Posts Tagged ‘scale’

Triple Beam Balance Scale

March 22, 2009

I prefer the mechanical kind of scale to electronic ones.  No worries about plugs or batteries, or spilling dye water on it, plus it just seems more . . . real, somehow.  Maybe I’m strange.  Anyways, there are a few things that you need to know in order to use one of these things.

Triple Beam Balance Scale

Step One: Make sure that zero really is zero.  Slide all the slidey bits to zero.  There is a little knob underneath the platform, that will adjust the weight ever so slightly so the arm is pointing at zero.  This can make up for any slight slope on the surface you’re working on.  Also, if you are measuring something like dye, that needs to be in a container of some kind (I usually just use a folded piece of paper) then you can put the empty container on the scale, reset it to zero, and then you don’t have to worry about the weight of the container (known as tare weight) distorting the weight of the dye.

Zero isn't Zero

Step Two: Place the thing to be weighed (TTBW) on the platform.

TTBW

Step Three: If needed, add an extra weight to the end of the beam.  Mine came with three – one 500 g and two 1 kg weights.  There are two hooks, so I can use one or two in any combination.  Put on the heaviest weight you can that doesn’t overbalance the TTBW.

Adding Extra Weight

Step Four: Enter the slidey things!  Starting with the heaviest one (100 g increments), start moving it along the beam.  When you reach the point that it overbalances, move back one.  Next do the middle one (10 g increments) and finally the lightest one (1 g increments).

TTBW weighed

Step Five: Add it up.  The weight on the end, plus the weight at each slidey thing on the beams equals the total weight.  This ceramic starfish, for example, weighs 85.7 g.  0 g on the end, 0 g on beam #1, 80 g on beam #2, and 5.7 g on beam #3.

One final note:  You can also set the slidey things to a particular position and then pile your TTBW on the platform until the lever is at 0.  I usually do it this way for dyes, it saves a lot of fuss when the amounts are small.