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What is this? Something to do with hardness?

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Mike Donnerstag23/02/2021 16:48:50
210 forum posts
46 photos

I acquired this metal block many years ago. It appears to be etched and comes with its own wooden box. Can anyone tell me what it is used for?

Many thanks,


s-l1600 (1).jpg

Michael Gilligan23/02/2021 16:52:46
20070 forum posts
1040 photos

Your starter, for 10




... and a useful Wikipedia page :

Edited By Michael Gilligan on 23/02/2021 17:10:36

Mike Donnerstag23/02/2021 16:56:45
210 forum posts
46 photos

Thanks Michael.

Perhaps a better question would have been: Is it worth anything to anyone or should I scrap it?


Nigel Graham 223/02/2021 16:59:20
2026 forum posts
28 photos

I've never seen such a thing previously but you could be right, judging by the faint words along the front. There is a hardness-test technique based on indentation made by a hared steel ball, so this may be part of such a hardness-testing kit, but I am foxed by the disposition of the hollows.

Might have been for some specific trade.

Have you tried investigating the company itself - Avery Denison? (Probably long gone but worth a try.)

David Jupp23/02/2021 17:03:49
822 forum posts
17 photos

It's a calibration standard for the Brinell hardness test. Used to verify that the test device / microscope / operator are giving sensible results.

The ID of the standard, and the square used will be recorded in the calibration log.

noel shelley23/02/2021 17:06:19
1281 forum posts
21 photos

The part number could be RS. A hardness tester where each square is a test ?

Next question ? Noel

Michael Gilligan23/02/2021 17:29:23
20070 forum posts
1040 photos

Notes available from NPL : **LINK**


SillyOldDuffer23/02/2021 18:49:57
8487 forum posts
1890 photos

My guess is the plate was used to check a hardness testing machine is delivering the right whack and the ball isn't damaged. It tests the test machine, which is how I read David Jupp's answer.

The plate would have started blank and then been dinged periodically to confirm the test machine is in good order. The dents should be identical, but will gradually deteriorate as the machine ages. The plate is evidence of how consistent the machine is. I suspect it's naughty to put more than one ding per square because a too close dent might effect the local hardness.

If the plate was made to confirm a hardness tester was performing to standard, then the plate was also made to a standard. Expensive when new, I suggest this one is used up and useless.

Could be completely wrong!


Grindstone Cowboy23/02/2021 18:54:20
854 forum posts
64 photos

Could you turn it over and use it as something flattish to stick wet and dry on? Thus saving your surface plate the indignity.


old mart23/02/2021 18:56:24
3720 forum posts
233 photos
Posted by David Jupp on 23/02/2021 17:03:49:

It's a calibration standard for the Brinell hardness test. Used to verify that the test device / microscope / operator are giving sensible results.

The ID of the standard, and the square used will be recorded in the calibration log.

It has BRINELL HARDNESS on the bottom.

Howard Lewis23/02/2021 20:09:46
6013 forum posts
14 photos

It would probably been part of the kit supplied with an Avery Denison Hardness Test Machine. And somewhere along the line, they become separated.


Bazyle23/02/2021 20:15:58
6295 forum posts
222 photos

Intergallactic multidimensional dominos.

Anyone watching 'Fringe' will know it came from the parallel earth in exchange for a box of ballpoint pens.

Hollowpoint23/02/2021 20:26:46
464 forum posts
56 photos

Predecessor to swiss cheese?

Seriously though, don't scrap it! Its a nice looking thing in its own right.

Jon Lawes23/02/2021 20:41:32
876 forum posts

Someone might be looking for one of those. Whack it on eBay with a sensible reserve and someone somewhere might be very glad to have it.

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