Of course the Metric System is still in place, most of the world uses
However, the US refusing to use it and your manufacturing being moved to
China is resulting in a resurgence of your illogical US imperial system
around the world.
Very true, John!
My local engineers merchant stocks the two sizes of metric bolts, plus
tools etc to suit.
They stock gas threads and probably a few things I don't know about.
All the other thread types, BA, UNF, UNC and a hundred other types, are
parallels to Metric - extra types that the merchant has to decide
whether or not to stock. That's higher investment costs for no extra
The only reason to stock them is to supply replacements for old
equipment, a need that slowly diminishes.
UNF doesn't do anything that the metric equivalent doesn't, other than
fit into my UNF fitted equipment.
Your arms outstretched are almost exactly equal to your height.
A extended stride is equal to your height.
For me, they equal a distance mid-way between 6 feet and two metres.
I'm unsure what that proves.
On 1/19/2008 11:28 AM Greg Procter spake thus:
OK, so it's something of a pain in the ass (arse); but is that really a
show-stopper? You're going to spend some bux on the machine, so what's
the extra fifty cents (figuratively speaking) for a few bolts?
I'm sure you're not the only one in the world facing these kinds of
compatibility problems. People seem to have figured out how to carry on
despite them for ages now.
I've got a workshop wall of tins of metric bolts.
I've got metric and UNF lathes and milling machines side by side,
tooling in metric sizes and tooling in US sizes.
Generally they won't go together even though they look the same. If I
mix them the problem just gets worse and worse.
Tasks stop for weeks because I don't have the required 50c bolt.
Sure, that's exactly why metrics were developed and made standard!
On 1/19/2008 12:40 PM Greg Procter spake thus:
Well, I thought of a tip for you I forgot to post in the last message:
When you buy new bolts, paint the heads to color-code them: say, red for
UNF, yellow for metric, etc., etc. Ought to make your job a little easier.
On 1/19/2008 12:50 PM Brian Smith spake thus:
Actually, I represent that remark.
It's not an "abortion", but rather an accretion, a collection of
measurement units with historical roots. Most of which I, as a USAn
consumer, have absolutely no problem with using. Seems to work fine for
most of us here. The only folks I hear clamoring for metrification are
usually pointy-headed scientific types. Ordinary consumers seem
perfectly content with pints, quarts, inches, miles, yards, and so on.
In fact, a lot of us *prefer* our binary (powers-of-two) and
duodecimal-based units. Carpenters, for instance, find it easier to use
a system where division by 2, 3 and 4 is easy; division by 10 is not an
advantage here. (There's lots of material written on this out there, so
please don't take my word for it.)
One of the things usually overlooked by the go-metric zealots is the
fact that nobody is stopping US manufacturers from going metric all on
their own. If it's such an all-fired superior system, then why hasn't
industry here adopted it by now? That's not exactly a ringing
endorsement of SI.
There's far too much made of the "logic" of the metric system. The thing
is, that those who tout the logic of the metric system think of a
measuring system as a thing in itself, somehow divorced from human use.
Measuring systems were made for human use, and any system that meets
human needs is good. The very thing that makes the metric system logical
is irrelevant for most human uses. The most common use of measured
quantities is in buying and selling. It's significant IMO that the
typical quantities of traded goods are pretty much what they've always
been, just measured in different units. Eg, a loaf of bread weighs about
1lb, because that's a handy size for handling and slicing.
Does it matter that in the metric system conversion between units is
easy? Very, very little. Even the people who find this feature handy
(eg, technical people) don't do it all that often. Most of the time you
just don't convert between units, because there is no need to do so.
For the vast majority of human uses, standard sizes and dimensions are
far more important than the units used to measure them. (Footnote)
Consider the standard intermodal shipping containers. These are all
specified in feet, because the ultimately successful version was
designed in the USA. Does this faze anybody anywhere? Of course not. It
doesn't matter where the containers are made, they all fit the latching
and lockdown devices on truck frames, railcars, etc. That's all that
It would be nice to have all kinds of other standards, and the ISO is
working on it. It's slow going, because no matter what standards are
adopted, someone is going to have change their tooling. The cost of
doing that may outweigh any supposed advantage of common standards,
especially if different markets have different expectations. Also,
"proprietary formats" may be held to have an advantage greater than
conformance to a common standard.
For the record, I use both imperial and metric units, depending on my
needs and desires. I see no reason to be limited to one or the other of
these systems. Is this illogical? Of course it is. So what? I'm a human
Footnote: I recently built a new computer. That is, I bought a bunch of
parts, and bolted and plugged them together. This was possible because
things like the spacing of cooling fan bolts is standard. I don't know
whether this spacing is specified in mm or in inches, and I neither care
nor need to know which it is. Just so the part fits.
Nope. The metric system was developed during the French Revolution
because the French wanted a complete break with their past. They even
proposed a decimalised time system, and decimalised measure of angles.
Fortunately, in those areas wiser heads prevailed.
Eventually, the metric system was adopted in Europe because they wanted
a unified system for trade, but didn't want to adopt some one country's
system. Britain didn't need to go along with that at the time because it
had the largest share of international trade anyhow.
Since its inception, the metric system has undergone a number of
changes. The current international metric system is called SI (Systeme
But measuring systems are not standards. Standards are administered by a
number of national and international bodies, of which ISO is currently
the best known. Many things are still not standardised despite an
obvious need to do so, but many more don't need to be. The mania for
standardisation that has gripped the European Union is a international joke.
It makes no difference how standards are measured, as long everyone to
whom they matter adheres to them. That's the real issue, not whether you
work in mm or inches.
On Sun, 20 Jan 2008 06:17:38 +1300, I said, "Pick a card, any card"
and Greg Procter instead replied:
Except I use km in speech exclusively here in Oz. Have since I got
here. I'm bilingual that way. All the road direction signs are in km
but people still talk using miles. When I refer to distances in the
US, I often use both to be sure they have a real idea of the
distance being described.
Except your unequivocal statement above didn't indicate that some
don't speak that way out of laziness. Some of them probably have
that sort of built in calculator that I seem to have. I visualize
distances in both metric and Imperial quite easily and only use math
when I'm not sure.
Then their teachers fell down on the job. They should have been
taught all manner of other systems including Troy, Avoirdupois,
Imperial and English(Old). And others.
Same here. My wife still uses stones to estimate weight. Amazingly,
so does my GP. Then he records things in metric. Funny that.