Category Archives: OG204

Information about the OG204 plastic-bodied Tooke Gauge

Sept 2015: new enhanced custom scopes

(This is the “short” version. For all the gory, miserable details, please see here:

I feel as if I keep making promises to you and then not delivering on the new enhanced microscopes. I expect that you may also feel as if I keep not delivering – and I know it’s difficult for you to keep waiting for the better scopes. You keep waiting, your business keeps going, and the current universal scopes, no matter how accurate (and they are: I test every single scope against certified NIST gage-blocks before shipping), are less-than-optimal because of the less-fine reticle.

(And I realize some of you may not be able to wait longer and must turn elsewhere for an inspection device: I am more sorry than I can express at putting you in the position of having waited so long and then still not (yet) getting a better scope in a Tooke Gage. I hope you can wait a little longer.)

The short(er) version:

In May, we (Micro-Metrics and the sourcing company managing this process for me) received samples of the final order of “completed” scopes: (we had required yet another/one last review-and-approval step before shipping the whole order). In short: both English and metric scopes were completely unacceptable (despite the prototypes having been approved)! (See what was wrong with both scopes.)

As of August: we have taken the following steps:

  • We pulled all 400 of the unusable metric scopes from the original factory.
  • We have found a new factory that promises working samples of the metric scopes within 30 days (from about 2 weeks ago). We are again requiring approved samples before proceeding.
  • If the new factory’s samples are approved, we will have the new factory do the remainder of the 400 metric scopes.
  • The original factory is “repairing” the 600 English-reticle scopes. The English reticles measure great: clear and accurate! However, the reticle and internal optics were not secured in the barrel during production. (Three of 20 samples were broken on receipt.)
  • (If the metric scopes work out), we will probably pull the English scopes as well and have the new factory finish them too.

Interested in the details on what was wrong with both scopes?

My commitment (has not changed):

The new enhanced microscopes HAVE to be right! There is no place in my world (or yours) for scopes that do not meet the quality and operational standards we (I and you, my customers and distributors) require. Micro-Metrics has always had a reputation for quality and accuracy: this is the fundamental basis for this company, and when I inherited Micro-Metrics in 2011, it became (and remains) the basis for all I do.

I am willing to invest time (and money) to get these scopes right; I am not willing sacrifice quality to get them sooner (or cheaper). Though it has taken an insane amount of time – until the scopes are RIGHT, they aren’t acceptable (and that, alas, means they aren’t available for you). Micro-Metrics and the sourcing company are committed to doing whatever it takes to make the new enhanced scopes right. Finding a reliable maker has turned out to be a lot harder than either of us imagined!

An aside:

My sourcing company president IS good and honorable and working hard on this project (and is nearly as frustrated as I am). This is not something he is doing wrong or not following up on. Most things I’ve turned my hand to have turned out good or better. This upgrade? It will turn out good, because I won’t be done until it is! The original factory did a great job (and was worth the large cost) of designing the custom scopes (a truly esoteric skill), but the actual manufacturing seems to present a challenge to them.

End aside

Once I get the new enhanced scopes, I will be offering a scope-swap program to replace the universal scopes with the enhanced scopes . ( I will be giving a (large) discount on the cost of the scope, and not charging any labor.) If you wish to be on the list of people who want to be notified when I have the new scopes, please email me ( Also, I will post an announcement on the company blog, just as soon as the new enhanced scopes arrive (and have been tested and accepted!).

green OG204

The other new program I will begin soon is a “body-transplant”: if you have an old metal or plastic gauge with the old-style scope you can have your gauge rebuilt (with the new metal body) using your current scope. (Please note: if your OG204 Tooke Gage has a green plastic body, I am still replacing those shells under warranty. Email me!)

Thank you for your patience during this oh-so-long process.

Update on the better scopes

final enhanced scope, photo from factory

STILL no good word on the new enhanced scopes: my sourcing co. guy is IN China (again)…

(All the way back in MAY {wince}…) The factory reported that they had ‘gotten the scopes all done and were sending examples for final approval before shipping and here were photos of them.’

I completely freaked out, because what they had built was missing the last step (which we had ‘fixed’ back in, like, October?). Thankfully, that fix is (apparently?) an easy one; they left off the metal cap on the bottom of the scopes. (The prototype without the ‘cap’ hangs up on the focusing screw – totally not acceptable!)

final incomplete enhanced scope

Accepted prototype
final incomplete enhanced scope

So, we’re trying to get the English scopes (re-)done and shipped; that will make customers who use English units very happy. (And me, well-nigh delirious!)

The enhanced metric scopes, when the examples arrived at the sourcing co., seem to have something fundamentally wrong (with the reticle? with the focal length? TBD): they’re not measuring correctly. This will further dismay customers who use metric units, as we still have to figure out WHY the metric reticle is not reading correctly, and then fix that problem!

Still, the minute I get the English scopes in my hands, I will make them available in new gauges, and begin the ‘swap program’ for folks who hate the current universal scopes (which are both metric units AND less-fine-measuring: 50 microns per hashmark; the enhanced ones will be 20 microns). ( Have I mentioned the I hate the universal ones?)

Some detail to whet appetites?

Since I am still awaiting word on the actual delivery date for the new scopes, I thought I’d post some info about the various types of reticles that are, and will be, “out there.”

The current universal scope
0.05mm per hashmark:
0.05mm = 50 microns = 0.00197″

the current universal reticle

The old-style English scope
0.001″ per hashmark:
0.001″ = 0.0254mm = 25.4 microns

the old-style English reticle

The old-style metric scope
0.005″ per hashmark:
0.005″ = 0.127 mm = 127 microns

the old-style metric reticle

The enhanced English scope
0.001″ per hashmark:
0.001″ = 0.0254mm = 25.4 microns

new enhanced English reticle

the English reticle drawing

The enhanced metric scope
No photo yet, because I have not gotten a prototype, but it should be pretty similar to the English photo above, since it’s made by the same company.
0.02mm per hashmark:
0.02mm = 20 microns = 0.000787″

new enhanced metric reticle

Glimpse of hope on the enhanced scopes?

24 May, i.e., Sunday of the alleged three-day weekend: remember when we were kids and got three-day weekends off and summers off too?

“The lenses are supposed to arrive next week.”

The sourcing company guy finally got an answer from China. How sound it is? I don’t know — back in mid-December, they said “mid-March” as if they meant it. End of March, they said, “shipping date is 27 April” as if they meant it. Now, nearly the end of May…

And, of course, this news is only the lens kits arriving AT the factory. However, the manufacturing itself shouldn’t take that long.

But the sourcing company guy (who has been working on this harder than it may seem!) is staying on it, and so am I.

Latest news on enhanced scopes

me, behind closed doors!

I am SO sorry to all-y’all waitin’ on the new scopes! I am also very frustrated, of course.

The “new” ship date of 27 April, of course, didn’t occur. My sourcing company guy was IN China then, and worked to chase down what the delay was. The company that makes the lens kits got a huge order, and so (understandably, if infuriatingly) pushed my little order (among a bunch of little orders) back, they said, by “18 days” but I have not been able to find out 18 days from when. The sourcing co. guy is trying to negotiate a ‘expedite fee,’ which he and I hope will succeed (without being too horrific).

He says he should know sometime (maybe? I hope?) in about 10 days (that was from the 11th). I am making sure everything I need is ready to go, the instant I get the new scopes… We have all been waiting (and waiting and waiting) for them: I WISH I could provide any sort of actual news … but this is all I have.

Many a slip twixt… well, it’s a delay anyway

Despite assurances that the new enhanced scopes would take “only” 60 to 90 days for manufacture and shipping, there has been a delay in getting the metric reticles. The new ship date has now been promised as 27 April. I’ve asked that the English-reticle scopes be shipped as soon as they are done, because at least those I could begin offering. No response to that request yet.

OG202 with enhanced scope

OG204 with enhanced scope

I am very sorry because I know how many folks are waiting for the new scopes (not the least of us: ME!). So far, it has been three years and one month since I began the process of getting new scopes designed and manufactured.

Some enhanced scope details

Still waiting for the delivery of the new enhanced microscopes. I thought folks might like to see the scale of the new reticles. (The new reticles are the main reason for the new scopes!)

As mentioned in my last entry: there will be two kinds of enhanced scope: a metric version and an English version. (The difference in size of the pix below comes from my less-than-stellar graphics skills. The two scopes are identical except for the reticle scale.).

The English-unit reticle

English-unit scale for enhanced scope

The metric-unit reticle

metric-unit scale for enhanced scope

Scope Swap Program info

Still finalizing the details for the swap program. I will be trying to contact everyone everywhere who has the universal scope in their gauge(s) to make sure they know about the enhanced scope offer; but please feel free to email me and make sure I reach you!

Special email address for the swap program:

Happy New Year, and great news!

I’ve finally placed the order for the new enhanced, custom-designed, custom-made microscopes for Tooke Gages! (These pictures show the final prototype.)
OG202 with enhanced scope
It’s been a long, long time since I began the process (back in April 2012!). However, the custom scopes had to be both perfect and affordable!

OG204 with enhanced scope

It’s going to be another 60-90 days or so before the scopes are actually manufactured, shipped, and in my hands, but from that point, there will be two types of scope (as there once were): scopes with a reticle marked in English units (with 1/10th-mil between hashmarks) and scopes with a reticle marked in metric units (0.02mm/20 µm per hashmark). (This compares to the 0.2-mils/50 microns between hashmarks in the Universal scope.)

To allow easier ordering, I will be using the following ‘part numbers’ to differentiate the type of gauge being ordered.

  • OG202 (Aluminum-bodied gauge with English reticle)
  • OG202M (Aluminum-bodied gauge with metric reticle)
  • OG204 (Plastic-bodied gauge with English reticle)
  • OG204M (Plastic-bodied gauge with metric reticle

enhanced scope

I am also “designing” a swap program, so those of you with the current Universal scope (marked in mm) can swap-out the Universal scope for one marked in English units, if you wish. Also, the enhanced metric scope has a finer reticle than the Universal scope, and that may be a consideration for folks using the Universal scope in its “native” (metric) units.
The three types of scope

If you have a very-old-style Tooke Gage, I also offer a rehab/upgrade program. I have done this for some owners of old Tooke Gages, replacing and upgrading various parts, and even the whole body, to create a ‘new’ Tooke Gage by re-using their original scope.

very old-style OG202

Changing the OG204 serial number location

As part of updating and upgrading the processes and products Micro-Metrics ‘has always used,’ I have started using a great machine that allows me to hammer the serial numbers into the plastic bodies of the OG204 Tooke Gages. I wanted a way to add the serial numbers that did not entail trying to line up individual stamps to get the serial numbers legible and looking nice.

Here’s the new gear: the jig, the numbering mechanism, and an OG204 in place.

NumberAll Stamps and Tool Co.
Made by the NumberAll Stamps and Tool Co.

Closer view of numbering mechanism. The best thing about the mechanism is that I can increment the serial number by one, merely by turning the wheel on the right! Numerals for the tens, hundreds, thousands, and ten-thousands (planning ahead!) are changed using a little wrench, but being able to change the ‘ones’ so quickly — and having the numbers ALWAYS lined up correctly — is great!

NumberAll Stamps and Tool Co.
The OG204 in the stamping jig

However, this great new system required moving the position of serial number because the shell body doesn’t fit into the jig in an orientation to place the number where it always went.

The original serial number placement:

NumberAll Stamps and Tool Co.

The new serial number placement:
NumberAll Stamps and Tool Co.

And, just to make the comparison: here’s where the serial number is on the OG202 metal-bodied Tooke Gage. This is the same place as always, but now that the bodies are anodized, I have the serial numbers laser-engraved.
NumberAll Stamps and Tool Co.

Coming soon: enhanced/upgraded microscopes!

It’s been a long difficult slog, but it looks as if Micro-Metrics will finally have the new enhanced microscopes for the Tooke Gages in the next several months! (I started locating scope designers and possible production facilities back in April 2012!) I was able to test the penultimate version a few months ago, but there was one (what I hope was the) final problem with the design:

My sourcing company and the factory say this can be easily remedied. I won’t approve production, however, until I have received and tested the actual, final, perfect prototype — these new scopes have to be beyond excellent! One of my Micro-Metrics customers has been trying out the prototype for the past few months (it works, it just hangs up on the focusing screw) and he says his guys are very happy with it because it’s clear and easy to read.

I am also having designed an enhanced version of the metric scope; rather than continuing the universal reticle (which has approximately 2mils between hashmarks), I working for a “finer” reticle, with at least a fineness equivalent to the new English scopes. I don’t have the final specs on the metric reticle yet, but I’m hoping it will be at least as fine (in microns) as the new English reticle is (in mils).

For those of you with the current universal scope in your gages, I will be offering a swap program if you wish to upgrade your scope to the new enhanced version. Details to come.

(And yes, the next upgrade I will be working towards after the new scopes is a camera adapter for the Tooke Gage!)