Metric vs Imperial systems


The imperial system has evolved over time:

PS> It is said that he used his own foot and thumb as the standard for “feet and inches”, so every time you measure something using the Imperial system you pay homage to a long dead English King. :rofl:

To make it more complicated the units used in the US Customary System is not the same as the eqv. British Imperial Units:

COE surveyors measure using feet divided in tens so a measure of 2 feet and 8 inches would show on the tape as 2.75’

The Metric base unit for mass is gram. 1000 gr. =1 Kg. which is the base unit in SI system.

To understand the Metric and SI systems you only have to know the seven SI base units,
which are comprised of:
And the Roman prefixes:

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Except everyone in metric countries gives weight (a force) in kilograms.

Mass is not weight. Weight is a force and thus should be expressed in Newtons.

Therein is another can of worms… with the commonly used names for big numbers >>>

Giga = 10^9 = billion
Tera = 10^12 = trillion >>>>>> mainly in the USA
Peta = 10^15 = quadrillion

Giga = 10^9 = milliard
Tera = 10^12 = billion >>>>>>> mainly elsewhere
Peta = 10^15 = billiard

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measurement based on decimal is a great and weight in kg makes lots of calculations simple but after then its change for changes sake.

Engineering uses grams for small things, that works better as does mils for small volumes of liquid
Bur using thousands is much more useful in small engineering measurements as is PSI

The average forklift driver trying to make sense of the buildings floor rating kN/Msquared, looking for the weight in kN of the box he has picked up…not

What happened to BAR that very useful in the diving industry?

The talent pool is so shallow that I’ve had to teach prep cooks that 4 x a 1/4 teaspoon is 1 teaspoon. Or the scale up feature on internet recipes that calls for 17 tablespoons, and the prep cook measures them out individually. Try asking for 3/8 of a pound of something at the deli counter and see what you end up with. Personally I prefer metric recipes that call out everything by weight.


Pressure: Pa
Force: N

whats BAR, imperial?

So I put my 1000kg parcel on a 1 metre by 1 metre pallet on the floor but now have to work out in newtowns if its too heavy for that floor.

1000 Kg x 9.81 m/s^2 = 9810 N
area 1 x 1 = 1m2

pressure = 9810 N / 1 m^2 = 9810 Pa.

So complicated…

I’ll get that printed on a card for every forklift along with a calculator for the drivers, yep thats simple.

well if a calculator is needed for that…

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no problem most driving a forklift here in asia are illiterate.
You can do a verbal exam for your license like most licences in asia.

I think Scott Manley said it best:

There are two kinds of countries: Those who use the metric system, and those who used the metric system to land on the moon and the later crashed a space probe into Mars because they confused metric and imperial units.


I’ve seen this happen with different ways to express lat-long . I was dispatched to supervise a dive operation and there was no dive team at the location at the appointed time. The lat-long in minutes was somehow written using decimal points instead by the dive barge company. The resulting snafu was a monumental waste of resources.

You have a very negative view on most things, especially anything Asian.
Any facts and figures to back up your claim??

Source: Scuba Diving Terms - A Dummies Guide | Underwater Asia

Geez, live and work in asia and you will find many foreign workers cant read, hence just about every license they need in Singapore can be obtained verbally in many languages.
I cant believe you do not know that?

I have met a few local workers too that struggle. According to the Department of Statistics, in 2020, there were about 283,000 Singapore residents aged 15-64 years old who are illiterate in English. › bar-to-atmospheres-conversion › 1-bar-to-atmospheres.html
Bar : The bar is a unit of measurement for pressure. It is widely used in the daily life particularly in European countries, though that is a non-SI unit. 1 bar is equal to 100,000 Pascals, which is close approximately to atmospheric pressure, so it is often used to represent atmospheric pressure rather than standard atmosphere (101325 Pascals).

There is much confusion about different measurements for the same length, weight etc. I thing it’s silly and expensive. There is nothing nationalistic about math, just choose one standard and get on with it.
The most ignorant thing I have run across lately is the measurement in SE Asia of air conditioning. It is measured in horsepower. When I finally got a conversion from their definition of hp to BTU, Kcal and joules it made no practical sense.Insanity

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