2013 – 14 Strategy, Process, and Programming

Gauge blocks are usually made either from hardened alloy tool steels or from cemented carbides (such as tungsten carbide or tantalum carbide). Often the carbide has a hardness of 1500 Vickers hardness. Long series blocks are made from high-quality steel having cross section (35 x 9 mm) with holes for clamping two slips together.These are also available in carbon steel material. Steel blocks are hardened and tempered. The hardness is important because it slows down the gauge's rate of wear during use (this is why other kinds of gauges, such as pins, thread plugs, and rings, are also hardened.) The cutting of the blocks to size is accomplished with grinding followed by lapping. Usually no plating or other coating is involved. Blocks are kept very lightly oiled, and are stored and used in dry climate-controlled conditions; unplated, uncoated steel gauge blocks can last for decades without rusting.

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