The tape measure was invented in 1868. A man by the name of Alvin J Fellows in the USA (Connecticut) came up with the idea of encasing a retractable measuring strip within a tiny box. Hence, the tape measure was officially born. Today, the tape measure is found in every toolbox around Australia and inside every household.
The True Inventor
Although Alvin J Fellows, is widely known as inventing the tape measure in its current form, the original inventor was actually James Chesterman in 1829. James was an Englishman who created measuring flat wires for the garment industry.
The first original tape measures by James Chesterman were strips of steel that were marked at intervals. These intervals were the measurements.
Subsequently, Alvin J Fellows created a spring-loaded casing which resembles the tape measures as we know them today. Check out the original design blueprint below, and you will know what I mean.
Modern Tape Measures
There are two main types of tape measures today. The first is soft tape measures. These are flexible fabric based tape measures. Perfect for use when you need to measure around turns and corners, for example, someone's waistline.
The second type of tape measure is the metal tape measure. The measuring part of this tape measure is made from aluminium and is perfect for measuring longer distances. It is more durable and is the most common tape measure used by tradies in Australia.
The modern tape measures today, comes in all sorts of shapes, sizes and lengths. The cost of tape measures has come down remarkably, so much so, that branding logos onto promotional tape measures is quite common. This has also meant that custom branded tape measures, is now one of our most popular types of promotional items. If you are reading this, why not consider using promotional tape measures for your next event.
Images are first seen on the website: http://blogs.toolbarn.com/2014/06/tbt-the-history-of-the-measuring-tape/