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8 Best Tape Measures for Woodworkers

By: David S. Miles | Last Updated:

The tape measure is one very important tool for every woodworker, DIYer and professional. We all have a tape measure at home, and we surely use it very often. The right measurement is the most important part of a successful task.

We know that there are many brands, and a lot of tape measures on the market, and the choice between them may be really hard sometimes. How can you make the right choice? How can you compare all of the different types of tape measures?

It is a hard task, but we can help. Today we are going to tell you more about some of the best tape measures for woodworkers available on the market, about their pros and cons. Furthermore, we will give you a detailed guide on how to buy the perfect tape measure.

Best Tape Measures for Woodworkers


We have chosen the best tape measures for woodworkers available on the market. We will give you a detailed description of each one, and of course, we will add the pros and cons, so you can make your choice.

1. Stanley Hand Tool 33-725 FatMax Tape Measure


The Stanley’s Hand tool tape measure is 25 feet and this makes it perfect for DIY projects and any person that just needs a tape measure with a long lifespan. The length of the blade is good for almost any project.

The weight is 1 pound, and this makes it easy to be carried around.  The lock design is perfect since it makes the opening of the blade easier. Furthermore, the numbers are easy to read, since they are black and are placed on a yellow background.

The Stanley Tape Measure tool is used by many professionals, but not only, since it is easy to use and many DIYers and beginners also use this tool. It is not expensive, but not a cheaper one.

Pros:

  • top front blade lock design
  • post center markings
  • easy to use
  • long blade

Cons:

  • springs may get weak fast
  • lock button can be moved hard sometimes

2. Craftsman Tape Measure 25-Foot


The Craftsman Tape Measure is one amazing choice for all of the woodworkers. It is a 25-foot analog tape measure that is cost-effective and easy to use. It has a rubber, which makes using the tool easier.

It has a very high rating, and it is used by many woodworkers. It has very good durability and a long lifespan. It’s price is very affordable, and this makes it perfect for home use. It also has smooth sliding loc and visible blade markings.

In addition, the blade automatically stays in a locked position until you want to change that by pressing a button. This feature offers smooth retraction.

Pros:

  • durability
  • smooth sliding lock
  • compact, can be used with one hand
  • long blade standout

Cons:

  • tang lacks versatility
  • weak blade self-retaction

3. DeWalt DWHT36109


DeWalt Tape Measures is a great tool at an affordable price. The length of the blade is 30 feet, which makes it perfect for almost any task. It also has a wide base for great stability during layout.

This tool has a patented plastic and rubber slide lock that provides good protection from jobsite abuse. It is made from plastic, and it is colored in yellow and black.

Pros:

  • durable housing
  • 30 feet reach
  • very easy to use

Cons:

  • difficult to remove it from the packaging
  • locking mechanism is not good

4. Spec Ops – SPEC-TM25 Tools 25-Foot Tape Measure


The Spec Ops 25 feet measure tool is one amazing, easy to use tool that is up to 20% more compact than other tools. The length of the blade is 25 feet which makes it great for almost any task.

It offers high-visibility, because of its white blade with double-sided markings for precise measurements. It’s speed lock is precise and quickly locks and releases. It is used by professionals and DIYers, since it offers great features.

Furthermore, 3% of all Spec Ops Tools purchases are donated to veteran and first responder causes.

Pros:

  • 25 feet long blade
  • large visible numbers
  • great locking mechanism
  • donation to great causes

Cons:

  • thin tape
  • may go back quickly

5. Milwaukee 48-22-6825 25 Foot Compact Auto Lock Tape


These tape measures will give you a high level of versatility, ergonomics and easy-to-use lock. Its blade is 25 feet long, which is more than enough for many tasks. It has a great auto-locking mechanism, which makes it one very good tool.

Many woodworkers choose the Milwaukee Compact Auto Lock Tape, because of the great design and easy readability that it offers. Furthermore, it is great for one-handed use because of its sliding locks.

Pros:

  • great auto-locking blade
  • great ergonomics
  • easy-to-read fractions
  • blade durability

Cons:

  • no magnetic tang
  • sometimes goes back faster

6. eTape16 Digital Electronic Tape Measure


If you are looking for a tool that has all useful features combined in one, then the eTape16 digital electronic tape measure is the tool for you. It is reliable, accurate and easy to use. It’s made of polycarbonate plastic, which makes it weather-resistant and durable.

Furthermore, it weighs 0,61 pounds which makes it easy to carry around. It has a large digital display that provides you real-time reliable readouts as the tape blade extends. It can also record measurements and it comes with three memory functions.

It is perfect for woodworkers, since it is easy to use, a modern and accurate tool. However, many beginners and DIYers use this tool too, since it can be used even by people that do not have experience.

Pros:

  • made of polycarbonate plastic
  • weather resistance
  • converts measurements quickly
  • automated

Cons:

  • shorter blade than usual
  • can be more expensive than other tape measures

7. HAUTEC 16 Ft (5m) Heavy Duty AutoLock Black Tape Measure


This HAUT MEC heavy duty tape measure has a special extreme rigid thick black steel blade, which length is 16 feet. It is very easy to read, thanks to its special design- the blade is black, and the numbers are in white.

Its measurement is absolutely accurate, because of the nylon wrap blade with better wear resistance. It can stand at least 1000 hours. Its use is convenient, since it has very high performance.

The drawback is slow, there is an auto-stop mechanism and a lock button, which makes the use of the tape measure very easy. It is not big, nor heavy. This tape measure is compact and that’s why it is preferred by many people.

It is used for professional work, but beginners and DIYers can use this tape measure with ease too. The price is affordable, and one of the best on the market.

Pros:

  • heavy duty measuring tape
  • easy to read
  • durable accurate measurement
  • convenient use

Cons:

  • no automatic lock
  • only in black

8. DAYOU 25 ft Measuring Tapes Retractable Metric and Inches


The DAYOU 24 feet measuring tape is one great option, thanks to its compact design, great blade and good price. Now, let’s give you some details. This tool has a 40% thicker blade made of nylon wrap, which makes the measuring tape rust proof and better on wear resistance.

It is very easy to use, since the numbers are big and readable. The blade is 25 feet long, which makes it perfect for almost any task possible.

This tape measure has a very high performance spring, which means that it makes the ruler draw back slowly and safely. This also improves the lifespan of the tool. This tape is used by many professionals, and some DIYers too.

Pros:

  • maximum durability
  • high-performance spring
  • easy read measurement
  • strong blade

Cons:

  • casing may be slippery at times

Buying guide

Of course, we will provide you with a buying guide, so you can be aware of every detail that has to be considered before buying a tape measure.

Length

A factor that should always be kept in mind is the length of the blade. So, before buying a tape measure you have to know how long the blade will be. Most of the tools have a 25 feet long blade, but this may vary between the models. 

In order to choose the right blade you have to consider the woodworking projects you will be doing. Of course, you can get shorter than 25 feet measuring tape, depending on the project you will be doing.

Keep in mind that the smaller tape is a lighter one, which is more convenient for carrying it around with you. However, it is fully dependent on your job if you need a long or short measuring tape.

Most woodworkers need a long tape measure, since they are measuring different types of materials all the time.

Measurement Accuracy

One of the most important things to consider is the measurement accuracy. As a woodworker, the accuracy of your measures has to be accurate in order to have a successful project. That’s the purpose of the measuring tape, isn’t it?

Sadly, not every tape measure is accurate in its measuring. There are two types of tools: analog measuring tape, which may vary in its accuracy, and digital measuring tape, which has to be highly accurate. The digital measuring tape may be more expensive than the analog measuring type.

Tape Lock and Brake

The locking features are a very important factor that will make your work easier. In order to make accurate measurements, then you need to have a locking mechanism. Some tape measures come with manual locking mechanisms, others have automatic ones.

You have to consider the quality of the tape measure locking mechanism too, since it may influence the accuracy of your work, and the lifespan of the tape measure.

Most of the modern measuring tapes will come with a self-locking mechanism and a brake, which makes it easier for the woodworker to actually use it. However, even if it has a manual locking mechanism that will not be a problem.

Width

The size of the tape measure is very important. Consider the length of blade that you need, consider the width and the weight of the tape measure that will be perfect for you. 

This may vary between the way you work. For example, if you are working in a workshop then you most likely do not need a small tool, but if you are carrying it around every day you may prefer a smaller one.

Unit Measurement

Another factor that should always be considered is the unit of measurement that the tool you want uses. Most of the tape measures include dual measurement units, which is great for woodworkers, so they can switch between metric and imperial systems.

Not every tape measure will offer you dual measurement, so you better look for the type of measurement you know. Consider this factor before buying a tool, since it may be a hard task to look at different types of measurement than the one you know.

Durability

Durability is very important, since we all want to get a tool that will last long. When you are purchasing a tape measure, then hopefully, you will get one that will be used for a long time.

Here you have to consider the material of the casing, the material of the blade and it’s quality. If you want to get a tape measure with a long life then you have to invest in good material.

Of course, the long lasting lifespan of the tape measure is very important. 

Price

Of course, you have to consider the price. Yes, the tape measure is not an expensive tool, but you better consider your budget here. If you want a tool that will have a long lifespan, consider investing in one made of qualified materials.

Ease of Use


Is there something more important than the ease of use? We don’t think so! As a woodworker, you will have a lot of tasks on your plate, so you will most likely prefer a tool that will be easy to use.

Consider a type of measuring tool that you already know, and that you will know how to use. You can always check some youtube videos to get more information on the different types and the way of use.

Visability

The clear plain number is pretty important. Most of the tape measures have black or red measures placed on a yellow or white background, which is great for the readability. However, there are different designs. 

You  better look for a tool that has exact and big numbers with enough space for reading.

Extra Features


One of the aspects that have to be considered is the extra features that a tape measure will offer. They can include unique design, ergonomic design, or additional features added.

You can get a rust-resistant or drop-proof tape measure, or you can look for a tool with a long-lasting life. It is very important to get a tape that will make exact measurements, so you better look for one.

To conclude we can say that choosing a tape measure may be a hard task, since there are so many on the market. However, if you are informed, and if you know what kind of tool you are looking for you can easily make your choice.

As a woodworker you have to consider the tasks you will be accomplishing, and of course, the features you will be looking for. It’s a good idea to use a buying guide, it is helpful! We wish you good luck!

Frequently Asked Questions

1.Can you use tape measures for woodworking?

Of course you can. The tape measure is one of the most important tools for every woodworker, so you better use it if you want to have accurate measurements and successful tasks.

2.Why is reading a tape measure so important in woodworking?

The tape measure is an essential tool for every woodworker. IYou have to know how to read it. It can be read in inches, feet, yards or metric units, and some tape measures present information in both.

It is important to know how to use it, since these tools are very important for every project. You have to know the exact sizes of the parts you will be using, then you will make successful projects.

3. What are the safety rules for a tape measure?

Even though the tape measure is not a very dangerous tool, there are some safety rules that you have to follow when using it. Here they are:

  • Secure it at a height
  • Be cautious around electricity
  • Retract Tape measures slowly
  • keep them away from kinds since they may be dangerous for the little ones
  • Maintain your tape measure

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