When you’re working with scaled drawings, converting the dimensions from drawing to real world isn’t always easy. A new option — transparent scale ruler overlays — offers a handy DIY alternative that promises to make the job easier.
You can certainly use a regular ruler — and hope you don’t make a mistake while converting in your head. Or you can use a scaled ruler — and hope you don’t accidentally flip it to the wrong scale while working. E-Z Scale printed transparent overlays lay on top of your plans, offering a third option. They’re only printed with one scale per sheet, so you won’t change scales accidentally.
The E-Z Scale is a set of three grids, one each for 12:1, 24:1, and 48:1 scales. They’re printed on durable vinyl and sell for $20 plus shipping. Other scales are available in the company’s online store for $7 per sheet, so your needs for architectural and engineering drawings (twelfths and tenths) should be covered.
And for the rest of us cheapskates, there’s a nearly free alternative: if your printer can handle overhead transparency film (some films melt in laser printers!), hit up the Incompetech Graph Paper Generator. This free site cooks up PDF files with all sorts of grids, which you then download and print. You can even set the line color!