Measuring and Layout Tools
A plumber’s basic instruments include measuring and layout tools. Precise measurements need to be made before installing plumbing piping, systems, and fixtures.
Measuring tools allow you to determine the length, width, height, and diameter of objects such as pipes. These tools also allow you to determine if a surface is level or plumb.
If a surface is level, it is straight on the horizontal plane.
If a surface is plumb, it is straight on the vertical plane.
Layout tools are used to make accurate lines, circles, and curves.
Accurate measurements are fundamental to plumbing.
Click on the measuring and layout tools to know more:
Folding rules are usually made of wood and come in 6-foot and 8-foot lengths.
They often come equipped with a 6-inch-long brass extension that can be used to take inside measurements between two walls. The brass extension allows you to measure in tight places or to measure short distances beyond the end of the folding rule.
A variation of the wooden folding rule is the plumber’s rule. It has measurements on one side and a 45-degree scale on the other. It is used to measure offsets when installing a pipe or vent around an obstacle.
Steel Tape Measure
Steel tape measures are valuable in many professions, including plumbing. Steel tape measures are compact, flexible, and easy to carry. When measuring long pipes, a steel tape is used.
Straight, accurate lines and angles are necessary for any construction work, including plumbing. Square tools are used to make sure lines are straight and angles are true.
The speed square, also known as a rafter angle, magic square, or protractor square, is used for marking and measuring. It combines a try miter, protractor, and framing square in one tool.
Use a speed square to see if a cut or joint is square, to mark cutoff lines, or as a straightedge, to see if a surface has been warped or cupped.
A combination square is used to establish whether two sides of an object join in a true 90-degree angle.
A framing square has a variety of uses: marking and laying out patterns, testing for squareness, and measuring. The framing square can also be used as a straight edge for testing the flatness of a surface.