The 10 Best Contour Gauges
This wiki has been updated 23 times since it was first published in October of 2016. If you're about to install tile, carpet, or linoleum in an area that requires working around plumbing, stairs, or an irregular floor plan, you have two options: eyeball the project and hope you happen to cut the materials correctly, or use one of these contour gauges and record the exact shape of the objects in the space. These tools are helpful when it comes to woodwork and crafting, too. When users buy our independently chosen editorial choices, we may earn commissions to help fund the Wiki.
November 11, 2020:
Designed for recording the profile of a surface, these contour gauges are then used to transfer that shape to the material, whether that be tile, wood, carpet, or vinyl. The main variations are the size of the tool, the working length of the teeth, and the material it's made from, and in this update, we have included options with locking mechanisms to prevent distortion when moving them around.
We removed the Goldblatt Tool Company PaceSetter due to reports of the pins being too loose which causes inaccuracies. In its place, we selected the AthlChamp Contour Duplicator which features a locking clamp to hold the shape firmly during marking. It also has long tooth depth, making it suitable for deep profiles. We added the Beewarm Gauge Master, which is similar to the Proster 3 Piece, in that it is composed of long and short tools for different sized projects. The Beewarm, however, does include one lockable gauge. Also added was the Saker Connection Profile, this two-piece kit comprises two six-inch profiles that can be joined together to create a single 12-inch tool, it also incorporates a locking clamp on both pieces. Finally, we included the Big Horn 19062, which boasts a 20-inch working length, making it suitable for larger projects or for taking multiple measurements at once, however, the teeth are quite short, so it may struggle with deep profiles.
May 16, 2019:
Currently, the General Tools 833 still comes out on top, thanks to its length, price, and usability. Unlike some, it features a connection point so that you can attach two together, thereby doubling its size. But because 20 inches may not be long enough for everyone, we decided to add the Junsh 2-Piece, which has no limit on how many pieces you can fasten together for use. Of course, you'll need to purchase additional units to take advantage of this functionality. It also can be joined in the middle with a swiveling joint, so you can measure at an angle. As for metal options, we have elected to keep the Empire Level 2754 but remove the Johnson Level & Tool 2206. As to the former, the pins don't move all that well, which is a double-edge sword. On the one hand, you can trace around them easily, but on the other, it becomes tiresome to manipulate. Regarding the latter, the pins have a tendency to fall out, leading to poor longterm durability. Finally, we added the Zhehao Duplicator; it's short but inexpensive, making it a good option for occasional use and small jobs.
Ridgid 10-Inch From tile to solid wood and more, it doesn't matter what type of material you're working with, the Ridgid 10-Inch makes measuring simple. Its bright orange coloring offers fine visibility for hassle-free work, and it holds contour better than some flimsier plastic options. ridgid.com