A centimeter is a metric measurement of length while an inch is a measurement of length in the United States customary units. While some rulers are specifically for either type of measurement, anyone can convert from one measurement to another by using a simple conversion factor: 1 inch is equivalent to 2.54 centimeters and 1 centimeter is equivalent to 0.39 inches.
Things You'll Need
Measure your item using the ruler. Write down the number of inches, including the fractional value if it is between two full inches.
Convert the fractional value to decimals by dividing the top number by the bottom number. Add this to your inches value to create your total number of inches.
Multiply your value in inches by 2.54 to convert it to centimeters. The resulting value is your measurement in centimeters.
Tips & Warnings
- If you have a centimeter rule, follow the same instructions as the inches ruler, but multiply the final number in Step 3 by 0.39 to convert to inches. This number is approximate as the entire conversion factor is actually 0.3937008.
- If math is not your strong suit, several online calculators can help you convert from inches to centimeters and vice versa. See the links in the Resources section.
- Photo Credit steel ruler image by dwags from Fotolia.com
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