Best Micrometers

Best Outside Micrometer

Micrometers are accurate measuring instruments that are available at an affordable price. They are designed to measure to an accuracy of .0001” or .0025mm.

This is achieved using a precision ground thread with 40 threads per inch (T.P.I) on the spindle.

There are many different types of micrometer available with many specialized uses, but In this article I will be reviewing the most common and most useful, the outside micrometer.

If you just want to know what micrometer I recommend then here it is.

Anytime Tools Premium Outside Micrometer Set 0-4"/0.0001"...*
  • Includes 4 Micrometers with measuring ranges: 0 - 1", 1 - 2", 2 - 3", 3 - 4"
  • Super Hard Carbide Tipped
  • Complete with calibration standards and wrenches
  • Ratchet handle for precise application of force.
  • Fitted padded case included!
Description
Anytime Tools Premium Outside Micrometer Set 0-4"/0.0001"...*
Mitutoyo 103-922 Outside Micrometer Set with Standards, 0-3"...*
Anytime Tools Micrometer 0-1" /0.0001 Outside Premium...*
Mitutoyo 103-260 Outside Micrometer, Baked-Enamel Finish,...*
Mitutoyo 293-340-30 Digital Micrometer, Inch/Metric, Ratchet...*
Digital Micrometer, Professional Inch/Metric Thickness...*
Preview
Anytime Tools Premium Outside Micrometer Set 0-4"/0.0001"...*
Mitutoyo 103-922 Outside Micrometer Set with Standards, 0-3"...*
Anytime Tools Micrometer 0-1" /0.0001 Outside Premium...*
Mitutoyo 103-260 Outside Micrometer, Baked-Enamel Finish,...*
Mitutoyo 293-340-30 Digital Micrometer, Inch/Metric, Ratchet...*
Digital Micrometer, Professional Inch/Metric Thickness...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-4" Range
0-3" Range
0-1" Range
0-1" Range
0-1" Range
0-1" Range
Recommended
Description
Anytime Tools Premium Outside Micrometer Set 0-4"/0.0001"...*
Preview
Anytime Tools Premium Outside Micrometer Set 0-4"/0.0001"...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-4" Range
Recommended
Description
Mitutoyo 103-922 Outside Micrometer Set with Standards, 0-3"...*
Preview
Mitutoyo 103-922 Outside Micrometer Set with Standards, 0-3"...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-3" Range
Recommended
Description
Anytime Tools Micrometer 0-1" /0.0001 Outside Premium...*
Preview
Anytime Tools Micrometer 0-1" /0.0001 Outside Premium...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-1" Range
Recommended
Description
Mitutoyo 103-260 Outside Micrometer, Baked-Enamel Finish,...*
Preview
Mitutoyo 103-260 Outside Micrometer, Baked-Enamel Finish,...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-1" Range
Recommended
Description
Mitutoyo 293-340-30 Digital Micrometer, Inch/Metric, Ratchet...*
Preview
Mitutoyo 293-340-30 Digital Micrometer, Inch/Metric, Ratchet...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-1" Range
Recommended
Description
Digital Micrometer, Professional Inch/Metric Thickness...*
Preview
Digital Micrometer, Professional Inch/Metric Thickness...*
mechanical
Digital
Measuring Range
0-1" Range
Recommended

Product Reviews

Anytime tools 0”-4” outside micrometer set

This set contains four micrometers enabling you to measure up to 4”. They come in a protective box which also contains wrenches and three standards. 

Anytime Tools Premium Outside Micrometer Set 0-4"/0.0001"...*
  • Includes 4 Micrometers with measuring ranges: 0 - 1", 1 - 2", 2 - 3", 3 - 4"
  • Super Hard Carbide Tipped
  • Complete with calibration standards and wrenches
  • Ratchet handle for precise application of force.
  • Fitted padded case included!

These micrometers feature carbide tips for wear resistance and they all have a vernier scale. This lets you measure to a tolerance of .0001”.

The standards will let you regularly check and zero your micrometers to keep your measurements consistent.

This set is very economically priced, especially for four micrometers with standards included.

My only concern would be taking a chance on the build quality and how accurate the standards are.

Ideally you should use a high quality set of standards from a reputable manufacturer to calibrate them, at least initially. 

A measuring tool is only as good as the standards you check them with.

I really think the value of this set is too good to pass on, the 4” measuring range is perfect for the home machinist.

My main concern would be with the standards, if you had some gauge blocks you could check the standards against those to confirm their accuracy.

This set gets my recommendation.

Pros

  • Zero to 4” measuring distance
  • Excellent value
  • Includes protective case
  • Carbide tipped anvil and spindle
  • Vernier scale for .0001” accuracy 

Cons

  • Taking a chance on build quality
  • I would want to check them with quality standards

Mitutoyo 0” – 3” micrometer set

If you want the best and you want guaranteed quality then you do not need to look any further than this set of three micrometers from Mitutoyo. This set comes with wrenches and two standards for zero adjustment. 

Sale
Mitutoyo 103-922 Outside Micrometer Set with Standards, 0-3"...*
  • Carbide measuring faces
  • Clear graduations on satin chrome finish
  • Hammertone baked enamel finish
  • Supplied with Standards
  • Fitted plastic case

The Micrometers have carbide tips for wear resistance and ratchet stops for consistent readings. 

The marketing information claims a resolution of .0001”, i’m not sure that means that they have vernier scales or not.

But what I do know from experience is that they are not essential, you still can read to within a few tenths without them. This is more than good enough for 99.9% of work you will do.

A protective case keeps everything organised and clean when they are not being used.

Even though this set only measures up to 3” this range would still be enough for most if not all home or hobby machinists. 

I would definitely recommend this set if you want professional quality, although the price may be prohibitive to some.

Pros

  • Zero to 3” measuring distance
  • Guaranteed quality and accuracy
  • Includes standards you can trust
  • Carbide tipped anvil and spindle
  • Marketing info claims a vernier scale for .0001” accuracy  

Cons

  • Higher cost

Anytime tools 0-1” micrometer

If you are only looking for individual micrometers and not a set, anytime tools offer this option as well. 

Anytime Tools Micrometer 0-1" /0.0001 Outside Premium...*
  • Balanced frame and thimble design to ensure easy handling and better readability
  • Ratchet thimble and fixed thimble for precise application of pressure on object
  • Laser etched graduations and satin chrome finish for super precision and no glare
  • Thick carbide anvils
  • Measuring range: 0-1" Accuracy: 0.0001"

The information provided by the manufacturer claims they have a balanced frame and thimble design to ensure easy handling and better readability. I’m not sure what they mean by this, it appears to just be marketing nonsense.

That aside, they are the same product that comes in the set, so the main advantage is being able to buy them individually if you only need one for a specific task.

If you check out this product on Amazon, you will also see that there are sizes available all the way up to a 5”-6” micrometer size.

Pros

  • Excellent value
  • Includes protective case
  • Carbide tipped anvil and spindle
  • Vernier scale for .0001” accuracy 

Cons

  • Taking a chance on build quality
  • I would want to check it with a quality standard

Mitutoyo mechanical 0-1” mic

If you want to buy a professional quality micrometer, buying individual instead of a set will help bring down the cost. This one micrometer will set you back nearly as much as the set of four ‘anytime tools’ micrometers, but this is definitely a ‘get what you pay for’ tool.

Mitutoyo 103-260 Outside Micrometer, Baked-Enamel Finish,...*
  • Carbide measuring faces
  • Clear graduations on satin chrome finish
  • Hammertone baked enamel finish
  • Ratchet stop
  • Supplied in fitted plastic case

This particular micrometer does not have a vernier scale for accurately reading to tenths of a thousand inch.

The micrometers I own and use regularly don’t have vernier scales and it has never been an issue.

Most milling machines, especially hobby cnc machines, are unlikely to achieve that small a resolution anyway.

Pros

  • Guaranteed quality and accuracy
  • Buying individual micrometer reduces cost
  • Carbide tipped anvil and spindle
  • Includes protective case and wrench 

Cons

  • No vernier scale

Mitutoyo digital 0-1” mic

I have never personally owned a digital micrometer but I do use them at work. They are more expensive and definitely have advantages over a traditional mechanical micrometer.

Sale
Mitutoyo 293-340-30 Digital Micrometer, Inch/Metric, Ratchet...*
  • Calibrated micrometer measures 0 to 1" (0 to 25mm) with 0.00005" (0.001mm) resolution and +/- 0.00005" accuracy, for taking outside diameter measurements in harsh workshop conditions
  • LCD screen displays in inches and metric units
  • Plastic components are oil-resistant and measuring faces are carbide-tipped for durability
  • Ratchet stop to help provide uniform pressure for precise, repeatable measurements
  • Ingress Protection certified IP65 for protection against dust and water

They are easier to read and have a higher resolution.

But the most useful function, in my opinion, is the ability to change the unit of measurement from metric to imperial.

Digital micrometers in machine shops are used almost exclusively in dedicated inspection departments, they are not necessary for a machinist to use every day. 

Any machinist I know that has bought one did so for vanity reasons, basically so they can say theirs is better than yours.

Anyway, if you do want one, they are awesome, and Mitutoyo is the brand to get.

Spend the money and you will receive an accurate and reliable micrometer that will last for a lifetime of careful use.

Pros

  • Guaranteed quality and accuracy
  • Easy to read
  • Coolant proof
  • Measures in imperial and metric
  • Carbide tipped anvil and spindle
  • Includes protective case

Cons

  • Expensive vanity purchase, unless you are a machine shop inspector or have a specific need for a higher accuracy measuring tool.

Rexbeti digital 0-1” micrometer

Buying an inexpensive digital micrometer is a risk. You do generally get what you pay for when buying digital tools so I would advise against buying this or any of the dozens of similar clones.

Sale
Digital Micrometer, Professional Inch/Metric Thickness...*
  • 0-1" (0 to 25mm) digital micrometer with 0.001" (0.001mm) resolution and +/- 0.0001" accuracy
  • 2 measuring modes : Inch / Metric
  • Large LCD display
  • Ratchet stop for using flexible
  • Hard protective case for protection

If you do get one don’t expect it to last too long.

Pros

  • Easy to read
  • Measures in imperial and metric
  • Includes protective case
  • Less expensive than the Mitutoyo

Cons

  • Questionable build quality and reliability

Conclusion

Using a micrometer when making accurate parts is really helpful. Anyone who has had experience using digital calipers and micrometers will tell you how much easier they are to get reliable, repeatable and accurate readings. 

If you have never used one before, learning to read them takes a little getting used to.

A lack of practice can lead to an incorrect reading. I have an explanation and show a few reading examples in my article ‘How to use machinist measuring tools’.

If you haven’t already, check out my recommendation of the Anytime Tools 0-4″ Micrometer Set.

Share on pinterest
Share on email
Share on print

Table of Contents