# English Units Are Goofy

1. Jun 10, 2010

A Jigger is three mouthfuls.

A furlong is "The distance a plow team could be driven without rest."

A mile is eight furlongs.

A league is "intended to be an hour's walk."

I'm not even going to get into the mess that is the definitions for weight....

English Units

2. Jun 10, 2010

### cesiumfrog

That's why the entire world (except for Burma, Liberia and one other odd backward country) has switched to metric.

3. Jun 10, 2010

### waht

How is a quarter pound with cheese called in Europe?

4. Jun 10, 2010

Royaleeeeeee with Cheese

5. Jun 10, 2010

### waht

:rofl::rofl:

Pulp Fiction

6. Jun 10, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

What's wrong with weight? Legally and colloquially weight a measure of mass. Yes, things do get confusing when physicists try to get picky and claim that weight is a unit of force. And yes, the word 'pound' is a bit overloaded. A pound force makes a pound (mass) accelerate at one foot per second squared. At one point in time a (tower) pound of silver was worth one pound sterling (money). No problem. The mass of one pound of silver is obviously less than the mass of a pound of feathers. Avoirdupois pounds, troy pounds, tower pounds, merchant pounds, London pounds, pounds force, pound sterling, Manx pound, Jersey pound, ...; sure there are a lot of different pounds with different units, but aren't they are all rather obvious? Where exactly is this mess about with you are complaining?

7. Jun 10, 2010

You wouldn't say that's a mess?

8. Jun 10, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

Well, dang, you beat me to it. I was going to show that exact same crystal-clear diagram.

9. Jun 10, 2010

### Staff: Mentor

BTW, the diagram omits the distinction between a long ton and a short ton.

10. Jun 10, 2010

### Mech_Engineer

I definitely prefer to make all of my engineering calculations in SI due to the ease of unit handling and unambiguous nature. Be that as it may, I still can't help but "think" in inches, feet, pounds, and Fahrenheit.

... my company's engineering drawings are basically all in English (inches, feet, pounds) save for a small select few, and I can imagine what a nightmare it would be to try and "convert" all of those drawings to SI. I'm convinced the main reason the US hasn't "officially" converted to SI is because of the sheer number of companies (engineering, fabrication, assembly, etc.) that are dependent on a large database of English data/calculations/drawings.

Still, even in the US many companies do their work in SI exclusively, mainly driven by customer requirements. My opinion is that companies should strive to meet customer demands, not government regulation. If a company's customers require SI drawings and calcs, they will provide them. Simple as that.

11. Jun 10, 2010

### mgb_phys

Except for the adult entertainment market !

12. Jun 10, 2010

### leroyjenkens

7 "Avoirdupois" is equal to one "clove, nail" and 2 "clove, nail" is equal to one "Avoirdupois"?

13. Jun 10, 2010

### Jack21222

And whomever worked on that Mars lander around 11 years ago...

14. Jun 10, 2010

### Ivan Seeking

Staff Emeritus
Tell me about it. From my MG Midget

15. Jun 12, 2010

### SW VandeCarr

16. Jun 12, 2010

### Chi Meson

Not quite, Slick. One pound of force will make a pound of mass accelerate at 32.2 feet per second per second.

One needs to exert one poundal of force to accelerate one pound of mass at 1 foot per second per second.

And, of course, one poundal will accelerate one slug at 32 ft/s/s

17. Jun 12, 2010

### George Jones

Staff Emeritus

18. Jun 12, 2010

### mgb_phys

19. Jun 12, 2010

### mgb_phys

Except for speed limits, road signs, shopping and food and drink.

Screen sizes and dangly bits are still quoted in inches however

20. Jun 12, 2010

### Phrak

Metric units are goofy; base 10. How goofy is that? And what's with the dozen metric wrenches to replace 7 American Standard wrenches? Don't know? American standard is based upon the reasonable binary system, 1/8, 3/4, etc, rather than the courser decimal system.