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Guitar Measurements are Imperative for Successful Repairs and New Guitar Builds. When Measuring Electric Guitar Parts, a General Knowledge of Math, Measuring Devices and the Two Major Numeric Systems is Essential. Every Phase of Guitar Building and Guitar Electronics Requires Pinpoint Accuracy.
We are always asked, "what the best shop tool for measuring?", The answer is whatever you have laying around at the moment. But, there is a time to upgrade for better results.
Famous Mass Produced Guitar Manufacturers to upstart CNC Guitar shops have to use the same style measuring devices as used in most home shops, basements and garages.
Correct Guitar measurements require accurate measuring tools. The Right tool for the job is great, but for those without a fully stocked shop, being able adapt on the fly while getting the right specs is possible.
A builder, just starting out, could do almost any measurements needed with a Home Improvement Store Yard Stick, a one foot School Ruler and a Tape Measure. But, there are tools for not a lot of money that can greatly improve a builders odds of success.
Great deals on accurate tools can be found in decent used condition at thrift stores, yard sales or on eBay. eBay has sellers providing New tools that can get a project dialed in quickly and accurately for very little cash.
For the long Body, Neck and Scale Length measurements a builder can use the yard stick or tape measure, but a Straight Edge Ruler can provide very good results.
The advantage of a Straight Edge over a wooden Yard Stick is No warping causing incorrect measurements and the advantage over a Tape measure is the rigidity for a precise flat measure.
One thing to remember when shops upgrade to new measuring tools they usually keep the old school pieces for specific chores for which they've grown accustomed.
Not mandatory, but for super close measurements in the thousandths of an inch range nothing can beat a good set of micrometers for thickness and spacing chores.
This one was picked up at a garage sale for a couple of bucks and is used for a variety of tasks.
It's amazing that this great little 6" ruler usually found tucked into an engineer's pocket protector, turns out to be one of the most used measuring devices in the shop.
If you find one snatch it up. It is highly useful for a myriad of quick measures and double checks before doing installs, drills and cuts.
and the winner is. . . . .
But, when we're asked, "what is the #1 most used measuring device in the shop?", it is hands down the Digital Caliper!
We used to use the old school mechanical Vernier Calipers that you'd have to look closely at the little lines and do a little math to find out the measurements. It was always necessary to re-measure to verify that the process was correct.
Not with the Digital Caliper. The easy to see digital readout gives the measurement in both Inches and Metric.
There are a number of styles and lengths available for not a lot of money. We prefer the 6" model as shown. It will measure 90% of the small items and spaces in a guitar shop repair or build.
It's a great investment that if taken care of (and NOT used as a clamp) will last a long time.
There are a lot of small measurements on guitars and parts involved in a guitar project.
The Caliper's larger jaws on the bottom are for outside Dimensions of an object and the smaller jaws
on the top are for measuring inside of small spaces and holes.
The digital caliper and a quality steel ruler are good first choice upgrades for the novice builder.