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pbender
30th Sep 2004, 08:43 AM
Perhaps this web page will help.

http://convert.french-property.co.uk/

This isn't actually a complete set of units, but it gives the basic units of measure, including the differences between US measure and Imperial measure for volume.

As far as using mixed units and fractions for measurements, you'll just have to get used to that. We generally use these units to measure with, not to do calculations. If we're doing calculations, we have to turn everything into one unit, including changing the fractional part to a decimal if we're using a calculator, and then perform the necessary operations.

Unfortunatly, the US isn't going to be converting to the metric system anytime soon. In many ways, I wish we would. It certainly is easier to teach than the Imperial system of measurment is.

Paul

Bryan
30th Sep 2004, 09:22 AM
Using 4-15/16" as an example, my aproach would be:

((1

ReptilianFeline
30th Sep 2004, 09:37 AM
So... 1 foot = 12 in
1 yd = 3 ft
1 mile = 1760 yd

OK... the inches, feet and yard can be devided with a unit of 3, but who came up with the mile?

The old way of measuring is based on the human body. 1 foot is the lengt of a normal man about 500 years ago or so. I don't know why an inch is called an inch, but if translated into Swedish it's called thumb, and an inch is roughly the length of the first part of the thumb of a grown man.

All those anchient measurements are logical if you don't know how to calculate very well, you just count out when you measure, 1 +1 +1 +1 etc.

The metric system is more based on mathematics, so when the first standard units were described, they had an actual piece of metal to measure from. Then they found conversions based on the number of waves in certain atoms and so on. That's why we can measure things so exactly in science.

I don't know why the US is having such a problem moving from one system to another. As far as I know Australia has done so and the UK is "bi-lingual". Math-class in the US must be a lot harder than in Sweden. I really feel sorry for you. I thought there was some kind of pattern, like maybe a hexa-decimal system or something, but I can't find it.

Normally... how do you think... do you think in mixed measuers and fractions, or "decimally"?

Bryan
30th Sep 2004, 10:18 AM
I guess I was lucky... I did first part of my schooling in imperial units, then Australia converted to metric, so I got the rest in metric...
I know both equally as well and am comfortable using either... the funny thing is, once I finished school, the first thing I worked with was aircraft, which where all imperial, so I had to go back to that...

A handy desktop conversion tool can be found at:
http://www.joshmadison.com/software/convert/

pbender
30th Sep 2004, 11:11 AM
OK... the inches, feet and yard can be devided with a unit of 3, but who came up with the mile?


It's origins are similar to other dimentions in the imperial system of measurement. I just don't know the story of how it came to be called a mile.



The old way of measuring is based on the human body. 1 foot is the lengt of a normal man about 500 years ago or so. I don't know why an inch is called an inch, but if translated into Swedish it's called thumb, and an inch is roughly the length of the first part of the thumb of a grown man.


Oh, it gets better... In medieval times, you might have two (or more) workers constructing a building, each measuring with thier own body. so, two people would measure a foot, and actually have a different length, because thier feet aren't the same length.

All of these were actually standardized baised on a measurement to a specific individual. If I recall correctly, it was a british king, So, one inch is actually the length of his thumb from the tip to the first joint.



All those anchient measurements are logical if you don't know how to calculate very well, you just count out when you measure, 1 +1 +1 +1 etc.


But, this is how all measurment is done...



The metric system is more based on mathematics, so when the first standard units were described, they had an actual piece of metal to measure from. Then they found conversions based on the number of waves in certain atoms and so on. That's why we can measure things so exactly in science.


You can actually get very accurate measurements with any system of measure. In all measurement, you have to do some estimation. Exactly how much depends on the precision of your instraments.

The imperial system today is just as standardized as the metric system, only the conversion factors between size units of the same type differ.

The metric system is really only easier to use if you are doing calculations. Having the different size conversions be multiples of ten allows for more canceling.



I don't know why the US is having such a problem moving from one system to another. As far as I know Australia has done so and the UK is "bi-lingual". Math-class in the US must be a lot harder than in Sweden. I really feel sorry for you. I thought there was some


The US is bi-lingual in a sense as well. Most US scientists use the metric system.

You occasionally see signs on the side of the road with metric distances. (usually a sign that says "city 100 miles" on one line then "city 160 km" on the next.)

Mathmatics isn't any harder here. We all play by the same rules, changing the names doesn't really change how the numbers behave.



kind of pattern, like maybe a hexa-decimal system or something, but I can't find it.


Nope, no patterns. It gets even worse when you move beyond the basic units of measure....



Normally... how do you think... do you think in mixed measuers and fractions, or "decimally"?

When I estimate how long things are, I always think in imperial units. Now, I could just as easily estimate in metric, but that's not how I was taught when I grew up. I didn't really start using the metric system until science classes in high school.

Paul

sandjam
30th Sep 2004, 01:31 PM
Perhaps the easiest way to explain it is this way.
Where the metric system is a base 10 system, the SAE system is a base 12 system.
12 inches = 1 foot
3 feet = 1 yard
5280ft./1760yd. = 1 mile

With fractions, the inch is generally broken into equal segments of 64ths.
i.e. 1/64, 1/32, 3/64, 1/16, 5/64, 3/32, 7/64, 1/8, etc

SKMoss
30th Sep 2004, 02:03 PM
RF,

Not sure what the base reason for the quesiton is. But I wrote and applicaion a while back that will convert from metric to standard US units. Also to and form scale dimentions. To and from scale speeds. And will calc gradients and risers. If it would help. I'll fire you off a copy.

Steve

BikerDad
30th Sep 2004, 03:46 PM
Origin of the Mile:


mile (mi) [1]
a traditional unit of distance. The word comes from the Latin word for 1000, mille, because originally a mile was the distance a Roman legion could march in 1000 paces (or 2000 steps, a pace being the distance between successive falls of the same foot). There is some uncertainty about the length of the Roman mile. Based on the Roman foot of 29.6 centimeters and assuming a standard pace of 5 Roman feet, the Roman mile would have been 1480 meters (4856 feet); however, the measured distance between surviving milestones of Roman roads is often closer to 1520 meters or 5000 feet. In any case, miles of similar lengths were used throughout Western Europe. In medieval Britain, several mile units were used, including a mile of 5000 feet (1524 meters), the modern mile defined as 8 furlongs (1609 meters), and a longer mile similar to the French mille (1949 meters), plus the Scottish mile (1814 meters) and the Irish mile (2048 meters). In 1592, Parliament settled the question in England by defining the statute mile to be 8 furlongs, 80 chains, 320 rods, 1760 yards or 5280 feet. The statute mile is exactly 1609.344 meters. In athletics, races of 1500 or 1600 meters are often called metric miles. See also nautical mile.
http://www.unc.edu/~rowlett/units/dictM.html

See, even the mile has a "rational" basis. Okay, in reality, all of our measurement systems are based on arbitrary foundations. The metric system is arbitrarily based on the size of the Earth.
Originally, the meter was designed to be one ten-millionth of a quadrant, the distance between the Equator and the North Pole Just as arbitrary is the decision to make the Metric Sytem a base10 system. Why go with base10? Because it triumphed over any other systems over the course of human usage because we have (generally) 10 toes and 10 fingers, making counting to 10 simple. If we had only 8, then our core numbering system would be base8.

The metric system has the advantage of internal consistency, and the disadvantage of lacking character, of being boring.

Atouk
30th Sep 2004, 06:05 PM
I need to ask, I just need to ask...

In the metric system everything is devided into 10, like this:
1 meter (m) = 10 decimeter (dm) = 10 centimeter (cm) = 10 millimeter (mm).
or
10 mm = 1 cm
10 cm = 1 dm
10 dm = 1 m

Easy to count in your head or on your fingers, and easy to convert, just move the decimal point one step; 19 mm = 1.9 cm = 0.19 dm = 0.019 m
Now... normally we skip the decimeter when talking about length.

Hola Rep,

I'm afraid I have nothing much to say to you... I gladly enjoy of the Metrical System as well!!!! :D

siderod
30th Sep 2004, 10:49 PM
Perhaps the easiest way to explain it is this way.
Where the metric system is a base 10 system, the SAE system is a base 12 system.
12 inches = 1 foot
3 feet = 1 yard
5280ft./1760yd. = 1 mile


ummm....3 isn't 12 :twisted: Shouldn't SAE be Base 3? Because 3 feet per yard...and 12 (3x4) inches to the foot, etc.....awww well, just another dealy to confuse ol siderod more and more

Andrew
**currently studying Standard Deviation, Normal Distribution, Histograms, Algebra and more in Math10**

alco_haulic
1st Oct 2004, 12:05 AM
Metric is t probably the only logical system, i mean which is more logical, a measuring system based on the length of someones limb, or one based upon the one thing absolutely nescesary for our existance in this universe?

But being a modeller, i must say that being conversant in both systems tends to be a major advantage. While i'm not old enough to remember Imperial (not US Imperial) in australia(changed to metric about ten years before i was born), my parents always tended to use imperial, so i'm quite conversant in both. As for modelling, i tend to prefer using metric for really small dimensions as it's easier to use.

But don't get me started with the british and thier mixing of metric and imperial, eg 2mm to the Foot.

Kanone5
1st Oct 2004, 12:30 AM
So... 1 foot = 12 in
The metric system is more based on mathematics, so when the first standard units were described, they had an actual piece of metal to measure from. Then they found conversions based on the number of waves in certain atoms and so on. That's why we can measure things so exactly in science.

Very good point. Not exactly based on mathematics per se but more based on "standards of nature". The aspect of wieght or mass has not even been touched upon yet in this discussion :shock: but consider this

1 cubic cm of H2O at 1 standard atmosphere = 1 gram exactly

-PJ

Kanone5
1st Oct 2004, 12:35 AM
For modeling I guess I always use 1.89mm = 1 nscale ft
very strange now that I look at it, oh well :?
-PJ

pbender
1st Oct 2004, 01:26 AM
Perhaps the easiest way to explain it is this way.
Where the metric system is a base 10 system, the SAE system is a base 12 system.
12 inches = 1 foot
3 feet = 1 yard
5280ft./1760yd. = 1 mile


ummm....3 isn't 12 :twisted: Shouldn't SAE be Base 3? Because 3 feet per yard...and 12 (3x4) inches to the foot, etc.....awww well, just another dealy to confuse ol siderod more and more


Ok class, it's time for a lesson or two.

First, Both the metric system AND the Imperial System are BASE 10 values. (BTW, it is NOT THE SAE SYSTEM. As a group, they are "English" or "Imperial" units).

Second, The problem that RF, and perhaps others who didn't grow up with the English system, have is that the conversion factors between units of the same type of quantity (length,mass,volume,etc) aren't uniform like they are in the metric system. In the metric system, all you really need to know to convert between units of a given type is what the prefixes stand for, and then you can multiply (or divide) by the appropriate power of 10.

Finally,

If the English system were base 12, there would be 12 possible values for any digit (0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9,A,B)

If it were base 3, there would be 3 possible values for any digit (0,1,2).

In base 10, we there are 10 possible values for any digit (0,1,2,3,4,5,6,7,8,9).

Just as an example to show you how the three bases are different, the value "12" in base 10 is the number 10 in base 12, and the number 100 in base 3.

And to look at that another way, While the number "12" in base 10 has a value of 12, the number "12" in base 12 has a value of 14, and the number "12" in base 3 has a value of 5.

Aren't number bases fun?

(I work in binary (base 2), octal (base 8 ), and hex (base 16) for a living - I should know how these things work :D).



Andrew
**currently studying Standard Deviation, Normal Distribution, Histograms, Algebra and more in Math10**

Ahh, two of the most important subjects in all of Mathematics, Statistics and Algebra :D .

The first I use by force, the second I use by choice
If I were a Mathematician, instead of a Computer Scientist, I would be an Algebraist.

Paul

ReptilianFeline
1st Oct 2004, 05:34 AM
Oh what fun :D

Thanks all for responding, it has been very educational. Now... if there are any misunderstanding concerning my posts, I think it has more to do with the fact that I studied mathematics and science in Swedish. Books in English on those subjects weren't really used when I went to primary and secondary school (another problem with conversions - school-systems), so my English is a bit rusty in the science department.

Anyway... I stayed in England (London area) for 10 months about 12 years ago, and back then metrics were easily understood and used. I was delighted that the weather report used both centigrade and farenheit, and not just farenheit. I also found that cooking was easy because there were three different types of measurements printed in the cook book, so I could use what was in the kitchen and still understand size.

I grew up with the metric system. Dividing by 10 was the easiets calculations in school, and learning the different prefixes made it so easy. The explanation to what a mile is made me understand why it's closer to our kilometer than our mil. But our 1 mil = 10 km, and probably has a different length than the roman mile. I like learning about ancient ways of measuring. I can picture in my mind people weighing and measuring goods and so on with their own hands and feet :) Think about going to the store to buy a fathom (sw. famn = embrace) of apples or something, and bringing along your really big cousin as measurement :D

The metric system is scientifically exact, easy to convert between units, and maybe boring. It's like an easy to use tool at the back of your mind. I'm sure those of you who are used to the imperial system feels the same way about easy usage. After all, you use it on a daily basis.

I can easily convert between binary and hexadeciaml and then to decimal, but I always thought that binary and hexadecimal is enough for computers. Converting to decimal is not really nescessary. We're just so used to it. When I look at the fractions of inces I see the same binary/hexadecimal serie, except on the ruler I have here at my work place. It can measure up to 43.2 cm or 17 in, or 102/6", 204/12", 170/10", 136/8", and it even have an 1/15" scale. Maybe you can understand why I found it so confusing?

Thank you for the links to converters. Steve (SKMoss), that converter you have made is something I'm looking forward to. To know that the translation bewteen systems is just a click away would make conversations about the size of layouts so much easier.

Now... on a sidenote... feet and inches are an integral part of the English language. If I want to say that something is really tiny in English I use the frase "it's just a fraction of an inch". I think about millimeter, but I don't say it.

bassethound
1st Oct 2004, 10:02 PM
And the citizens of the US sigh in relef that President George Bush Sr. policy to totaly convert the US to the metric system failed.

pbender
1st Oct 2004, 11:48 PM
And the citizens of the US sigh in relef that President George Bush Sr. policy to totaly convert the US to the metric system failed.

Actually, the push to convert the US to the metric system started LONG before any George Bush became President.

The metric system first became legal in the united states in 1866. Congress passed a law in 1975 that REQUIRED the federal government to switch to the metric system, though some loopholes were thrown into the law in 1988. (for other important metric system dates, see the US Metric Association's website:http://lamar.colostate.edu/~hillger/, especially their history page:http://lamar.colostate.edu/~hillger/dates.htm)

Some of us still wish we would convert to the metric system. It's important for international trade, and in many ways is more convienient to use.

Paul

davido
2nd Oct 2004, 07:55 AM
i have always been one of those stubborn, diehard, foot, inch, fraction guys.

then the US stock markets went metric ( never understood why the NYSE started out with 64ths of a dollar, maybe from the spanish thaler, pieces of eight?).

then i picked up this model railroad bug.

i am finding it much easier to plan, scale down and measure metricly ( is that a word?).

the US monetary system is metric, except for the quarter dollar, the most popular coin.

anyway, here's one southern metric user out of the closet

david

pcola, fl, usa

Bryan
2nd Oct 2004, 08:13 AM
...the US monetary system is metric, except for the quarter dollar, the most popular coin.

"Quarter" is just what it's called... it is 25 cents (.25 of a dollar) which is pretty decimal to me...

In Australia, we have 5

alco_haulic
2nd Oct 2004, 09:14 PM
Bryan your not wrong about hardest to counterfiet. When i was working in a Serivce Station (we really should call them Petrol stations now, as we didn't really provide any service) the number of badly counterfieted notes that were handed over was quite high. Have never seen a well counterfieted ozzie $50 note.
As for going metric, perhaps americans should look to a failed mars probe a few years back, can't remember its name sorry. The hieght for its parachute opening was calculated in Metric, and sent to NASA as Km. But no units were writen next to the figure, so NASA presumed it was measured in FEET!!!!!
Consequence: Several millions dollars worth of mission ruined when the probe slammed into the surface of mars at a very high velocity.

note: that story is what i've heard from many sources, so it is hearsay.

ReptilianFeline
4th Oct 2004, 05:54 AM
I had no idea that there was a law that said it was OK to use metric stsyem in the US!! :shock: I always asumed that the system used was something that was agreed upon by the people using it.

The money in the US is metric (sort of) but it's the names that are confusing. I know a quarter is 25 cent (don't have a cent sign on my keybord), but what is a dime and a nickle?

In Sweden today we only have 3 coins, the rest is in paper bills; 10 kr, 1 kr amd 0.5 kr (also know as 50 ore). We have a lot of prices that cant be payed with coins, so it's all rounded up/down to the nearest 0.5 kr.

On a side note... I'm writing a novel and they main people there has a different system for calculating time. Then they meet people that count time almost like we do. Talk about problems! :)

Bryan
4th Oct 2004, 08:03 AM
(don't have a cent sign on my keybord)

Hold down [Alt] while typing 0162 on the numerics pad...

pbender
4th Oct 2004, 09:46 AM
I had no idea that there was a law that said it was OK to use metric stsyem in the US!! :shock: I always asumed that the system used was something that was agreed upon by the people using it.


The laws say it is a legal way to use things in trade. It's perfectly fine for someone to use a different system of measurements for thier own personal use, but in order to trade on the open market,the units have to be agreed upon.



The money in the US is metric (sort of) but it's the names that are confusing. I know a quarter is 25 cent (don't have a cent sign on my keybord), but what is a dime and a nickle?


a dime is $0.10
a nickel is $0.05

In addition to those, and the penny, We also have half dollars (or 50 cent pieces) and dollar coins, though those are not as widly circulated as the smaller coins (I personally like the dollar coins, and $2 bills, but you usually have to request those most of the time).

I'm also told there was a 1/2 cent piece at one point in time, but I'm too young to remember that (apparently,the last incarnation of the 1/2 cent piece was made from plastic).

Paul

ReptilianFeline
4th Oct 2004, 10:05 AM

ClassC
4th Oct 2004, 10:20 AM
I'm also told there was a 1/2 cent piece at one point in time, but I'm too young to remember that (apparently,the last incarnation of the 1/2 cent piece was made from plastic).In Illinois and Missouri - in the '50's - we had mil and five mil "coins" that were plastic. One was red and one was green. One was a tenth of a cent and one five tenths. We paid that weird gasoline price exactly!

Dallas_Morlan
4th Oct 2004, 11:17 AM
Since we got into coins the half penny is something we Americans inherited from the British. This link is to the definition provided by the American Heritage Dictionary definition of the "ha'penny" http://www.bartleby.com/61/32/H0053275.html

As for metric conversion the foot to meter has two conversion values. The international and U.S. Survey Foot conversions. The U.S. Survey Foot is used only in mapping projects covering large areas (mostly historic data originally collected in feet). The international foot is used for all uses other than mapping of large areas. The U.S. Survey Foot, 1 M = 3.2808333333 Ft. and the International Foot, 1 M = 3.2808398501 Ft. An example of the effect on points defined by improper conversion on standard coordinate systems is posted on the U.S. National Geodetic Survey web site: http://www.ngs.noaa.gov/PC_PROD/WorkShops/PPT/SPCS/tsld034.htm

Individual state legislatures define their own "State Plane" coordinate systems for conversion of latitude and longitude into mapping coordinates. Many large construction projects including federal funding (Interstate Highways, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers flood control projects, etc.) require use of these coordinate systems. Some states have specified U.S. Survey Foot others International Foot and a few have not included any conversion factor. Just makes it more fun to keep things organized.

ReptilianFeline
5th Oct 2004, 07:12 AM
I found this nice site about old Swedish measurements. The basis of it is described along with conversions. The site is in English:
http://www.algonet.se/~hogman/slmatt_eng.htm

It seems like most countries had their own special versions of lenght.

dstuard
8th Oct 2004, 01:45 PM
I grew up with feet and inches, learned metric in school and wish we would convert (Like you in Sweden did when you went to right hand driving).

Biggest peeves: US should adopt $50, $20, $10 and $5 notes. Coins at $2, $1, $.50, $.10 and $.05. Eliminate the $1 note and the penny. Round prices to the nearest nickle.

Dual-sign all distances and speed limits, metric on top. Sell gas in litres.

To sooth the luddites, "windshield" will remain "windshield", and a freight car will never be a "goods van".

When driving in Europe last year, my wife asked how fast we were going. I said "130". She said "how fast is that really?", I said "130!"

It would take less than 2 weeks to get used to it. Heck the military has measured distances in "clicks" (km) for over 30 years!

I vote for a "flash cut"!!!

ReptilianFeline
11th Oct 2004, 06:44 AM
It's funny how some countries decide that they don't want to follow the standards used by the rest of the world. I think the biggest problem with the US is that the states can choose what they want to do seperate from the over all US government, and that the precident rarely seems to want the same thing as congress. I don't know if that's really the case, but that is what it looks like to us outsiders. Maybe it's one of those things that needs to be started on the individual level.

Dallas_Morlan
11th Oct 2004, 01:54 PM
The real problem that halted the conversion to metric was private industry. The companies manufacturing building materials looked at the market and decided it was not worth retooling. All new construction for the U.S. highway system (Interstate Routes, U.S. Routes and Federal funded state highways) was designed in metric for several years. The design process for such highway projects requires a year or more.

When the contracts were bid and the construction companies tried to buy metric materials very little was available. The projects were respecified (not the same as redesigned) to use similar Imperial units material that was available. Then congress backed down and allowed state highway departments to chose between the systems. However, all federally funded non-highway new construction is still required to be metric. This means new federal buildings are metric and repairs to existing construction is feet & inches.

The % of the total construction materials manufactured in metric for U.S. consumtion is small enough to be ignored by most companies. The NAFTA trade agreement allows metric materials from our trading partners to be used in the federal projects. Prior to NAFTA all such materials were required to be of U.S. manufacture. The large international companies just import and deliver enough to meet the demand. Shooting ourselves in the foot both ways as far as I'm concerned. :?

BikerDad
11th Oct 2004, 02:52 PM
It's funny how some countries decide that they don't want to follow the standards used by the rest of the world. I think the biggest problem with the US is that the states can choose what they want to do seperate from the over all US government, and that the precident rarely seems to want the same thing as congress. I don't know if that's really the case, but that is what it looks like to us outsiders. Maybe it's one of those things that needs to be started on the individual level.

Standards divergence isn't restricted by any means to the US. What standard does your television operate on? Cell phone? Both of those devices were invented over here, yet Europe decided to go with a different standard. Heck, even in modelling we face this challenge. Try using one of your powerpacks over here without an adapter, or visaversa. Try finding a 4'x8' sheet of plywood there in the Baltic, rather than your fine 150cmx150cm, which, btw, doesn't fit into the bed of a pickup.

The other aspect of it is deeply cultural. The US is slowly transitioning to the metric system in practice. Every effort by the government to accelerate the process simply rankles people a lot. Americans have historically been far less amenable to top-down dictates, for a lot of reasons. That's one reason why we have so many different separations of powers, from our three branches of government, to three LEVELS of government that make up our federal system. Yeah, there are problems with it, but a lot of benefits as well.

dstuard
11th Oct 2004, 05:50 PM
How much is that in Furlongs per Fortnight? :hit:

Dallas_Morlan
11th Oct 2004, 06:01 PM
The other aspect of it is deeply cultural. The US is slowly transitioning to the metric system in practice. Every effort by the government to accelerate the process simply rankles people a lot. Americans have historically been far less amenable to top-down dictates, for a lot of reasons. That's one reason why we have so many different separations of powers, from our three branches of government, to three LEVELS of government that make up our federal system. Yeah, there are problems with it, but a lot of benefits as well.

I agree there are both problems and benefits with our form of government. I think the benefits far outweigh the problems. Remember both the three branches and three levels of government were designed specifically to create a system that would be difficult to unbalance. My reference to shooting ourselves in the foot was strictly in the financial sense. Difficult to export unless metric and then require metric for public works and allow import of the same. Just a bit of a confusing combination. :?

Bryan
11th Oct 2004, 08:00 PM
How much is that in Furlongs per Fortnight? :hit:

That's distance by time, so since plywood isn't measures that way, I'll give you 55Miles/hr...
Which is 147848.8Ferlongs/Fortnight... :P

thirdrail
11th Oct 2004, 11:38 PM
Personally, I am familiar with both systems, but to one who uses the US system on a daily basis, the metric system has a fundamental flaw in measurement of length in that it goes from MM, to CM, to meters. The MM is roughly like 1/16" of an inch to US folks, the CM is close to an inch, and the meter is close to a yard. But, where is the foot?? The vast majority of measurements in our country are expressed in feet! LIKE THE LENGTH OF RAILROAD CARS! Folks say their lot is 75 by 100 and it is understood they mean feet.

Then there's the liter...we have the quart and the gallon (4 quarts). The liter is twice the quart and half the gallon!

Seriously, and I've given this some thought, I think those two measurements are the reason most Americans don't embrace the metric system.

Dallas_Morlan
12th Oct 2004, 12:38 AM
I'll not address the liter question. However, try 1/3 meter on for the foot. I know it is not a "named" value just stick with me for a minute.

From my Oct. 4 Post (back on page 2)
"The U.S. Survey Foot, 1 M = 3.2808333333 Ft."
Then 3.2808333333 x 0.333333333 = 1.0936111100063888889
0.0936111 x 12 = 1.08 inch
So 1/3 of a meter is 1 U.S. Survey Foot and .0936111 ft. is 1.08 inches.
That makes one third of a meter roughly equal to one foot and one inch.

I'm ignoring the fact that the 0.08 of an inch equals 5.12 sixtyfourths of an inch!

:lol: Just had to sneek that last one in :)

n2trains
12th Oct 2004, 12:43 AM
I am a civil engineer by training. Those folks are a backward bunch that are fundamentally and emphatically opposed to the metric system. A buddy of mine is also a CE but was raised in India and Canada. He just laughs at the articles in the trade magazines where these folks complain that we just can't convert and whine when folks use metric measurements in their articles. The world will come to an end if they have to learn the metric system?!? He said he remembers when Canada switched and says they basically just woke up one morning and worked in metric, you get over it.

On the other hand, if the US did adopted the metric system then poor Burma(Myanmar) would be all alone in the world using the empirical system.

N2TRAINS

ReptilianFeline
12th Oct 2004, 02:14 AM
I know there are a lot of things that aren't standardized over the world, TV or video being one of them. If I'm not misstaken, the companies themselves decided on a standard, and it wans't even the best one. Now it isn't a problem, since most videos can play both PAL and NTSC, DVDs can play region-free, and I'm not going to take my TV with me when I travel, it's just too expencive and heavy.

Electrical outlets is another thing, but the power in the lines are mostly the same, so an adaptor is the right tool here.

When I buy supplies to build something, I can measuer in inches or metric, and both work fine when buying the stuff, especially if you want it cut to size.
If it will fit in the car depends on the car.

If we don't have names for a third of a meter, so what? It isn't a nessesity. We use numbers instead of names, and that works fine too. It's a matter of how exact the measurements need to be. It has never been a problem here. I think it's a matter of what you're used to, a very cultural thing indeed.

Bryan
12th Oct 2004, 08:23 AM
When Australia changed to metric, we (in school) where told that you learn the new system unto itself, and don't convert... this gets you thinking in metric and makes it a lot easier... once you know the system, then you learn the conversion factors to get the metric size of an imperial item...

cm where only really used in clothing... most "things" where in mm... and small distances (survey) is in M, and longer distances (highway) in Km's...

Industry managed just fine also... it was a little messy for a while but cleared up an a few years... the biggest head-ache was with bolts & nuts... to get their moneys worth out of their dies, companies would use imperial bolt blanks and put metric threads on them, until they needed new dies, at which time they got metric... this meant the poor mechanic was using an imperial spanner (wrench) on a metric (threaded) bolt... you didn't know which you needed to get for a given bolt... modern US vehicles have a mix of metric and imperial fasteners in them, which is a PITA...

ReptilianFeline
12th Oct 2004, 08:44 AM
In Sweden we measure lenght mostly in cm and m, and when we talk, dm (decimeter). mm is usually onlu used for either really small parts or when i higher level of accurasy is needed.