Lee Valley Tools Woodworking Newsletter
Vol. 2, Issue 3
January 2008
From the Collection

Oversized Micrometer
Oversized micrometer with miniature plow plane

Often, a common tool appears that is somewhat of a mystery because of its size. Initially, one might think it is a manufacturer's display unit or an exceptional piece of whimsy intended to exhibit an individual builder's skill. The physical appearance of such an object is almost always in scale (proportion) to the original object, and, in most instances, the ability to copy the original's function is the desired result of the building exercise.

End view   Micrometer barrel

The micrometer shown is such an example. Professionally made, it has been assembled using pegged tenons and employs correct wood orientation for its laminations to eliminate warping. The timber appears to be European beech. The micrometer barrel has been made to allow its free turning, just as in a smaller example. There is also a finely cut, oversized wooden thread and corresponding nut that allow the main spindle to advance in the same manner as a regular-sized micrometer. Close examination shows that the graduations on the main body correspond to the metric system. For example, the number two that is written on the body represents two centimetres. The barrel is correctly marked with 100 lines representing 100 millimetres. The main spindle advance is tied to the marked graduations, allowing proper coarse readings to be taken. However, the barrel is not tied to the main spindle advancement, so readings to the millimetre cannot be verified.

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