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Happy Thanksgiving Y'all!
I don't usually get too excited about something as simple as a tape measure, but this one is different. A couple of months ago, I picked up a FastCap Flatback tape.
http://www.amazon.com/FastCap-Flatb...d=1448503702&sr=8-1&keywords=fastcap+flatback

You know the drill . . . you lock the tape down so you can roll the edge of the ,tape down to the wood with one hand and mark with the other. Then, the tape box topples over and off the edge of your workpiece. Or you hold the tape box in one hand and attempt to roll the edge of the tape down with and mark with the other "free" hand until the hook comes free and the tape goes zinging back into the box.

This tape has no cup in the blade at all. It lies flat on the workpiece so you don't have to roll it to get the edge down to the wood. The box has a fairly broad bottom so it doesn't topple over so easily. The tape is black on white and you can mark on it with a pencil, then erase it by rubbing with a moistened finger. Ready-made Story Pole! The fractions between inch marks are spelled out. Now I can read a tape. I read 5 and 13/16, not Five and a half plus Five little marks. But I find I make fewer mistakes when the marks are identified, especially when reading the tape upside down.

Much as I like it, this tape won't replace all your others. It has zero standout; it's limp as a wet noodle. So it's no good for reach-across or vertical measuring. It's not for inside measuring because the hook is rigidly attached and has no float.

I won't quite say it's transformed my woodworking experience, but it's certainly made it less frustrating and error-prone. Anytime I can do that for 8 Bucks, it's a good day.

I have no financial interest in FastCap. Your mileage may vary, etc., etc.
 

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Thanks for posting, I did not know about it. Will make me a good shop tape, I am frequently trying to measure curves and around boxes and such and it is an add-em-up exercise, to just get a ball park measurement.
Gotta sign off and order 3-4 0f those. Will make some good stocking stuffers.

Herb
 

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Thanks for posting, I did not know about it. Will make me a good shop tape, I am frequently trying to measure curves and around boxes and such and it is an add-em-up exercise, to just get a ball park measurement.
Gotta sign off and order 3-4 0f those. Will make some good stocking stuffers.

Herb
You can also get it with the traditionally marked blade, called "Old Standby". Imperial/Metric combination is also available.
 
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I would like to see a tape made for right handed people. When I measure I hold the tape in my left hand so I can mark with
my right, and the numbers are always upside down. Sometimes the 3/8 & 5/8 get mixed up and your off on the measurement. I would like to see a tape where the numbers are right side up when you use your left hand. Thanks for the info on this tape Andy.
 

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Thanks Andy, I'll check this out. I've also been wanting to try FastCap's zero clearance tape for miter saws. They're an interesting company.
 

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I would like to see a tape made for right handed people. When I measure I hold the tape in my left hand so I can mark with
my right, and the numbers are always upside down. Sometimes the 3/8 & 5/8 get mixed up and your off on the measurement. I would like to see a tape where the numbers are right side up when you use your left hand. Thanks for the info on this tape Andy.
I guess I'm always searching for the perfect tape. I have dozens. I have one of those too, but I wasn't able to train myself to use it. Old habits . . . .

Here's one by Lee Valley.

10' Tapes for Cabinetmakers - Lee Valley Tools

and another by Fastcap

http://www.amazon.com/FastCap-PSSR1...8&qid=1448544300&sr=8-2&keywords=fastcap+tape

And another Fastcap that reads from top or bottom.

FastCap PSSR25 25 foot Lefty/Righty Measuring Tape - Left Handed Tape Measure - Amazon.com
 

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I would like to see a tape made for right handed people. When I measure I hold the tape in my left hand so I can mark with
my right, and the numbers are always upside down. Sometimes the 3/8 & 5/8 get mixed up and your off on the measurement. I would like to see a tape where the numbers are right side up when you use your left hand. Thanks for the info on this tape Andy.
Here's one example...

R1 Tape Measure for the right handed

...others available...
 

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I would like to see a tape made for right handed people. When I measure I hold the tape in my left hand so I can mark with
my right, and the numbers are always upside down. Sometimes the 3/8 & 5/8 get mixed up and your off on the measurement. I would like to see a tape where the numbers are right side up when you use your left hand. Thanks for the info on this tape Andy.
Woodcraft has what you need. It is a Fastcap product called a Lefty/Righty. It even has a built in pencil sharpener. Traditional marking at the top and a mirror image on the bottom. This is what Fastcap calls a standard reverse. No more reading and marking upside down.

We are so brainwashed by what was available in the past that people laugh when you tell them that there is such a thing as a right and left hand tape. What is common in the stores is a left hand tape (for left handed people). It reads fine for left handed people measuring left to right but is upside down for the average right handed person, who measures right to left.

I can't count the number of times I mis-marked over the years because of reading the tape marks upside down. Now, with a right handed tape the numbers are right side up on the near side when measuring from right to left.

FastCap - 888-443-3748 - FastCap - Woodworking Tools
 

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I got the lefty/righty for my birthday, and it really does help. But keep it locked up, so it doesn't walk off like tape measures tend to do.
 

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Great Info, Andy! I'll keep an eye-out for those and especially look at them next time I'm at WoodCraft or Peachtree - both of which are enroute for us during the holidays! BTW I did engineering work for so many years - where there may be 4-8 people looking-over drawings on a conference room table, that I learned very well to read and write upside-down, inside-out and backwards! It's fun and a great activity for inquisitive children! For me the right handed versus left handed consideration is nil, but I like the feature mentioned about the tape base "just standing there"!

Y'all have a nice Thanksgiving!

Otis and Joy Guillebeau from Auburn, Georgia
 

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Yeah, that's pretty inexpensive. I haven't seen one but at that price I question the quality.
Don't, they're well built. Comparable to or better then the Stanley's. They are, also, rubber encased, have positive lock-up, and the retraction spring seems to be good. As mentioned they sit flat and in addition, they have a finger button on the bottom to keep the tape from retracting when extending the tape to make a measurement. This is in addition to the traditional tape lock on the front.

I have not personally checked the accuracy, yet, but they are supposed to have very tight tolerances unlike some of the Stanley tapes.
 

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I have both the R1 and the Fastcap, and would never go back to the "normal" tapes. I prefer the Fastcap because I like to mark from the tape down (haven't switched to metric yet). The bigger 16' Fastcap is wide enough to sit by itself, the Tape Stand from Lee Valley solves the tippy problem with the smaller tapes.

I like the idea of the flat tape though, may drop a word in Santa's ear about one.
 

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I have both the R1 and the Fastcap, and would never go back to the "normal" tapes. I prefer the Fastcap because I like to mark from the tape down (haven't switched to metric yet). The bigger 16' Fastcap is wide enough to sit by itself, the Tape Stand from Lee Valley solves the tippy problem with the smaller tapes.

I like the idea of the flat tape though, may drop a word in Santa's ear about one.
 

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I have both the R1 and the Fastcap, and would never go back to the "normal" tapes. I prefer the Fastcap because I like to mark from the tape down (haven't switched to metric yet). The bigger 16' Fastcap is wide enough to sit by itself, the Tape Stand from Lee Valley solves the tippy problem with the smaller tapes.

I like the idea of the flat tape though, may drop a word in Santa's ear about one.
 

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Sorry about the multiple posts, keep having the problem where everything locks up - I'll be typing away, look up and see I'm a couple of words ahead. And then the cursor disappears and I can't type anything for a while until it comes back.
 
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