Frequently Asked Questions
What is the accuracy of a ProScale measuring system?
The accuracy of the core product (scale + encoder) depends on the ProScale Model. This accuracy is calculated at 20ºC (68ºF). ProScale has a thermal coefficient of 25ppm/ºC. Complete ProScale Product Specifications are in each product's User Manual.
How do I get the Readout into "programming mode"? (The following works for readouts made since 2008.)
1. Press and hold the UNITS key.
2. Press and quickly release the DATUM key.
3. The readout will show PG ON, then the first parameter number. (If the readout does not enter programming menu, the menu is locked out by a jumper on the circuit board inside readout. Consult User Manual for your unit or contact factory for assistance.
4. Release the UNITS key. After a moment, the value for the first parameter will display.
5. Press the UNITS key to advance through the parameters.
6. Press the PLUS or MINUS keys to adjust a parameter's value. Press the DATUM key to default a parameter's value.
7. Repeat steps 1-2 to exit the parameter menu.
What materials can ProScale be used to measure?
ProScale can be used to measure any rigid or semi-rigid product - where liquids will not contact the digital scale (in most cases, installing the scale upside down solves this problem).
Why is ProScale better than shaft encoders?
When mounted properly, ProScale only changes its reading when the machine actually moves, instead of when a shaft begins to turn. This removes any error due to backlash in shafts.
Why is ProScale better than optical measuring systems?
Unlike optical measurement systems, the accuracy of capacitive and inductive measuring systems are not affected by sawdust or other non-conductive contaminants. Additionally, power consumption is MUCH less than optical measurement systems, which enables ProScale to operate on a single battery for many months (and makes installation easy). Also, ProScale is a solid-state electronic device, so there's very little to wear out. The encoder and scale are designed to withstand shop dirt, dust, and other airborne contaminants, and the controls are sealed with a protective cover for long life.
Why is ProScale better than magnetic measuring systems?
Unlike magnetic measurement systems, there is never a gap to set or worry about. the ProScale system uses a 'captive' encoder to always maintain proper distance between the encoder and the scale.
ProScale's power consumption is much less than magnetic measurement systems, allowing long term use with standard battery power (and making installation and maintenance easier).
Accuracy does not degrade with variation of input voltage.
ProScale can be used next to motors, magnets, and high voltage wiring without errors in accuracy or repeatability.
How long can ProScale measure?
Standard ProScales have a maximum measuring range of 0 to 284 inches in a single length (custom systems can be much longer).
If you work in fractions, the ProScale readout has a maximum display range of +/-399 63/64 inches.
If you work in inches (3 decimal places), the ProScale readout has a maximum display range of +/-999.999 inches. (Newer readouts will reduce number of decimal places to range up, allowing +/- 9999.99 inches or +/- 99999.9 inches.)
If you work in millimeters (2 decimal places), the ProScale readout has a maximum display range of +/-9999.99mm. (Newer readouts will reduce number of decimal places to range up, allowing +/- 99999.9 mm.)
ProScale can be custom built to measure longer ranges; contact us with details of your application.
What is the power source for ProScale measuring devices?
Most ProScale measuring devices are powered by the Digital Readout. Most of our readouts use (1) CR123 lithium battery. Some of our digital readout models are powered by 12-24VDC.
Will ProScale lose its position when turned off or when power is removed?
ProScales products built with ABSOLUTE technology will not lose their position when turned off or when power is removed. (This includes Model 150 and Model 250, plus any products incorporating these systems.)
ProScale products built with INCREMENTAL technology will not lose their position when the READOUT is turned off, but could possibly lose their position if power is removed. (This includes Models 190, 290, 390 and 590, plus any products built using this technology.)
Can ProScale communicate with computers? What is the protocol?
ProScale is compatible with computers using several different protocols. Our SPC equipped readouts output Mitutoyo Digimatic™ signal. This signal can be converted to RS232, RS485, RS422, or an analog 0-5, or 0-10VDC signal using our interface products. Many of our digital readouts have built-in converters as well. Data may also be transmitted wirelessly using ProRF SPC or ProRF Encoder wireless transmitters.
What is the maximum speed that ProScale can be moved?
This varies by the ProScale model and how it is built:
- Standard Absolute technology Encoders have a slew rate of 14 inches per second. (These are standard on Models 150 and 250)
- Hi-Speed Absolute technology Encoders have a slew rate of 24 inches per second. (These are standard on ProTable products made prior to 2014.)
- Standard Inductive Series II Incremental encoders have a slew rate of 80 inches per second. (Includes Models 190, 290, 390, 590, and all standard QC products made since 2014.)
Can ProScale measuring devices be used outdoors?
ProScales were designed to be used indoors where the temperature is between 0 - 51ºC (32 - 120ºF). Our liquid crystal displays will not operate well outside these temperatures. Our LED display (requires 12-24VDC power connection) will operate in colder temperatures. Absolute technology ProScales (Models 150, 250) do not operate in wet environments, however the encoder and scale are designed to withstand shop dirt, dust, and other non-conductive contaminants. Incremental technology ProScales (Models 190, 290, 390, 590) will operate in light splash environments, and the encoder and scale are designed to withstand shop dirt, dust, and all other airborne contaminants.
Consideration should also be given to the effects on accuracy - for any device - at extreme temperatures. (Our GPE readout has CTE monitoring and correction, and can be used for human-tolerable temperature ranges.)
How do I retrofit my product with ProScale measuring devices?
It's possible to retrofit almost any product with ProScale. ProScale operates on a simple principle: one part of a product moves, and other part is stationary. Simply match the stationary and moving parts of your product to the stationary and moving parts of a ProScale, and an installation can be completed. We make several engineered retrofit kits for popular woodworking and metalworking machinery.
Do you sell SPC (Statistical Process Control) software?
No. There are numerous programs and methodologies for implementing SPC. We only provide the data stream.
Can I shorten a ProScale scale that I already have?
Any scale we manufacture can be shortened without causing the system to fail or to lose accuracy. Follow the instructions here.
Is NIST calibration available?
We manufacture and test all of our measuring devices using NIST traceable gage bars. A calibration chart can be generated (using NIST traceable gage bars) for an additional fee. This service is available anytime (shipping charges to and from Accurate Technology apply).
I have a very old ProScale with worn out brass (copper) battery clips. How can I get more of these?
We stopped using the brass type clips in our production in 2012, and it was completely phased out by early 2014. We no longer have stock of the battery clips, but we do still offer a trade-up program. You can take a 25% discount for a new ProScale readout by trading in your old model. (Valid for any product 20 years old or less.)
My Absolute Series scale has cracks in it that are strange looking and repeat every 430mm. Is this normal?
Yes, there should be a crack (we call it a splice) in the scale every 430mm. This is on purpose, and relates to our manufacturing process. If your system is not working correctly at the splice:
1. Replace the battery in your digital readout first.
2. Ensure the encoder is put on the scale correctly (the arrow must point towards the Black End of the Scale).
3. Access the programming menu of your readout and be sure parameter Pr13 is set to a 1 value.
4. Clean out any conductive debris that is trapped in the splice.