The 9 Best Dial Calipers
We spent 25 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Dial calipers are precise measuring instruments used in both hobbies and professional settings, such as woodworking, auto repair, machining, and manufacturing. Capable of reading the inner and outer dimensions of fittings and clearances, as well as depth and incremental (or step) values, they're essential tools for ensuring that your projects adhere to accurate tolerances. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best dial caliper on Amazon.
9. Oshlun MTDCF-06
Accurately measure clearances while metal- or wood-working using the Oshlun MTDCF-06. Its adjustable dial allows for simple step readings thanks to graduations of both 0.01" and 1/64", as well as a thumb-operated knob that makes one-handed use easy.
- durable construction
- has some plastic parts
- slide is not super smooth
|Rating||3.9 / 5.0|
8. Shop Fox D3208
A budget-friendly favorite of woodworkers, the durable, stainless-steel Shop Fox D3208 works great as a carpenter's backup or in a contractor's field kit. It has a total length of 6 inches and its high-contrast face displays both fractions and decimals.
- integrated depth arm
- variable dial for easy calibration
- slightly inconsistent accuracy
|Rating||4.1 / 5.0|
7. iGaging 100-164
From a well-known producer of precision tools, the iGaging 100-164 is easy on the wallet and takes accurate measurements, with different types of graduations on opposite sides of its body. This is a budget-oriented option that may not be right for professional use.
- good choice for hobbyists
- action is somewhat rough
- jaw has excessive side play
|Rating||4.3 / 5.0|
6. Fowler 52-008-706
Made from hardened, stainless steel, with a heavy-duty spring as well as shock protection to ensure reliability, the Fowler 52-008-706 is suitable for mechanics' workshops or DIY enthusiasts. It's well-made, durable, and precise, making it great for accurate measurements.
- backed by one-year warranty
- easily-read graduated markings
- comes in foam-lined case
|Rating||4.4 / 5.0|
5. Anytime Tools 100-020
The six-inch, stainless-steel Anytime Tools 100-020 has high-precision gears for quick and easy dial adjustments. It comes in a padded plastic case and outperforms many more-expensive models, making it a great option for those on a budget.
- shock-resistant construction
- zero to 6-inch range
- has a thumbscrew for one-handed use
|Rating||4.9 / 5.0|
4. Fowler 72-030-006
One of the only models reviewed that takes both metric and imperial measurements, the Fowler 72-030-006 reads with an accuracy of 0.0005" or under 0.02 mm. Ceramic-coated contact points keep it accurate even when used in high-heat settings, like engine bays or workshops.
- aluminum dial and steel body
- holds a consistent zero position
- not the most durable choice
|Rating||4.1 / 5.0|
3. Mitutoyo 505-675-56
Offering high-end quality at a reasonable price, the Mitutoyo 505-675-56 is one of the most respected choices for taking inside, outside, depth and step measurements. It is graduated to 0.001”, and has a shock-protected gear mechanism for long-lasting durability.
- hardened stainless-steel
- titanium-nitride finish resists wear
- high-visibility black dial face
|Rating||4.5 / 5.0|
2. Brown & Sharpe 599
From a popular brand among top aerospace firms in the USA, the Brown & Sharpe 599 is a high-precision model designed for true professionals. It's available in six versions with different measuring specifications, so you can find the one for your exact needs.
- lock screw secures jaw position
- accurate to din 862 standards
- covered rack keeps debris out
|Brand||Brown & Sharpe|
|Rating||4.6 / 5.0|
1. Starrett 1202F
Ask any metalworking professional about the Starrett 1202F and they will tell you it's a quality tool from a well-regarded company. This model has a 0 to 6" measurement range and 0.001" graduations, and comes with an optional NIST certification for high-end applications.
- high-precision hardened contacts
- great for daily use
- fraction- and decimal-marked dial
|Rating||4.6 / 5.0|