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I try to use metric whenever I can. I love the metric system and the 10 base is very easy for me to count and measure in. Now, my brain still thinks in inches for anything over I'd say a meter. I can't look at a board and say " self, that looks about 2.3 meters. I could easily say, it looks about 10 feet.

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I'd love to think in metric. It is truly a superior system. But in a practical woodworking sense I don't know if it makes good sense. Plywood in 18 or 19mm doesn't really make for easy math. Hardwood projects at 12,7 mm (yeah I used a comma as a decimal (another weird part of the metric system)) doesn't help sell the system either. It seems that in the business the metric folks are accommodating the imperial system. I like inches because a door for example is 36" or 42" or 30". A door 914.4 mm wide doesn't make it simple. 1000mm would. 900 wouldn't be bad. Maybe in Europe construction is more "even" in mm. Still the 3 digits to express 3' or 36" is a hurdle

Steve

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Ever seen a metric drive ratchet? No, 1/4, 3/8,1/2" drive is still the norm. So the metric system hasn't really taken on completely

Steve

 

I once saw a CRECENT WRENCH which was marked on the handle as being  "METRIC".

No kidding, I am serious!

Go figure.

 

I've seen ratchets In 5/16" drive and 5/8" drive too. They were made for the military with corresponding drive sockets of the usual imperial nut sizes. The idea was to keep personnel from stealing tools for home use.   

 

Rog

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Show me your 13mm drive sockets. How about 10mm drive? Metric sockets are driven with imperial ratchets as far as I know.

Steve

Oh I see what you mean. My metric sets do include imperial sockets, so i would imagine you are correct.

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I once saw a CRECENT WRENCH which was marked on the handle as being "METRIC".

No kidding, I am serious!

Go figure.

I've seen ratchets In 5/16" drive and 5/8" drive too. They were made for the military with corresponding drive sockets of the usual imperial nut sizes. The idea was to keep personnel from stealing tools for home use.

Rog

Military is a whole "nuther" subject. I used to rent shop space from a machine shop owner that did some military work. Dave had a job that specified a hole in a certain position with tolerances something like .1250" +.0001-.0000." They couldn't quite hold the tolerances and contacted the guy in charge who said that they had to go by the specs. He asked for a higher brass contact and eventually got a colonel who explained that the hole was to line up with a pin that held a certain rocket munition in place in the shipping crate to keep it from jiggling in transport. He accepted the lower tolerances. Our tax dollars hard at work fellas.

Steve

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I have lived my whole life in Canada, and while functional in both systems, I hate using metric for anything except temperature. Would actively resist using metric on a project as it is The Devil.

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Sometimes I wish I had rulers and a tape with inches on both sides but 16ths on one side and 10ths on the other.  Sort of a hybrid between the two and I get to keep my familiarity with inches but can easily take results from a calculator when it's the path of least resistance.

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Ever seen a metric drive ratchet? No, 1/4, 3/8,1/2" drive is still the norm. So the metric system hasn't really taken on completely

Steve

 

 

I always thought that was intriguing...  I hardly ever use my inch measurement sockets or wrenches, nearly everything I own uses metric fasteners.  The ratchet drive side is still in inches.

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I once saw a CRECENT WRENCH which was marked on the handle as being  "METRIC".

No kidding, I am serious!

 

 

I have one, a stubby version!   It seems silly at first, but mine has index marks imprinted on each side.  One side has metric lines, the other SAE.  The point of them is to let you ballpark the wrench before you wiggle into a tight spot.   It's one of those things that you've never needed, but once you have it, it's occasionally very useful.  I used the tool for months before I noticed the lines.

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The metric system is not that bad if you build with it rather than trying to convert from imperial. I've built cabinets with it for years. Throw the 32mm system into the mix with US style FF work it gets a little more complicated but in the end is easier than the imperial system.

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I have one, a stubby version!   It seems silly at first, but mine has index marks imprinted on each side.  One side has metric lines, the other SAE.  The point of them is to let you ballpark the wrench before you wiggle into a tight spot.   It's one of those things that you've never needed, but once you have it, it's occasionally very useful.  I used the tool for months before I noticed the lines.

 

This one was an el-cheapo 12" crescent wrench. The only marks on it were the casting marks, as it was made in Taiwan. :)

 

Rog

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Meet my metric coffee cup....it's 236.588 Milliliters....simple

Like Steve though, there are moments where I like a little more accuracy and go metric

post-2896-0-21822300-1423319667_thumb.jp

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Curious, how many of the Americans on here use the metric system rather than the correct way?

Ohio born and raised and I do it the correct way: in metric.

 

Of course, I have a physicist for a wife and engineers for friends, so I wouldn't be allowed to use English units :lol:

 

For what it's worth, those of you who work in decimal inches (usually thousandths) are just using Broken Metric. You've already admitted that fractions are a terrible thing, you just haven't gone all the way to using a rational system :lo:

 

 

 

 

 

just saying that none of these metric using countries have made it to the moon. :lol:

They skipped right ahead to putting things on other planets with the metric system. For that matter, WE put things on other planets with the metric system now.

 

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i ran a nuclear reactor/submarine

depth was in feet, pressure in pounds per square inch. horsepower. temperature in farenheit, range was in yards. refrigeration in btu, pump flow rates in gallons,  electical symtem was in metric,  kilowats.

 

also born and raised in Ohio.  go Buckeyes

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i ran a nuclear reactor/submarine

depth was in feet, pressure in pounds per square inch. horsepower. temperature in farenheit, range was in yards. refrigeration in btu, pump flow rates in gallons, electical symtem was in metric, kilowats.

Was it an American submarine? ;)

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Like others have mentioned I recognize that if I were to switch over to metric it would make most things much easier. A base 10 system that corresponds to other units in a simple, rational way just makes so much more sense. Converting units of length to volume, for example, is dead simple. And dividing measurements is also much easier. Halves and quarters aren't bad with fractions, but thirds sure can get complicated quickly. Splitting, say, 16 and 5/8" into three takes a bit to calculate out. And when I do I get 5 and 13/24. So then I have to round that to between 5 and 9/16 and 5 and 17/32 (since my marking tools don't measure in 24ths). But 42 cm or 422 mm divided by three isn't too bad to do in your head and easily done by a calculator. And rounding is easier too because I can round to the nearest cm, or mm, or whatever depending on how precise I have to be.

All that being said, I still think in terms of imperial units and all my tools (except my domino) are in imperial. Lumber here is sold in imperial units, and all of my customers (that is, my wife and kids) use imperial units to describe what they want. So I use imperial and actually kinda hope for the day I'm forced to change over.

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My beef with metric, is while being a more logical system, the smallest functional whole unit in woodworking the millimeter.  A millimeter being ~3/64"  If i want to get down to 64ths, which is where I do my visible joinery, I'd have to split millimeters.  I've got a rules that shows 64ths, and that's more precise than I can get without fudging on a metric ruler...

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My beef with metric, is while being a more logical system, the smallest functional whole unit in woodworking the millimeter.  A millimeter being ~3/64"  If i want to get down to 64ths, which is where I do my visible joinery, I'd have to split millimeters.  I've got a rules that shows 64ths, and that's more precise than I can get without fudging on a metric ruler...

That's just not true. It's like saying that the smallest functional unit of English unit is inches.

 

Half-millimeter (about 1/50th of an inch) graduated rulers are easily available for no more money than 1mm graduated rulers. Tenth-millimeter (about 1/250th of an inch) are also available at a dramatically increased price and aren't very useful without magnification.

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Why would you need to measure 1/64" or less?

Good joinery is a matter of a thousandth of an inch. I can certainly see wanting to lay it out to 1/64th during design. I routinely draw things down to the half mill, which is about the same. That's the limitation of my pencil line though.

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