Caliper comparison 2018

Purchase advice on calipers comparison or test 2018

  • With calipers (also called calipers or calipers) objects are measured to the millimeter accuracy.
  • Calipers have two so-called "measuring legs" at the top and bottom of the "ruler" to measure either a gap or circumference.
  • Calipers differ in their displays: there are analog, digital and clock calipers.

Caliper comparison 2018: 2018

1. For precision with the caliper

The apprenticeship is not an education

In technology, gauges are objects that perfectly conform to a standard. Typically, most teachings do not carry values ​​like a ruler, You yourself are just the measure of a certain size.

For example, there are boresight limit gauges: these are just cylinders in different standard sizes that meet certain standard sizes. A limit gauge is then merely inserted into a boreholeto check if the drill hole is smaller or larger than the standard object.

The caliper is a gauge and measuring tool Therefore, with its adjustable value scale, it represents a special feature among the teachings. The caliper or its scales are manually pushed apart or together.

Calipers are measuring instruments used to measure interiors or perimeters. This can be, for example, the circumference of a screw nut or the width of its thread. Calipers work to the millimeter exactly.

This measuring tool is sometimes called calipers or calipers, because it is not intended for measuring, but mainly for checking as so-called "teaching". But nevertheless, the caliper is ideal as a measuring instrument.

A caliper test quickly shows if a screw fits through the hole or not, Even outside the hobbyist area, applications are conceivable: For example, archaeologists can use calipers to determine and categorize bones.

Antiquarians can gauge whether antique calibers match certain antique weapons. But beware: This can lead to confusion in southern German climes, because there the caliper is also called "caliber".

2. Analog vs. digital: These caliper types are available

The different types of calipers are not determined by structure and function, but by their display: So there are digital and analog callipers, But it does not stop here, in the trade are also calipers with analog display in the form of a clock.

The most important caliper types in comparison are briefly presented below:

2.1. Analog Caliper

Caliper comparison 2018: comparison

For analog calipers, the value is displayed directly with the back and forth sliding vernier.

Calipers with analog display are the classics among the calipers. The values ​​are read from a kind of ruler or tape measure: the main scale. At this scale, the so-called vernier is pushed along, Caliper vernier always shows the current value on the main scale.

But even as a classic, this tool is not inferior to digital calipers in terms of accuracy. It's just a matter of taste how you want to read your caliper.

The big advantage of the analog models over the digital calipers is that they do not need a battery and always store ready in the tool box. In addition, analog calipers are always waterproof and start to rust at most.

2.2. The digital caliper

Caliper comparison 2018: calipers

Digital displays can be read quickly.

The digital caliper displays the measured values ​​on a small display, This facilitates and speeds up the checking of many items. So you do not have to interpret each time the lines on a scale, but gets the exact value displayed on the screen.

However, if the digital caliper loses its power, you're out of sight. The display obscures the analog vernier with electronic calipers (the "ruler" with the values) or he has none at all. Without a battery, a caliper with digital display is useless.

In addition, the power cell makes it susceptible to moisture, So when you are outdoors, make sure that the electronic caliper is at least protected from splash water. This is specified with the protection standard IPX4. Further information about the IP standard can be found in chapter 5.3. our vernier caliper comparison 2018.

2.3. PM caliper

Caliper comparison 2018: comparison

Clock calipers have a round scale for reading.

In principle, the clock caliper is also an analog calliper. This variant works without batteries, but has an indicator in the form of a clock: the round scale. Here you do not have to read the values ​​along a straight vernier, but you can concentrate on the dial of the round scale.

3. A lesson to buy: buying advice for calipers

Digital or analogue displays do not make a caliper comparison winner.What aspects to advantages or disadvantages in the Calipers-Buying, only becomes apparent in how you want to use it, The best caliper you have to meet your special requirements: For example, whether you work a lot outdoors or only in the workshop.

3.1. Analog vs. digital

Caliper comparison 2018: caliper

Digital calipers can theoretically do a lot. Practically they are useless without a battery.

The question you should start with is: Where do I measure the most? Outside? In the dark? This shows whether you need a measuring device that is easy to read and whether it should be waterproof.

Digital calipers can be read off quickly and occasionally there are also models with integrated lighting. Some can even save values ​​or change the value size: for example, from millimeters to centimeters.

With analog calipers you have to read all this yourself from the vernier, but this caliper is always waterproof and comes without a battery.

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of the Digital Caliper compared to the analogue at a glance:

  • Display is easy to read
  • Read-out resolution mostly adjustable (cm / mm)
  • Values ​​can be saved occasionally
  • Lighting possible
  • needs a battery
  • not always waterproof
  • more bulky through the display

3.2. locking screw

Caliper comparison 2018: 2018

A locking screw helps with many measurements in a row.

If you want to check if a whole series of parts is the exact size, it works the fastest if you can not read the display. A locking screw secures the gauge in the desired position and you only need to hold the measuring legs (also measuring beak) to the workpiece, then you see whether it fits or not.

3.3. material

Most calipers are made of steel. Steel does not wear off when measuring, does not bend so quickly and in many cases is also rust-free, Although plastic calipers may also be rust-free, they are also likely to be cheap vernier calipers, but they quickly wear off.

Plastic measuring gauges are not recommended as measuring tools, They can already deform on hot summer days and no longer measure exactly to the millimeter.

3.4. Caliper measured

Caliper comparison 2018: comparison

A table with the most important standard sizes saves the lookup.

When do you need a caliper with 300 mm and 500 mm length? The usual calipers measure up to a width of 150 mm, But when larger components, such as car or marine engines, are to be measured, they also need larger measuring devices: Up to 500 mm are not exaggerated here.

A conventional Caliper gauge in 150 mm acts like a pocket caliper in addition to a gauge of 500 mm length. But for most measurements 150 mm are enough.

3.5. Dimensions in view

Not necessarily necessary, but a helpful bonus are calipers that have a small measurement chart. There are usually noted standard sizes.

Particularly common sizes for standard threads according to DIN 13 are listed here:

Thread (metric ISO)Diameter for core drillsSpanner size for hexagon screw
M21.6 mm4.0 inches
M32.5 mm5.5 inches
M43.3 mm7.0 inches
M54.2 mm8.0 inches
M65.0 mm10.0 inches
M86.8 mm13.0 - 14.0 inches

Customs not wanted: As the Stiftung Warentest reported, manufacturers and providers in Germany make themselves liable to prosecution if they specify dimensions without the unit "centimeter" (cm). Customs may be made, but alone are not sufficient.

4. A gauge to measure: You should pay attention to the use of calipers

Caliper comparison 2018: calipers

The upper measuring legs measure internal dimensions.

Professionals can skip this chapter, but if you're not sure how to work with a caliper, our next vernier caliper explanation will help. Three values ​​can be measured with a vernier caliper: outer dimensions, inner dimensions and depth dimensions, Therefore, a caliper is always a depth caliper.

Internal dimensions

Caliper comparison 2018: comparison

The lower measuring legs measure the external dimension.

Internal dimensions, ie intermediate spaces, are checked with the inner measuring legs: for example, from nuts or drilled holes. These sit above the caliper. The small beak-shaped pegs must push with their outside to the inner area of ​​the opening. Then the corresponding value is displayed with the vernier.

External dimensions

Caliper comparison 2018: comparison

At the far end the depth gauge comes out.

With the outer measuring leg, the circumference of a component can be checkedfor example, the circumference of a pipe to pass through a borehole. These measuring legs are located on the underside of the caliper.


If you have opened and closed the caliper on a trial basis, you may have noticed that a thin rod extends at the back end. This is good for depth measurements. The width of the rod to the end of the main scale corresponds to the value indicated by the vernier.

For example, you can push the depth gauge into a cylinder and find out how deep it is.

Caliper test: For the fun of it, you can also do a caliper test and measure a few items, whether they match their size on the box. With small vernier caliper exercises you also get used to the handle of the precision gauges quickly.

5. Frequently asked questions about calipers

One thing in advance: even if the spelling "calipers" can sometimes be found on the internet, this has not even been correct before the spelling reform. "Calipers" was and is always wrong. It has to be called "caliper".

5.1. Who is the caliper from?

Caliper comparison 2018: calipers

If you stay in the millimeter range, will be happy with most calipers.

This question can not be answered unambiguously, since pieces have already been found that date from a period 600 years before the birth of Christ.

5.2. How precise is the caliper?

Vernier calipers are literally accurate to the millimeter. However, if you want to check even more closely, you should pay attention to particularly high-quality vernier calipers, which have a very low fault tolerance.

According to Wikipedia, vernier calipers measure in the wide range between 0.01 to 0.2 millimeters inaccurate. Even more accurate are so-called "micrometers".

5.3. When is a digital caliper waterproof?

Whether a digital caliper is waterproof, you can see quickly if the device has an IP identifier. IP is a protection standard for electronic devices. The first digit indicates protection against solid objects such as sand or dust and the second indicates protection against liquids. An X stands for "not specified". The higher the number in the IP-ID, the better the device is protected.

IP protection: If IPX4 is noted on a device, then it is completely protected from splash water. Waterproof it is only from IPX7.

5.4. How much does a caliper cost?

Cheap calipers are available for less than 20 euros. Among them are often well-known brands and manufacturers, such as Mannesmann, Burg-Wächter or Projahn.


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