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Paracord Measuring Tape Idea

Discussion in 'MultiTools and Other Pocket Tools' started by foxy, May 11, 2006.

  1. foxy

    foxy Empty Pockets

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    I havnt tried this but it seems like a good idea in theory.

    Take a length of 550 cord (say 10 feet) and tie a knot at 1 foot increments. If you want to measure something, like the other day I wanted to measure a piece of furniture at office depot, you can easily know how many feet something is.

    As for how many inches, it should be simple enough to bend the final 1 foot section in half or quarters. Basically lets say the desk is 5 feet and 3 inches long. If you took the 550 cord "measuring tape"' it would have 5 complete 1 foot sections and a small bit into the next 6th section.

    If you take the 6th section and fold it in half (just line up the 6th and 5th knots) then you know what the 5 foot 6 inch mark is. If you fold that section in half one more time, you know the 5 foot 3 inch mark.

    I havnt done this in reality, only in my head but I imagine you can estimate to the nearest 3" ( 1/4 foot) this way. I wouldnt want to keep folding it because then it would get too messy and inaccurate but for the purposes of a blunt measurement, it should work.

    Then take one of the cool mini clips from Berkeley Point and attach it to one end so you can attach this to the end of something you want to measure.

    Also clip it to your belt or keyring. Tie the cord down in a daisy chain to quick release it when needed and the overall length chained up will probably be a few inches only by an inch diameter. Should make a decent keyring FOB since I used to use a similar length piece of 550 cord daisy chained into a small cool looking helix - however the 11 knots may impede the creation of a tight daisy chain.

    I am probably going to try this with the spectra cord I recently ordered from Berkeley Point as its thinner than 550 cord (its only 2.7mm thin).

    Of course it makes much more sense to carry a mini tape measure if you do a lot of measuring, but I do not, and the cord is multipurpose, obviously and you can make a new "paracord measuring tape" in a couple minutes if you needed to use the one you carry for rope work.

    On further thought it might be better to mark the 1 foot sections in some sort of ink so that you dont have to unknot the 1 foot markers if you need to use it as cord, but 1) the ink might fade off over time, 2) for the purposes of pocket cord, you probably can use it with the knots every foot for whatever purpose you need provided it isnt load bearing since each knot reduces the strength of the rope by a substantial percentage, effectively turning the 550 cord into "50" cord after you have a dozen knots in it.
     
  2. shoeblade

    shoeblade Empty Pockets

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    That's a good idea, when you come to the last knot you could also use a ruler to measure the remaining part.
    The only problem with string as a measuring device is that it stretches. I know you not making a precision device but it may add up to a few inches depending on the percent stretch.

    Try this trick, it should be less bulky to carry and more accurate:
    Get a pocket machinists ruler like:
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00004T7SW/qid=1147386604/sr=8-1/ref=pd_bbs_1/104-5318123-8867111?%5Fencoding=UTF8&v=glance&n=228013
    You can get this at home depot or sears as well.

    Lay the ruler at the end of what your measuring

    Then flip the ruler end over end counting the number of times you do so

    At the end multiply the flips times the ruler length and add the bit you get at the end.

    Viola, you get the length.
     
  3. RoninPimp

    RoninPimp Loaded Pockets

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    That is actually mankind's first measuring tape... :)
     
  4. Styerman

    Styerman Empty Pockets

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    Minor problem , nylon stretches , but should still be usefull .

    Chris
     
  5. Fozzy

    Fozzy Loaded Pockets

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    True- Spectra isn't as stretchy IIRC. Paracord should be OK too. It's not like it would be a precision instrument anyway- It's a heck of an idea!
     
  6. 1331

    1331 Empty Pockets

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    There is someone who manufactures a similar tape of 1/16" coated steel cable (several hundred feet) with crimped on copper tags stamped with numbers for laying out agricultural fields, etc. I have a machinist rule cut to 3 1/2" with end rounded placed in my wallet for small measuring.
     
  7. DUQ

    DUQ Loaded Pockets

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    Courier's have been using that sort of thing for many years now. They use it to measure boxes to see if they falls under their shipping regulations ie: LxWxH
     
  8. Prof. Ed

    Prof. Ed Empty Pockets

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    There a nice leather covered tapes that can be EDCed easily. Coach and Fossil both made one. I carry one or the other in my bag or pocket.