’ll never forget is to always measure twice and cut once. Because once you cut, you can’t undo it. I’m sure you’ve heard the old proverb yourself…


Claire Krueger said...

Everytime I think there's no more things you could know about a tape measure, there's always something new. In DR’s carpentry stagecraft class my mind was blown by how many different parts there are. The simple tricks like hooking the end onto an edge and the hidden tricks like hooking a nail into the groove and tracing a circle. Or even that the base of most tape measures is exactly 3” so you can easily measure into corners. I also never knew just how delicate the metal tips of a tape measure are, especially when your margin of error is very unforgiving. That a reasonable bump can cause one tape measure to function differently than another, and just how easily a 1/16th of an inch can mess up a flat. While the black diamond trick is something I’ll probably never use I can’t help but be fascinated at how so many hidden goodies tape measure hide.

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There is lots of space in space.

Cosette Craig said...

I'm a sucker for tape measure click bait and a typography video with some upbeat acoustic guitar. This is one of those little secrets to keep that you probably won't need all the time but sometime at some point it'll save you a few minutes. It's like when you learn a weirdly specific shortcut in auto cad that only applies to something very specific but it'll come up again and you can rack your brain to remember the command. I wonder why they don't put things like this in the literature that comes with a tape or on the package. Prior to this overly enthusiastic article, I had not even noticed most of the differentiations and marks this aerticle talks about. Swim times I'll mark up my own equipment, like my hand drafting tools, to give myself quick shortcut tools to be a more efficient worker. It's essentially the same concept as building a quick jig.

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