Digital height gages can almost be likened to giant calipers, thanks to their long range of motion. They also come with the additional benefit of more sophisticated accuracy, equivalent to that of a bench top gaging system. This makes digital height gages versatile instruments capable of producing a range of measurements timely and accurately. On top of that, they are extremely user-friendly, being easy to use and maintain. In this article, we share with you everything you need to know about this incredibly versatile instrument.
Components of Digital Height Gages
Digital height gages consist of several parts:
- Height measuring station: Used mainly for measuring diameters and distances between two points, the measuring station is designed to produce vertical one-dimensional coordinate measurements. In certain cases, two-dimensional measurements can be possible if the test piece is able to be titled by 90 degrees and the evaluation display is equipped to calculate these coordinates.
- Base plate: The base plate sits on the bottom of the height measuring station and serves an important function. This base plate is usually a grade 0 or 1 granite base plate mounted on a stand that can withstand vibrations to prevent inaccuracy of results.
- Evaluation display.
Of course, the accuracy of the results will depend on the quality of your digital height gage as well as whether regular care and maintenance have been carried out.
Maintaining and Caring for Your Digital Height Gage
To prolong the lifespan of your instrument and ensure the most accurate results possible, below are some steps you should make a habit of practicing:
- Clean the table and surrounding area that your digital height gage is on as well as the contact probe after every use.
- After turning on, let the gage set its reference location and sit by itself for a minute before re-zeroing it.
- Manually remaster the probe diameter from time to time.
- Store the instrument away from direct sunlight, radiators and anywhere that may let in drafts.
- Keep the base plate clean and free from any dirt or chips.
- Avoid touching any component of the instrument with your bare hands. The body temperature of humans tends to be above room temperature, and if any heat was to be transported to the instrument, it can cause heat expansion and result in inaccuracy. Always use gloves when handling your height gage.
- Do not touch the instrument unnecessarily – only touch the components that are meant for this purpose such as the handle and switch.
- Before measuring a test piece, always make sure that it is at optimal temperature. If a test piece has just been transported from a very hot or cold location, let it cool down or warm up before measuring it.
- Wait for the test piece to stop moving completely before noting down its measurement. When it is moving, the results can fluctuate. It can be good to adjust the gage setting time accordingly.
- As a general rule, air bearings should only be used to position the gage before taking a measurement. If for any reason they are required during a measurement, the air bearings should also be switched on when the measurement is being taken.
Although the quality of your digital height gage is important when it comes to accuracy, proper care and maintenance can go a long way in prolonging its lifespan and ensuring that results are not compromised by external variables. A quick routine check after every use can go a long way in giving you peace of mind that your instrument is in the best possible condition to continue serving you for as long as possible.