Micrometers, both mechanical and digital models, are precision measuring tools that require good maintenance. Maintenance is important to keep the micrometer durable and accurate. Most micrometers nowadays are actually durable. But improper use and poor maintenance can shorten the mic life use.
Before you learn how to maintenance the micrometer, make sure you know how to use the micrometer properly including using the ratchet. Don’t force to rotate the thimble too tight because it will impair the accuracy.
There are several tasks that you could do to keep your micrometers in good condition. Here we have some tips for maintaining your lovely micrometer.
1. Wipe with A Soft Cloth
Before storing the micrometer, take a moment to wipe the micrometer with a soft cloth. It’s important to get it rid of water or oil or dust after use. Similarly, when you are going to use it, a brief wiping can prevent error, especially to clean off any tiny object around the measuring faces.
A micrometer is commonly bought together with its box storage. Put the micrometer on its own place and don’t forget to put the wrench on its own. In case any vibration happens, the micrometer and wrench will not bump each other.
2. Oil It Regularly
Over a certain period of time, the micrometer needs to get oil. It can be weekly or monthly. You can use any multi-purpose oil. The threads will likely corrode after a long time of use. You can disassemble the micrometer and oil the inside parts before putting it back in storage.
3. Don’t Close the Anvil and Spindle
Never store the micrometer with a closed spindle and anvil. This is to anticipate in case the temperature around the micrometer changes. When the temperature rises, the spindle and anvil length can extend due to heat thermal expansion. If they are not separated, they will force each other and ruin the internal parts. Even a tiny small impact of the internal part of the micrometer can interfere with the measurement accuracy.
4. Temperature and Humidity
After putting the mic into its storage box (case), position the storage box in the right place. Never put it in a place where the temperature is either too hot or cold, especially under direct sunlight. The best practice is to store the mic at a room temperature of about 20°C/68°F. Make sure, it should be far away from the water and children reach it as well. Aside from that, you should put attention to the humidity. A certain level of humidity can trigger corrosion as the mics are made of steel or stainless steel.
5. Remove the Battery (for Digital Micrometer)
If you know that you will not use your digital micrometer for a long time in the future, you have to remove the battery from its compartment. The battery could leak. This is also the drawback of a digital micrometer.
Removing the battery also means you save the battery power. Even though you have to install it every time you want to use it, it’s better off rather than the battery is out of power during the measurement.
6. Never Dissamble (for Digital Micrometer)
If your digital micrometer seems broken, you should not disassemble it yourself. Perhaps, the internal circuit causes issue such as the LCD screen or its processor. Preferably rely it on to those who are skilled in electronic circuits.
7. Avoid Collision
Don’t knock the micrometer using a hard tool. Also, don’t use it as a hammer. Use a fitting in order for the mic to stay in place. Besides, ensure that the micrometer never drops. It can impair even break the inside components of the micrometer.
8. Regular Calibration
Calibrating the micrometer regularly is important to know its accuracy error. You could use workshop-level gauge blocks. The gauge blocks should be calibrated as well. If you need a high degree of calibration reliability, you could hire a calibration company to calibrate it. In this case, make sure that the company lab is accredited to ISO 17025.
Micrometer maintenance is not a super difficult thing. You just need to be consistent and put love on it. Simple care can last the micrometer longer and serve you with consistent accuracy.