The best tape measure I’ve ever used

Saturday, I went into my local Rockler looking for some 2-1/2″ dust collection hose, unfortunately they where sold out. While chatting with the clerk, she pointed out the new FastCap ProCarpenter tapes. As soon as I examined a tape, I knew I had to have one.  The tapes have several interesting features, but the one that really caught my eye, was that the hook doesn’t jiggle like every Stanley I’ve ever handled. Below is a YouTube video covering some of the tapes other features, along with some close-up shots of mine. For reference, I purchased the 16 foot Flatback model.

Posted in: General


  • Brian
    June 8, 2010

    The “hook jiggle” is actually an important part of accuracy.

    Try this: Take a cut board about 12″ long, measure it and record your reading. Say it’s 11-5/16″ for the sake of this example.

    Now, push the end of the board upto you table saw fence (could be any flat surface). Remeasure the board again by pushing the end of the no wiggle tape against the fence and I’d bet it’s off by about 1/16″

    The wiggle in the hook accoutns for that differance. The hook moves back anf forth to account for it’s thickness. If the hook doesn’t move 1/2 of your measurments will be wrong.

  • Dan
    June 8, 2010

    Wow, I never thought about the wiggle being useful for inside measurements. I always considered it a sign of poor craftsmanship, little did I know it’s supposed to jiggle. I’ll have to keep my old Stanley’s around after all.

  • Jim
    February 3, 2011

    Brian’s right in general. But the tape shown above is called a flatback tape and is made by Fastcap. The flatback tape has a blade that is flat. So, in use, it is only pulled to make a measurement. Trying to push it would be like trying to push a string. So it isn’t useful when you want to measure from a wall six feet away to a window in from of you. It won’t remain straight. But it is still my favorite tape measure even with that limitation. It has a pencil sharpener built in, two ways to lock the tape measure when it’s extended and there is blank space on the flat blade so you can write notes to yourself as you tape measurements. Fascap makes other tapes as well and they do have the ability to extend several feet without support.

  • Denis
    April 1, 2012

    To bad a center find tape measure is not one of the choices.

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