The History of Metrics
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  1. #1
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    Default The History of Metrics

    Hi
    Imperial vs Metrics comes up on the forum occasionally.
    Here is a little history.
    YouTube

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    So it's Sunday arvo and you're feeling a bit bored and could do with a heated discussion?.

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    Interesting history.
    I'm an engineer who works all over the world. Metric system...Meh
    It was a good idea when we used slide rules. Since the advent of computers, it's just other ways of doing things.

    The real problem is that there is not exactly one fully comprehensive metric system. Steel plate thickness availability varies, but always includes 6 and 12 mm thickness, since they are close to 1/4" and 1/2". Structural shapes vary from country to country.

    Pipe is a real beauty. It's all nominally the same as imperial with metric designations. Pipe threads? BSP in most places. That's right, 55 degree Whitworth with thread pitches in threads per INCH.

    When "the metric system" really is one unified system, where every raw material is made to the same standards across the globe, it may be worth converting.
    Not in my lifetime.

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    The USA is moving towards the metric system - INCH BY INCH

    "At this time, only three countries—Burma, Liberia, and the US—have not adopted the International System of Units (SI, or metric system) as their official system of weights and measures."

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    Quote Originally Posted by SAG 180 View Post
    So it's Sunday arvo and you're feeling a bit bored and could do with a heated discussion?.
    How heated? Cº or Fº?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    How heated? Cº or Fº?
    Depends on whether I'm using my Mars lander software to measure it.
    Even one of the last Imperial hold outs, Myanmar is going metric. If Uganda can do it I'm sure they can too .

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    The USA is moving towards the metric system - INCH BY INCH

    "At this time, only three countries—Burma, Liberia, and the US—have not adopted the International System of Units (SI, or metric system) as their official system of weights and measures."
    Now where have I read that before, before, before?

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    Oh for Pete's sake. The US officially IS METRIC. That was declared years ago, decades ago.

    The only problem is getting the people to actually use it. What do you want, storm troopers? You want metric, just use metric. If you work in a shop, don't accept prints that are not metric. The customers don't like it, TOUGH! Your boss says do it to English measure or you are fired: walk out. Just take metric jobs. When you shop for groceries don't buy anything that is labeled in English measure. Want a car, insist on all metric: not a single English number in it. Use gas for heating your house, refuse to pay by the pound or cubic foot. Your water bill is in gallons: DON"T PAY IT! Good luck with that.

    It is up to us. It is up to YOU. Do it 100% on a personal level or just quit complaining about it.

    As for the gauge sizes of metal stock, nothing is simple. Just try to buy steel plate that is 1/16" or 1/8" thick. You are going to be told that the nearest that we have is xxxxx. Have fun with that one. I just have to wonder if you can actually buy steel plate in nice round numbers, like a 1mm thickness in a metric country. I suspect that you are going to find odd sizes there also. So, come on and give us a list of steel plate sizes in France or Germany.

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    I did not watch the youtube link but its my understanding that our imperial standards are all calibrated to a metric standard. I think that switched in the 70's or something

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    First off make pizza and apple pie only divided to 10 pieces and never claim your cup is half full.

    but do agree having two standards is wasteful for screw threads.

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    Steel sheet metal sizes in metric: https://www.mbn-gmbh.de/de/dnl/stand...katalog.62.pdf
    Copper: https://www.bikar.com/kupfer-bleche.html
    It is mostly what ever the customer wants. If you want 2.5mm steel sheet metal - than that is what you order.
    If for some reason you want 2.543mm - you would have a problem - but depending on ordering quantity you should be able to find someone to roll it for you.If you need 1.5mm brass sheet - than that is what you order. If you nee 1mm aluminum sheet, than order 1mm aluminum.
    Now here is a look at the system we have in the US:Sheet Metal Gauge Chart | Metal Supermarkets - Steel, Aluminum, Stainless, Hot-Rolled, Cold-Rolled, Alloy, Carbon, Galvanized, Brass, Bronze, Copper
    No comment needed or can somebody explain having all those "Gauges".

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gordon B. Clarke View Post
    "At this time, only three countries—Burma, Liberia, and the US—have not adopted the International System of Units (SI, or metric system) as their official system of weights and measures."
    I'm not sure what the implication is. As if we don't know what it is, or that we should use a 19mm wrench on a 3/4" bolt head? Auto manufacturers? Is that the point of reference for all things made in the USA? Tell them, not me.

    We (the US) use whatever is in front of us. We know the difference between 1/2" and 2/4".

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    In the beginning...
    There were several Metric Systems.
    The German Metric, the Italian Metric .. and so on...
    Then came the advent of the Unified Metric system.
    This put them all on the same system.
    But, them old shop owners did not throw their beloved equipment out.
    It hasn't been long that I took a job, and as far as I can tell... it was based on Spanish Metric System.
    So, just filling you in here...
    There used to be a bag-full of metric systems prior to the Unified Metric System.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snowshooze View Post
    In the beginning...
    There were several Metric Systems.
    The German Metric, the Italian Metric .. and so on...
    Then came the advent of the Unified Metric system.
    This put them all on the same system.
    But, them old shop owners did not throw their beloved equipment out.
    It hasn't been long that I took a job, and as far as I can tell... it was based on Spanish Metric System.
    So, just filling you in here...
    There used to be a bag-full of metric systems prior to the Unified Metric System.
    You are trying to pull leg
    Before metric system europe used inches. Gazillinons of them. Switzerland alone had 38 regional definitions of feet. Dutch feet was 11 dutch inches and so on.

    And US survey inch used today is still the ”good old” non-metrificated US inch.
    US survey inch is 1.000002 metric inches ( not same as IMPERIAL or uk inch..)

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    But, but, but; is it OK to say your cup is 0.5 full?



    Quote Originally Posted by michiganbuck View Post
    First off make pizza and apple pie only divided to 10 pieces and never claim your cup is half full.

    but do agree having two standards is wasteful for screw threads.

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    Quote Originally Posted by EPAIII View Post
    But, but, but; is it OK to say your cup is 0.5 full?
    As far as I know, the only time half is not half, is when you are talking to your ex-wife. Half is still half---EVEN in Millimeters.

    R

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    Quote Originally Posted by PegroProX440 View Post
    I did not watch the youtube link but its my understanding that our imperial standards are all calibrated to a metric standard. I think that switched in the 70's or something
    We had to do something for calibration standards. We ran out of king's that were the standards for the inch, foot and yard.

    Tom

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    If this forum can do one thing for the cause of education, I would hope it could be to expose the greatest number of readers to the difference between decimals and metrics/

    Factors of ten do NOT define the metric system.
    What Imperial machinist does not use .001" as a base of measurement?

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