Need to find your length in centimetres or your length in inches? Quickly convert length from feet/inches to centimetres using the length converter below.
- Enter Ratio
- The ratio calculator will calculate as you type
- A list of equivalent ratios will be produced
What is a Length converter?
A length converter is a simple calculator that converts imperial measurements to metric measurements and metric measurement to imperial measurements. This length converter will:
- Convert feet to metres and metres to feet.
- Convert feet to to centimetres and to centimetres to feet.
- Convert inches to feet and feet to inches.
- Convert inches to centimetres and inches to centimetres .
- Convert decimals imperial units to metric units.
Using the Length Converter
Converting length is simple with our length converter. You can also use the length converter to convert distances and lengths from imperial to metric and metric to imperial.
- Select Imperial to Metric or Metric to Imperial
- Enter the length measurement
- The length converter will provide a full length conversion as you type
Why do we need length converters?
Length converters remain an essential part of everyday life as we operate (in industry and on a personal level) in both imperial measurements and metric measurements, let's explore at why.
Imperial units or the imperial system (also known as British Imperial) was first defined in the British Weights and Measures Act of 1824. Used across the British Empire, imperial measurements touched almost all of the globe. So, a universal measurement unit, that's great right? Erm... not exactly. The challenge with the imperial system lays with its use of 12 as the common denominator. Although familiarity breeds confidence in a system, the actual mathematics involved in calculating divisions of 12 becomes complex as the number grows larger or enters into decimal or negative numbers. The same applies with fractions and decimal numbers.
Metric units are now an internationally recognized measurement unit. The Metric Measurement is a decimal system of measurement based on the mètre des Archives and the kilogramme des Archives introduced by France in 1799 though the metric system was used commonly in Roman times with military formations all based on 1,10,100, 1000 etc. Military precision through mathematic precision, little has changed in warfare strategy!
Metric Versus Imperial
Although our parents and grandparents may disagree, the Metric measurement system is much easier to use (practical and theoretical application) than imperial. The metric system has a common set of decimal-based prefixes (0, 10, 100, 100, 1000, 10,000 etc.) that make mathematical processing simple to complete, you can even use your fingers.
So, if metric measurement is so great, what do we still have imperial measurements and need length converters? Well, there are several good reasons and here are a few.
- Legacy: Household appliances, tool, fabrics, building equipment, the jogs they were made in, nuts, bolts, screws... everything was imperial! You can't simply change the size of everything overnight, the cost is huge. Some building materials are still in imperial sizes though they are few and far between now.
- People: Familiarity and education. People had to be trained to like the new system, let's not forget that an entire era had to learn both systems (to communicate with their parents/elder generation, to know if they were being overcharged on prices and to cope with the different text books and educational material).
- Experience: A lot of people had bad experiences with the change from imperial to metric, it changed weights, money, everything! The world became a strange place overnight. People never like change but, if we consider the UK as an example, the changes were for the worse on the whole. Yes the metric system is good but businesses, forced to change equipment etc, had long term increased operational costs. The impact was reduced sizes in goods as they took the opportunity created by confusion to recoup their operational costs. The consumer paid heavily for the conversion from imperial to metric. Prices were rounded up in the sellers favour.
So, with imperial sized equipment still part of our lives we must have length converters.
Did you know?
Centimetre is the correct spelling, not centimeter. The same applies to metre, it is not meter. The spellings were part of the internationally agreed unit of measurement act designed to allow simple exchange of information and trading.
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