Most people think that a tape measure is for measuring things. They are right, of course, but there is more to a tape measure than first meets the eye. There are specific features built in to the indispensable tool that make it much more effective and efficient, but only if one knows what they are and how to use them. Many of the features are to be found at the terminal end of the tape itself, ingeniously built in to the metal tab that holds it in place on an edge or against a surface.
Upon close inspection, one will notice a notch in the face of the tab. If, like many people, you find yourself trying to measure something without someone to hold the end still, only to have the end slip off until your temper begins to slip with it, you can place the head of a nail or screw in the slot and it will hold the tape securely from any angle. The second feature is the serrated edge of the tab. It can be used in lieu of a pencil to mark the measurement, and it will always be accurate because it is built in to the tape itself.
You might have noticed that the tab wiggles quite a bit. You may have assumed that you have a faulty tape measure, but they all have this feature. If you look closely at the markings of the first inch, you will see that it is 1/16 inch short. When you hook the tape to an outside edge, the tape pulls away from the tab by 1/16 inch. Conversely, when you place the tape on an inside edge, the 1/16 inch thick tab itself makes up the missing distance. There is a final, crucial design feature that is even more helpful and rarely known, but you’ll have to watch to the end of the video to find out what it is!