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Who uses fractions like this???

Discussion in 'The Grumble' started by FramerKat, Dec 11, 2015.

  1. FramerKat

    FramerKat CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Just browsing the web for custom moulding vendors to get some different selection in our shop. Found this company and upon seeing what they carry, I keep seeing fractions like this: 1 19/50"

    Who does this? Is it an attempt at a conversion from decimal?
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  2. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    1.38" :D
  3. FramerKat

    FramerKat CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    That's what made me think that maybe it was an attempt at a conversion of 1.375...since it would round up to 1.38...and then to 1 38/100...thus the end result of 1 19/50. Quite convoluted if you ask me ;).
  4. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Since decimal is just another way of expressing a fraction based on 10, I'm surprised they don't just call it 1-375/1000.

    When I was a kid, my parents house was on a property comprised of "1-1/7" acres. At least that's what they told everyone. I guess it was just more than an eighth...
  5. Pat Murphey

    Pat Murphey SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Presto's wholesale pricelist has that kind of rounding.
  6. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    David could that have been because they used to measure in archaic forms like rods and lengths? 1 1/7 acres is almost 50,000 sqft so maybe it was so many rods by some many more... shrug
  7. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    I don't think so. I believe it was a relatively "modern" subdivision, i.e. since the 50s. I'm sure that on the deed and survey it said 1.14 acres or something like that, and they just figured out the nearest fraction, even though it wasn't a "conventional" one.
  8. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    A pint of water weighs a pound and a quarter.
  9. MarkyW

    MarkyW SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Well, if it was 1.375 they should have said 1 3/8 because that is exactly what it is.
    FramerKat likes this.
  10. Bill Henry-

    Bill Henry- SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    What? Are you saying that the saying, "A pint's a pound the world around" is a lie?

    I'm severely disheartened. :oops:
    FramerKat likes this.
  11. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    is it that some of the stuff is actually european manufactured and so being converted from millimetres?

    like say something is 50mm etc
  12. FramerKat

    FramerKat CGF II, Certified Grumble Framer Level 2

    Exactly...they have an odd way of saying 1 3/8" ;-).
  13. Dave

    Dave SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    We had one and a half dozen kids in our family... same mom.

    That's right... Seven.
    FramerKat likes this.
  14. Bill Henry-

    Bill Henry- SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    How many is that in metric? :rolleyes:
    FramerKat likes this.
  15. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Or, half a baker's dozen.
  16. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    What is the difference between six dozen dozen and half a dozen dozen?
    shayla and FramerKat like this.
  17. Grey Owl

    Grey Owl SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    If you think about a machine shop that is currently using CMC equipment [computerized MACHINE cutting equipment], you can now set the equipment up digitally to .01, .001, and some to .0001, or .00001 of an inch.

    In the past, for machining, many would only cut to 1/100th of an inch (with a few thousands allowable variance). So around a machine shop, they would not say 3/8, but would say the nearest decimal equivalent, either .37 or .38, because you can not set the equipment to 3/8.

    For some old timers, instead of saying 38/100ths, they would simplify it to a more simple fraction of 19/50'ths.

    So as this is for cutting wood, not metal, most probably the equipment they are using to cut with is digital, and allows settings as close as .01 inches.
  18. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Ackuwally..... That points to a good reason for using the Metric system. Because it is a system. All measures are integrated starting with a cubic centimeter of water weighing exactly one gram.

    When I was at school it was all Imperial. And what you learn at school sticks hard despite what you learn later on in life. I use millimeters exclusively when cutting frames and mats. It's easier. But there is always the tendency to subconsciously convert to imperial to visualise it in your head. It's funny, but if I think 605mm I know what it looks like. But if someone gives me measurements in centimeters then it throws my right off. 60.5cm? Errrrrrrr.........? I know I just have to shift the decimal point but it's just not intuitive.
  19. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    One area that is really confusing and ambiguous is cooking. :confused:

    I sometime look up yootoob recipes and have a stab at them. Some I give up on as the variety of measures is weird. A cup? I have lots of cups and they all hold different volumes. Tablespoon? Heaped Tablespoon. How big is a stick of butter? Some things by weight and some by volume. If everything was by weight it would make things easier. How big is a big onion? How much is a splash?

    Same with temperature. What is 350ºF in C? My oven is in C exclusively. :rolleyes:
  20. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    Move to the States. End your metric misery.
  21. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I'd move to Canada but I don't think I could stand the excitement. :eek:

    Going back a few years there were great ructions in the UK when it became illegal to sell some stuff in imperial measurements. There is a story of a guy who went to a hardware shop and asked for 50ft of hosepipe. He was told very firmly by the shopkeeper that he couldn't have 50ft. he would have to have 15 meters. "OK", says the guy."Whatever". The shopkeeper then asked if he wanted 1/2" or 3/4" thick.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2015
    shayla likes this.
  22. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    Thats a very exiting anecdote.
  23. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    But then, I get exited about shinny frames.
    FramerKat likes this.
  24. Keith L Hewitt

    Keith L Hewitt SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    It will be a whole lot easier when the USA follows the rest of the world and goes metric.
    Its so simple :rolleyes:
    And when will you stop using ply as a way of saying the thickness. Ply is "almost" o_O meaningless.
    Just get your heads round 1mm is 40 point, 2 mm is 80 point,
    When using a CMC are you telling me you input so many PLY as the thickness ?:confused:
    FramerKat likes this.
  25. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Matboard is another kettle of worms. When I started it was thickness graded in 'sheets'. I think this is a hang-on from the days when it was made by sticking thin sheets together. Same with 'ply'.
    The stuff that art shops sold was '4-sheet'. The proper framer's stuff in packs of big sheets was '6 sheet'. Approx 1.5mm. Then there was 8-sheet, 10 sheet and 12-sheet. I haven't heard that term for ages.

    Glass is always in imperial. So is MDF, Plywood and most sheet materials. It's an 8'x4' sheet. :D I think this is due to the construction industry. Houses over here aren't Metric.
    FramerKat likes this.
  26. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Maybe one of you UK people can answer this for me. Do you still use miles per hour and miles per gallon? Before BBC Top Gear was canceled I used to watch it, and that's what they always used. Is it just an Americanized program and they convert for us, or is that what you use over there?
  27. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    :( Poor old Jeremy has been, to use his own words "un-busy",this year. Last seen plugging Amazon Prime. o_O

    Anyway, gas at the pumps is sold in liters. But apart from that it's all imperial. Never heard nobody say liters per kilometer. Or kilometers per hour. ;) No one says so-and-so lives 40 km away.
    Even youngsters.
    Ask them what a yard is and they are totally flummoxed though.

    My first job was in a warehouse and at the time they were busy converting all the accounts to metric. A 50lb bag became a 25kg bag. There were a few old boys working there at the time (I was but a nipper). Most had worked all their lives on farms and were used to 4 stone bags of peas and wotnot. They had great difficultly getting their heads around metric. One chap (ex-butcher) used to fill a barrel with natural plastic granules and add 3% colorant. So four bags in the barrel = 200lbs and weigh 6lb color and mix it up. When it came to kilos he would always chuck in an extra handful of color because as he reasoned 50lbs = 22.7kg. The new bags were 25kg ergo they needed a bit extra. Try as I might I couldn't convince him that 3% is 3% whether imperial or metric. So he carried on tipping 4 x 25kg bags in the barrel, weighing 3kg of color and chucking an extra bit in.
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2015
  28. shayla

    shayla WOW Framer

  29. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Pinches and dashes are actual dry measurements. minor increments of teaspoons. Splash and Dram are liquid measures. Your butter sticks will have cup equivalents on the paper. There are some websites that my wife uses that can double, triple the measures and you can switch from cup measures to metric to weights. Doubling a batch isn't just using twice as much some ingredients have to be lessened or increased to mix properly. Increasing and decreasing is more accurate using weights instead of cups.
  30. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    My father is from Germany, and brought some recipes with him (or, more likely, they were sent/delivered by his Mom to teach his 'mercan wife to cook proper...) and of course everything was by weight.

    We didn't have a scale (metric or Imperial), but we did have this little nifty cone shaped measurer. It actually measured volume, but was marked in grams for different common cooking ingredients. I'm sure I can find a pic somewhere on the net...

    shayla likes this.
  31. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    :D They say the best chefs never measure anything.

    Going back to the factory where I worked, there were a few guys who did 'sampling'. Setting up new jobs and trying to get the right plastic mixture. They would come along to the warehouse and collect a small amount few different raw materials and try a few mixes. Adding a bit of this and that until it was right. All good fun but often these thing went on a bit and another shift would take over and add a bit more here and there. Eventually someone would hit the right formula and then realise that they had a little bag of the ideal mix but had absolutely no idea of how to mix more. :confused:
    shayla likes this.
  32. Larry Peterson

    Larry Peterson PFG, Picture Framing God

    I have one of these:



    Per the specs:

    "It is marked in cups, ounces, milliliters, liters, pints, teaspoons, and tablespoons, providing instant conversion between US and metric measurements."

    It's especially good for measuring semi-solids like sour cream, warm butter and the like. You move the bottom to whatever measure you want, fill it to the rim and press out what you have measured into your mixing bowl.
  33. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    Keith, I hate to tell you, but metric, schmetric. The law here mandates metric. Since about 1982.

    Right. Food sold by the pound, except when the sellers want to hide a high price.

    The construction industry never went metric. Nor the framng industry. We buys scales in Imperial. Pounds rule. Cars have dual speedometers.

    Our proximity to the USA is one reason. The other is that that big ***** Trudeau wanted to move Canada as far from the USA as possible. He hated America. Thankfully America's leaders reciprocated.
    Keith L Hewitt likes this.
  34. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    My mom almost never measured anything, and when I was a kid I "invented" two machines to unlock the recipe: the Uncooker would make something back into dough again, and then the Separator would divvy up the ingredients so they could be measured...
    shayla likes this.
  35. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Strangely enough, my last Mercedes (made in Germany, not just "with German engineering") had only MPH on the speedo. Although I think you could change the digital display to metric.
  36. wpfay

    wpfay Angry Badger

    Well, to thicken the soup...when in Atlanta asking directions you are usually answered in time increments.
    Me: "How far is it to Alpharetta?"
    Them: "About an hour and a half."

    They're usually right.
    shayla likes this.
  37. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Lots of ambiguous measurements.....

    How big is a Tad? A Smigeon? A Gnat's Whisker? A Spiders Eyebrow.

    A Stones Throw? :confused:
    shayla likes this.
  38. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    I must admit if I had to work in Imperial when doing framing it would fry my brain. 1/16s are a bit too coarse and 1/32s are a bit too fiddly. In millimeters it's all whole numbers. And when you are working out mat borders you often have to multiply and divide. What's half of 4 and 7/32? What's half of 110? Calculators don't do fractions unless you convert them to a decimal figure.

    Why struggle? :cool:
  39. tedh

    tedh PFG, Picture Framing God

    That's why America became great. Didn't worry about the little things, like 32nds. Left them to you, then invented microwaves and missiles. The French invented tanks with five reverse gears, the Canadians, quiche, the Chinese, $1 calculators.

    What would you rather have, cars or /64ths?
  40. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    What's half of 105?

    Actually, that one's very easy - 2 and 7/64. (half of 4 is 2, and to halve a fraction, just double the denominator).

    You're using the wrong calculator. Very easily available in the land of fractions.

    That said, metric is much easier for many things. But we didn't get this way by taking the easy way out. Challenge builds character!
  41. Bob Doyle

    Bob Doyle SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Half of 110 is 11. Divide by two by removing a zero.
  42. Pat Murphey

    Pat Murphey SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    My Excel POS takes entries typed as fractions or decimals and displays answers as fractions in cells relating to measurement. Calculators convert decimal entries to octal, calculate the result and round to decimal for display. Why is decimal so important except to display (modern) currency?
  43. stcstc

    stcstc SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    my rangerover speedo is in KM/H, the fuel consumption can be in KM/L or MPG

    speed limits and distances are in KM/H

    the fun starts with photographers. who give me orders for prints in inches and them mount borders in mm, and i have my gunnar setup in mm
  44. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    Oh great. We got twelfths now. I even had to spellcheck the word. Whats 7/12 + 4 and 7/32?

    Challenge? That reminds me of the man who when asked why he kept banging his head on the wall replied, "It's so nice when I stop". :rolleyes:
  45. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Same as 4 and 7/12 + 7/32 :D

    But really, this is elementary addition. To add fractions find the lowest common denominator (at least you know what that is now, right?) and convert both fractions to that denominator.

    In the case of twelfths and thirty-seconds, it's 96.

    56/96 + 21/96 = 77/96; my final answer is 4 and 77/96.
  46. IFGL

    IFGL SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    That is fairly simple, but do you know what is much easier? Adding whole numbers, it is a lot quicker too.
    While you are fannying around finding denominators, we have done the job and moved on to the next one.
  47. prospero

    prospero SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    My ruler hasn't got 96ths on it. :(
  48. Jeff Rodier

    Jeff Rodier SPFG, Supreme Picture Framing God

    As a framer I have found that 1/8's are king. Some items need to be a long 1/8" and others a short 1/8".
    FramerKat and Keith L Hewitt like this.
  49. josephforthill

    josephforthill MGF, Master Grumble Framer

    I got into the habit of doing this working with graphic/page layout programs since you couldn't enter a fraction - it was also helpful for web, etc. since there was no guarantee of the needed fraction symbol.
  50. David Waldmann

    David Waldmann SGF, Supreme Grumble Framer

    Preaching to the choir here. I was just showing you how it's done. But the reality is that no one is going to be measuring framing related stuff in mixed twelfths and thirty-seconds. Sixteenths is plenty "fine" for almost anything, and easy to work with in the "standard" multiples - 1/2, 1/4s and 1/8s. In fact I have worked with some frame shops who work only in non-reduced sixteenths, i.e. 1/4 = 4/16.

    Then again, while the metric system is superior in many ways, it's not perfect. For instance, dividing a whole into thirds, or, say 100 shares of stock among three people - do you give one a bit extra, or take the chance that some time someone will sell another "fraction".

    So are you fully off fractions? No "quarter past eight" or "I'll take a half chicken breast". And I guess you probably don't have pizza so you never need to worry about whether it's going to be cut in .125 or .1666 size pieces.
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