A spring scale is a type of measuring device
that tells you how heavy an object is that is hung
from the spring. For example, if you could find a
large enough spring scale and hang from the spring
(without breaking the spring!), then you could
find out your weight, just like on a balance scale
at the doctor's office.
On all spring scales, the longer lines indicate
the larger (heavier) unit of measurement. For the
example of the large spring scale that you can
hang from, the dark, long lines could give pounds.
The smaller lines are always a smaller unit of
measurement. For the above example, the small
lines could indicate ounces. If so, then there
would be 16 small lines between each large line,
because there are 16 ounces in a pound. The
smaller lines could also be in units of "1/4
pound", which would mean there would be 4 lines
between each long line.
To figure out the units for your particular
spring scale, you can carefully look at the units
that are listed next to the numbers. The larger
(heavier) unit will be the long line, and the
smaller (lighter) unit will be the shorter line.
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