If you think of a “sexy tool,” a tape measure probably is one of the last things that you’d consider. But at the very least, most of us probably have our favorite one. That is when we can remember where we sat it, at least. On my apron, I keep a 12‘ vintage Starrett. It’s a great size for in the shop when I’m working with project parts. However, when I’m out running my sawmill or searching for the right piece of lumber, I need something a little more robust. The ProBlade tape measure from ToughBuilt (shown here) has become my favorite tape measure to carry around.
The ProBlade tape measure is simply built differently—it has a heft to it that screams quality, and the rubberized coating of the housing protects it from drops on the job site. And while I appreciate the “blade control button” that lets you temporarily halt the blade retraction, my favorite feature is the blade itself.
The blade of the ProBlade has a matte linen texture. While this may seem like a minor detail, it makes it extremely easy to read even in the brightest daylight. The blade is also labeled with eighth-inch marks, and while I don’t consider this super necessary, it is a nice affirmation when you quickly glance at it. On the back side of the blade, the measurements are clocked at 90°. This means that when you’re measuring the height of something (or the depth of a hole), you don’t need to tilt your head to read the measurement. Like all items I’ve used from ToughBuilt, the ProBlade tape measure is built like a tank and is available in both 16‘ and 25‘ lengths.
Here are some supplies and tools we find essential in our everyday work around the shop. We may receive a commission from sales referred by our links; however, we have carefully selected these products for their usefulness and quality.