Re: Cheap Vs. Expensive Measurment Tools
Wow, something I actually know something about.
Remember, this is all based on the assumption that you'll be using the Mic 3-4 times, Indicator 5-6 times, and the Calipers 40-50 times per year.
I'd recommend you just skip the Mic for now and invest that money in a good DIAL caliper. Mitutoyo, Starrett, and B&S all seem to be nice gauges. I've heard newer B&S aren't as solid as they used to be, but that's purely hear-say.
Unless you can afford a complete set of quality Mic's, up to 6" at least, you'd be better off using a good caliper that you can trust. Are you really going to be measuring anything down to the 1/10th?
As for the indicator, watch MSC's website for clearance items. I bought a cheap 1" travel and mag base with fine adjust for less than the price of a mag base alone, $15 or $20 I think. You can use the cheap indicator for a couple of years then replace it with a good one after your funds are replenished. Over the first few years it will be accurate to within .001" which is more than good enough for your application. After that it can be used in nasty conditions or to get things close before switching to your new high dollar one.
When you're ready for a good indicator, get either a starret or interapid. .0005" graduation is plenty close enough, and with them you get .030" total travel which is nice. 1/10th is overkill unless you're a tool maker, IMO.
Also, you can always ship them to me for calibration if you are feeling really anal about it. [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]