stanley fat max tape measure
Photo: Francesco Mosto
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Tape Measure (for small distances)

Best for: General measuring.

Look for: 25-foot or longer tape that's at least 1 inch wide so it can extend without bending, and/or a narrow 10-foot tape, which fits easily in a pocket; fractions and feet clearly marked; 16-inch intervals (stud centers) noted in color or bold type.

Shown: Stanley FatMax 25-foot tape measure; about $20;
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