Ever Wondered Why Your Measuring Tape Has Black Diamonds On It. Mystery Solved

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While every person knows how to use a measuring tape, almost none of us have any idea of the small markings and numerals that are subtly placed in between the numbers and dashes. Today, we are going to give a full low down on all the nitty-gritty of a measuring tape so that you work as a professional next time.

Pic Credits: Diply

We start off with the obvious details: the larger numbers at the top represent inches, while the smaller numbers on the bottom of the tape indicate centimeters.

Credits: the tape store

These circled Roman numerals are sometimes present in between and represent the level of accuracy of the measuring tape. The smaller the numerals, the more accurate your tape is. The tapes that don’t have these marks have no guaranteed level of accuracy.

Credits: the tape store

The circled numbers on the left, shown in the picture below, represent the total length of the tape measure. The manufacturers print the length on the tape as it is required by the law.

Credits: the tape store

Now coming to the mysterious black diamonds, which may look like dark circles.

These diamonds appear at the 19.2-inch mark and allow the construction workers to make five trusses in an eight-foot space. Truss layouts or items are usually eight feet in length, and when you divide 8 feet (96 inches) into five, you get 19.2 inches.

Pic Credits: Love This Pic

This accuracy would be difficult to achieve without these marks because of the decimal point. Hence, the diamonds are placed to end the hassle altogether. While the presence of these diamonds may seem trivial to the average Joe; it is vital for the construction workers as most of the American construction materials come in lengths of eight feet.

You now are an expert tape measurer!

You’re welcome!



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  1. Money just think how much it cost. And thebillions that were made to stork the industrys in this country. Money never used it when i was a kid

  2. Ignorance is bliss. I once suggested metric to a calm neighbor who was a banker. He went blastic that I would suggest a non patriotic scheme used by all but the USA and a few 3rd countries. A 1x1x1 cm of water weighs a gram. To heat it 1 degree takes a thermal unit. I can make a box that holds a liter of water, know it’s 1000 cubic centimeters, know it weighs 1kg, and how much heat to warm it 10 degrees without a calculator. But no, here I’m on a ladder trying to 2 feet 3-7/64 inched by 4 so my coat pegs will be even…..Also those tapes with inches and mm are useless, I end up with mm aganist the object trying to sight across the tape to read inches. If I have to use inches I want it on both edges of the tape.

  3. Thanks a lot for the new information. My bet is a lot of us so called backyard carpenters didn’t know about the black diamond’s. I do now and it could come of use in the future. Thanks again

      1. World standard??!! Hahahaha!!!!You probably never left your neighborhood and are discoursing about “the world”. Check your computer on google, wikipedia or ANY other source. Now you can continue transforming inches in decimal to enable arithmetics…

    1. Actualy, divide 250 cm by 5 is quite more easy and not necessitate this black diamonds. It is interesting to see how they find a tricky way to ease the work with the old system rather than use a clearly simple system !

        1. Right or wrong the imperial system was what we were taught. Clever has nothing to do with it! Why would one learn a system that isn’t used in their country? It is as common to us as being rude is for some folks.

        1. When I told “exactly” above I was addressing Mr. LeLoupBlanc. To Ms. Sherrie Olson I need to say that your text is nonsense: Even being wrong you’re using because your teachers told so??!! If imperial was better I would override my school and buy inches and feet tapes…