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Recommendations For Triple-Beam Balance To Measure Glazes?

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Hi, I am in the market for a triple-beam balance to measure glaze chemicals. For those who use triple-beams, do you have any recommendations? Are there any features that I should definitely look for? I have seen some advertised with a "tare bar", but the balances I remember from school had a screw underneath the pan to tare the balance to zero, so I'm not sure how the"tare bar" works or what advantage it provides.

 

Thanks!

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Thank you both! Is there a particular model you recommend? I went to the Ohaus website, but was a little confused by the bells and whistles.

 

Marcia, I'm so sorry someone stole your scale!

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Thanks, Neil. I thought they come with a little knob underneath the pan for taring. Is the tare bar different? Also, I thought digital scales weren't as accurate. Is there one you recommend?

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Ah, I see. That does sound useful.

 

10,000g batches are beyond me. I'm still learning about glaze chemistry and mostly doing glaze tests right now. Maybe one day I will get up to that quantity!  :D

 

Thanks again

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I have a triple beam but rarely use it . I use my digital scale every week

You can pick up a 5,000 gram scale on amazon for under $40 that tares off any container and is sooooo much faster than the triple beam

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Hmm, I am intrigued by popularity of digital scales. I had learned that they weren't as accurate as mechanical scales (which are accurate to 0.1g). But I guess that is not so anymore? I ask because I am still testing glazes, so with small batches I feel more comfortable with the extra precision. Also, can digital scales be calibrated like a mechanical scale? 

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I own a pricey O'Haus digital scale as well-its the 5000 gram one. My amazon one works just as well. If you are only making tiny batches of stuff say under 500 grams get the triple beam.

I think they are almost obsolete now at least for me-to slow.

This one has worked well for me

https://www.amazon.com/My-Weigh-7000-Gram-Stainless-Steel-Kitchen/dp/B000EVFC8K/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1481180382&sr=8-4&keywords=my+weigh

under 40$

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I got my 5000 gram Ohaus in 1970 and it has been with me ever since. The school's 30,000 gram O haus got stolen. I'd recommend getting the scope and counter weight plus the 500 and 1000 gram counter weights for larger volumes.

MArcia

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Guest JBaymore

You have to PICK your digital scale to get the accuracy.  Look at the accuracy figure on the specs........ plenty match the triple beam's plus or minus one tenth of a gram.

 

The place they get more pricey is when you want high CAPACITY along with high accuracy.  But if you are weighing a lot of material (high capacity) with it ... then even a plus or minus 1 gram error factor can be a small PERCENTAGE error.

 

Use a high capacity but larger error one for the big weighing stuff... and a high accuracy but low capacity one for small items.  Simple.

 

If you are doing mainly test size batches....... you can find 0.1 gram accuracy cheaply in a lower capacity scale.

 

Note: you do not need 0.01 grams accuracy.

 

best,

 

.............john

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if you really want an ohaus triple beam, try ebay or craigslist.  i got one there and it was inexpensive enough to add the additional two 1000 and 500 weights.  you can always adjust the precision by putting bbs into the holder under the pan.

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I prefer digital to beam because the digitals are so much easier to use (and store when not using). Generally speaking, digital scales now come in 3 varieties. 1) reasonably priced small capacity but very accurate, 2) reasonably priced large capacity but accurate to 1 gram (i.e., could be up to 1/2g more or less), or 3) expensive large capacity and accurate. For the less than the price of #3, you can buy both #1 and #2 and use the one that is most appropriate for what you are measuring.

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My big digital scale is only accurate to 10 grams when you get over 1000 grams, which is still plenty accurate for weighing out full buckets of glaze.

 

The thing I don't like about the little triple beams when weighing out large amounts is the action of the scale. You get no movement, then bam! it goes down. I just find that very annoying. I've got a very old, very large Ohaus triple beam that's about 32 inches long and weighs about 40 pounds, that can weigh 1100 grams without weights. The action on that one is wonderful. Nice slow movement. I almost never use it though. I've considered selling it but it's just too cool to part with.

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I changed to digital scale after my Ohaus broke, it was going to cost as much for a new one as it was to repair my old one.  Ohaus told me that the magnets in it had gone bad.  I love the digital scale, much faster to mix glazes especially test glazes.   Potter

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Hmm, I am intrigued by popularity of digital scales. I had learned that they weren't as accurate as mechanical scales (which are accurate to 0.1g). But I guess that is not so anymore? I ask because I am still testing glazes, so with small batches I feel more comfortable with the extra precision. Also, can digital scales be calibrated like a mechanical scale?

 

Digital scales are very accurate. I have a 300 gram one accurate to .01 grams. Got it off EBay for about $5 USD. This level of accuracy is useful when measuring out small quantities of very powerful (and usually very expensive) colouring oxides.

 

How do I know it is accurate? For a couple bucks more on EBay you can get a calibration weight to test the accuracy whenever you want. I do this regularly so I can verify that it is accurate.

 

I have found that after 3 years of hard use and banging around in my toolbox it has lost a few hundredths of a gram of accuracy. I can put up with that, but I got another one just in case it goes kaput.

 

Also, I have found that when weighing hot objects (eg, test bars right out of the kiln) it gets a bit flaky. These issues are minimal in any case.

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Like Curt, I've found digital scales great. The main one I use goes up to 3kg with an accuracy of 0.1g. I also tried one with a lower maximum weight that had a read out to 0.01 g for making small glaze test samples, but I found the actual accuracy was about 0.025g.

If you are messy like me, wrap it in a piece of clingfilm to keep it dry when you slosh water or glaze over it!

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