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I picked one from Amazon for around $30. There are dozens of these, all kind of the same. I used Fakespot to pick one with decent reviews. Reviews said the battery drains while on or off so I remove the battery when I put it away. I've used it a lot for modeling and it's perfectly accurate for my purposes.
What I like about it, uh... it works, it was cheap, and it includes a case.
I got some digital 4" off amazon made by a company called igaging, they measure the same and repeat just as well as my brown and sharpe calipers.
Here is the same thing I have but the 6" version. [link]
"Engineering Degree" really isn't enough information for a good response, so you need to clarify, seriously!
iGaging Digital Calipers [link]
If you buy calipers, get a brand that's known to be higher-quality. The cheapest digital calipers are many cheap Chinese calipers aren't very good.
I would leave the e-steps alone if they're correct. In order to do a flow cube you need to measure the thickness of 1 or 2 walls, so you need calipers. I recommend these, they've performed really well for me
The most often recommended set of digital calipers out there, by far the best in the low cost range.
This one seems to get recommended a lot:
The harbor freight ones are known to drain the battery even when "off" because they don't actually turn off, they only turn the display off. This iGaging one is reported to properly power off so a battery can last years of occasional usage.
I bought an inexpensive but well-reviewed digital caliper off Amazon (igaging brand) and it works great. I did notice it drains the battery when off...so I just pull the little battery carrier out when not in use and it fits separately right inside the case. Takes a second and no big deal.
I rocked the $9 Harbor Freight ones for several years in my woodshop, and for the first 6 months in my new 3d printing hobby. It works, but it's definitely low quality. It lacks several features, like a persistent encoder (where it knows where the caliper is positioned after cycling the power so you don't always have to close it and zero it), and it chews through batteries so you have to stock up on those as well. It's also pretty rattley--low manufacturing tolerances make for a loose fitting tool. But for $9, you can't beat it.
Recently upgraded to a $30 pair (that has that persistent encoder as well as a much larger screen) that is like 10 times better quality-wise than the HF one. If you want to splurge (without going whole-hog on a Mitutoyo set) here's the link.
I've got the same calipers, with the same issues.
I lubed mine up with a couple of drops of WD-40 (yea, yea, I know, but it worked) to get the grime out, and just don't use the scale.
As for accuracy, I have checked it against my feeler gauges, and I'm not a machinist, anyway; I'm using it to check rotor thickness to see if I can get them turned or if they need to be changed.
These are on my wish list: [link]
I have this ~25 dollar iGaging:
For quick checks, sanity checks, basic stuff, etc. 20 dollar calipers are fine. My iGaging rarely disagrees with the calibrated Mitutoyo's in our quality department.
This won't give you an immediate answer, but a caliper would tell you and they are handy to have around.
Even a super cheap harbor freight one would do. Personally, I like my not as cheap as it could be, but far from costly set.
Oh and get a valve cap.
I'm shopping for a digital caliper myself, Mitutoyo is the gold standard, but at a quarter of the price, so far the iGaging seems to be the best dollar for dollar. I've been watching some YouTube reviews and it seems to match the precision of the Mitutoyo.
I'm a cnc machinist and these impressed me a lot. I highly recommend them for anyone's shop
I just bought some calipers from Amazon for about $30. Can someone explain to me how these Mitutoyo calipers that cost >$100 are better than my $30 ones?
I bought a pair of iGaging digitals, better quality that HF for convenience. When I need more accuracy I use my older Mitutoyo or Starrett dial calipers. Mitutoyo is still pretty top notch, I've heard bad things about Starrett from a friend that ordered a pair in the past couple years.
I have the large display ones and I think they're great! I would say they are the middle ground between the cheap-ass chinese ones and Mitutoyo. I mainly use the Harbor Freight ones for scribing and working on greasy things. I use my iGaging ones for when I need a good measurement. I am a hobbyist though, not a professional.
iGaging also makes an anglecube which is very handy.
> Kinda difficult to measure such small dimensions to the accuracy needed
Calipers. Measure and cut. I think that's all there is to it.
I cant' speak for other people, but in my case, I have an interest in building and making things outside of work, so I have invested time into learning how to use Fusion 360, and also purchased calipers (specifically this one) to get accurate measurements.
For this particular model, I had the broken part, and could measure everything using the pieces I had and the calipers. Using those measurements I could use Fusion 360 to model the part.
If you want to get started with making your own things, I would suggest first learning a program like Fusion. Tinkercad is a great starting point for people with no 3D modeling experience because it's free and is easier than a CAD program. Once you are comfortable with that, I would start tinkering with Fusion 360. Maker's Muse has a playlist that was helpful for me.
From there, it's whatever you think of to create.
Here’s the one in the video. $29. iGaging IP54 Electronic Digital Caliper 0-6" Display Inch/Metric/Fractions Stainless Steel Body [link]
I have this one [link]
It's great, battery lasts about 6 months. Nice case as well.
I've had these [link]
for 3 years now and they have been great
Get some cheap calipers from Amazon and model small items that look interesting. You'll learn a lot this way as you'll come across features that you don't know how to create and need to research methods on YouTube. There's a ton of content out there for Fusion.
I buy these for my interns and they're quite nice for $30.
Oops wrong link. This one [link]
I bought this 3 years ago, it works well for what I need it for. measuring plastic aluminum, and wood. The best feature is it goes mm, inch and fractional inch when i need equivalence for drill sizes. Battery life is probably my biggest complaint, even that isn't too bad.
This is actually the first time doing a box liner like this. I explain my process in this comment here: [link]
It's actually not super hard, it just takes a lot of patience to get it just right. I was shaving off like a half a hairs width at a time to get the length. It's always best to creep up on it, VERY slowly in this case. I used a stop block clamped on the crosscut sled, and moved it the tiniest visible amount at a time. Like, a fraction of a hair line at a time. Fitting in the slot was a bit more forgiving using the method I described in that comment. I think the key to this is making sure the box itself is totally square to begin with. When I glued the sides on, I cut spacer blocks just to make sure it would be equal on both ends, which I think helped a lot.
I also recommend every woodworker gets themselves a pair of digital calipers. I found a nice cheap one on Amazon and I use it in the shop ALL the time. I LOVE this thing [link]
Maybe don’t get ones quite that cheap, but you can get good ones under $30. I have a pair of these and they have always read exactly the same as the calibrated Starrett ones at work: [link]
Don't get "no name" / "weird name" brands or untested models.
[link] (iGaging, step down from Absolute model)
[link] (iGaging Absolute, great product)
Listen: this time I am going to help you out but please understand much of this hobby is learning to do stuff for yourself. There is a ton of problem solving based on intuition, ability to search for others solutions, and taking shit apart. You will not have very much fun if you aren't willing to put in the work.
For the time being just fold up pieces of paper to shim the feet. You really need a carpenters square and a line level to make sure everything is square.
Start with the table. If the surface you are trying to level your system on isn't level then leveling the system is going to be impossible. You want gravity to help you not hurt you.
Here is the link for z braces.
I also highly recommend this mod
Once those are installed and properly calibrated then everything on the frame should be square.
Next step is to get have you system properly trammed. That is essentially leveling the build plate to the extruder. With the pressed sheet metal plate on there it cannot be done properly. You need to get a much thicker aluminum carriage. Somebody else in this thread already offered to sell you one. I for one am a big fan of supporting the maker community and think you should take him up on that offer as the same thing online costs about the same amount.
Here are the tools you need to be successful in this endeavor. A proper magnetic line level. I got mine at harbor freight for a few dollars. A carpenter's square the bigger the better IMO about 1 foot on each side. And a good pair of calipers. The calipers are the most expensive tool on this list but you don't need top of the line Mitotuyos. At work we have the Mits but at home I use these.
If you are willing to put the time in this hobby is great, very informative, and useful for all times of machining in the future.
Good luck I wish you well.
Most definitely. I find new uses for it all the time and they were pretty cheap!
iGaging IP54 Electronic Digital Caliper 0-6" Display Inch/Metric/Fractions Stainless Steel Body [link]
You definitely want to get a set of calipers. Pretty much the second requirement for 3D modeling functional prints, right behind the modeling software. I have this set.
And speaking of the modeling software, I recommend Fusion 360. It's free for hobbyists (and most other people too) and there are a lot of tutorials for it.
I have an older iGaging brand of digital calipers, but the newer models look very nice, per this review. Avoid cheap crappy models from CHINA, per other videos by the same person that made this review. A good model should last you a very long time.
I'm using this. Seems to be pretty accurate, as far as I can tell.
It's one of (these) laid out in a straight line instead of around the perimeter of a circular disc.
That's how these electronic digital calipers work. An optical sensor watches tick marks go by when you slide the jaws apart/together.
One of the handiest tools I own are these digital calipers. There are also cheaper ones available for under $14.
I just bought [link] the other day
The ones I got: [link]
I'm pleased and they have good reviews.
Had no luck finding any hardware store in the county that went that small, but lucky me, my New digital calipers came in, so I was able to measure the ones I have.
Ended up ordering a 10-pack of these from McMaster. Now I'm crossing my fingers that I got it right, and that they don't screw me on shipping. :D
I second that recommendation. I'm constantly using this one to measure vape related hardware, including figuring out screw thread dimensions.
Knowing that he made a 4 ft x 4 ft cnc machine, I would venture to guess it would be a cnc router and he is planning to mainly cut wood and maybe some aluminum. That said I really wouldn't buy expensive machinist tools if you wanted to better budget your money.
Here are some stuff that can be made on a cnc router:
I'm assuming he may have told you what kind of stuff he could build or wanted to build when he said he wanted to build one. If it was for wood projects, then you can get a good 6 in. digital caliper under $40, such as these:
I have the large readout version of that one by the way.
Not sure what he plans to use for clamping his stuff down to the table, but here's a great option:
OK, you built a cnc router, but what do you make? Here are some 3D files for purchase:
This 3D router bit set will work for sign making (not sure what diameter bit he needs, and also add some spiral bits)
This is a great work shop apron because these shoulder straps are more comfortable than the ones the just go around your neck. Also the mesh pockets let saw dust fall out instead of collecting in there.
If your not sure what he plans to cut them a gift card is always welcomed.