What Are Ball Plug Gages?

Ball plug gages by Monroe Engineering

Ball plug gages are commonly used with many industrial machines. You can find them on lathes, milling machines, computer-numerical controlled (CNC) machines and more. As shown in the adjacent photo, ball plug gages feature a relatively simple. They essentially consist of a long rod with a single ball connected at each end. What are ball plug gages exactly, and how do they work?

Overview of Ball Plug Gages

A ball plug gauge is a measuring device for industrial machines. Industrial machines, of course, require specific measurements. Whether you’re using a machine for cutting, molding or any other common manufacturing process, you’ll typically need to adjust the machine with the correct measurements. With a ball plug gage, you can take these measurements. Ball plug gages come in many different types, but they all serve the same purpose of providing measurements. You can use a ball plug gage to adjust an industrial machine so that it’s accurate for your intended application.

How Ball Plug Gages Work

Ball plug gages work using a simple method of operation. You can insert one of the ends of a ball plug gage into an industrial machine. The balls on a ball plug gage are designed in specific measurements. Therefore, you can use them to determine whether an indistural machine needs adjusting, assuming the size of the balls matches that of your intended application. Just insert one of the ends into the industrial machine, and if it doesn’t fit, you can proceed with the necessary adjustments.

Tips on Choosing Ball Plug Gages

When choosing ball plug gages, there are a few things you should know. First and foremost, ball plug gages can be either “go” or “no go.” They both consist of a similar design. The difference is that “go” ball plug gages move freely when inserted into an industrial machine, whereas “no go” ball plug gages stick when inserted into an industrial machine.

Of course, you should choose ball plug gages in the correct size. After all, they are used for taking measurements. You’ll need to determine the size of your machining-related application, after which you can choose ball plug gages in the correct size. When ordering ball plug gages from Monroe Engineering, you can choose from over 4,500 sizes.

Something else to consider when choosing ball plug gages is the material from which it’s made. Polished tungsten carbide has become a popular choice of material for ball plug gages. Consisting of tungsten and carbon, it’s incredibly strong and resistant to both hot and cold temperatures.