Measuring Tool - Handy Everyday Tool!




In this project I will show you how to make this measurment tool I designed!

This tool can be used in all your projects for measuring distance, time and levelness.

It also has a small lens to help you see the smaller things in life.

You have 3 ways of producing this tool:

  1. You can 3D print it!
  2. You can lasercut it out of the material you want!
  3. You can make it by hand!

I will include the files for 3D printing and lasercutting.

I will also provide technical drawings of the measurments so you can make it by hand if you wish to do that.

Mine is 3D printed so in the pictures you will find that version.

Last thing before I show you the steps: this intructable is entered in the build a tool contest, if you like the project please vote for it!

Step 1: Stuff You Need!

The stuff you need should be not to hard to find, I will include links to AliExpress where I got my things from.

If you use stuff from other shops please make sure to change the dimensions in you work.

Things you need:

  • Bubble level 10 x 10 x 29 mm

  • 3 minute hourglass

  • Lens (google cardboard version) 25 x 45 mm

  • counter sunk screws (m4 x 6mm)

  • M4 thread Connect Rod (dia 5mm x length 9mm)

You will also need the material where you make the tool out of.

This can be 3D print fillement, wood, acryl or whatever material you want. However this does also depent on what method of production you will choose (see the step before).

Step 2: If You Want to 3D Print...

If you want to 3D print the 3 main parts then the STL Files are included below!

I printed mine with PLA, 20% infill and no support.

The 3D viewer below is not working correctly, download the parts for the right view!

Step 3: If You Want to Laser Cut...

If you want to make the 3 main parts by lasercutting then the DXF files are included below!

You will need to cut the parts out of material 5 mm thick. Otherwise the parts wont fit!

Make sure to set the ruler lines as an engravment, not a cut.

Also you will need to drill the chamfer yourself for the countersunk bolts. Otherwise they wont fit.

Step 4: If You Want to Make the Parts Another Way...

If you want to make the 3 main parts in another way then the technical drawings are above!

These drawings include all the dimensions needed to make the 3 parts yourself.

Please note that the chamfer dimensions are not in the drawings.

If you have any questions then please feel free to ask them below!

Step 5: Assemble!

Step 1: Put part 1 and 2 on top of each other

Step 2: insert the lens and the level in the positions

Step 3: Lay the hourglass on part 3

Step 4: put part 1 and 2 on top of part 3

Step 5: fasten all the parts with the screws.

Step 6: That's It!

Enjoy your very own measuring tool to use during your projects!

Don't forget to send in a picture if you make one and please vote for the build a tool contest!

Build a Tool Contest

Runner Up in the
Build a Tool Contest



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    13 Discussions


    12 days ago

    What did you use to make that nice technical drawing?

    1 reply

    Reply 12 days ago

    I work with SOLIDWORKS, for all my drawings!


    14 days ago

    I just finished assembling the tool. The hourglass is just a little too short for the hole and it slides back and forth. Nothing a gluegun can’t fix, but still - now you know. I have attached a photo. Thanks!

    3 replies

    Reply 14 days ago

    Nice! I love how smooth your print came out! I see that it is indeed a bit lose, I will look into it. Also the hourglasses can have some different dimensions each as their tolerances can be quite loose. Still love to see that you made it!


    Reply 13 days ago

    Yeah, it was great fun. Thanks for taking your time to make it easy :) I made it for a geeky 6yr old. He'll probably love it. Do you know of other tool or easy to make machines for kids that age?


    Reply 12 days ago

    Hmm not our the top of my head but if you want more nice small projects like this you should search for the pocket sized contest here on instructables, there are a lot of nice projects to find there!


    7 weeks ago

    I can’t figure out what dimensions the connect rods should be. The link points to a page with a variety of dimensions and length, but which one should I choose?


    2 replies

    Reply 7 weeks ago

    Ah yes, thanks for reporting! You will need the 5mm x 9mm one, I will edit the post!


    8 weeks ago on Step 2

    what are part 1 and 2 of the stl files for? The 3d viewer show it are some kind of hinges?!

    1 reply

    Reply 8 weeks ago

    Ah yes i looked into it, it seems that instructables viewer isn't working correctly. If you download the part then its the right one! thanks for letting me know, i will talk to instructables about this...

    Kink Jarfold

    2 months ago on Step 6

    There is nothing more enjoyable than making your own tool. Nicely done! --Kink--


    2 months ago

    Nice little tool!