Taking Weight with a Digital Pressure Gauge


A digital pressure gauge is a good way to measure weight

Weight measurements are taken with a digital pressure gauge all the time. For a standard PSI unit, all that’s needed is to convert pounds per square inch (psi) to pounds (lbs). The process is pretty simple; you'll end up with a multiplier that you will enter into the digital pressure gauge to give you a weight measurement.

Making the Conversion

First, you need to calculate the square inches of the effective area where the actual weight will be applied. In industry, this is often inside a hydraulic cylinder. You'll need to account for the system as a whole (number of pistons, etc) - so it involves a little math. In the simplest environment, this is the area of a single piston inside a cylinder. The formula for this is area = pie X by the radius² (A=πR2).

Next, you need to enter that number into your digital pressure gauge as a multiplier. All of our digital gauges allow you to do this inside the menu system.

Keep It Simple

You may need to do some extra conversions first, depending on your situation. For example, you can convert to tons or to kgs. In any case, stick to square inches to start just to avoid complex conversions. Once you have a lbs multiplier you can convert to other units of measure. When you're done with all your convertifying, you'll then enter your that multiplier into the digital pressure gauge.

How It Works For Our Customer

A good example of this is our customer in the Inland Empire of Southern California. There, fresh hay bales are weighed as they are loaded onto flatbed trucks by a forklift. Each hay bale’s weight is calculated and displayed by our PG5 digital pressure gauge mounted on the forklift.

The weight is important. Flatbed trucks are only allowed to carry so much weight - regulated by the physical limitations of the flatbed and truck engine, and the state's Department Of Transportation (DOT). Mounting the digital pressure gauge directly to the forklift streamlines the weighing process and speeds up the loading.

Two functions on our digital pressure gauges are critical for the success of this endeavor:


The Tare function lets the gauge operator to zero out a pre-existing weight. In this case, the weight of the forks of the forklift has to be subtracted for an accurate measurement. You'll see this very same feature on most scales.

Custom Units of Measure

When you buy APG, your digital pressure gauge will have a standard unit of measure - most likely PSI. Then there are several other units of measure that you can select in the menu system without having to do any conversions. Finally, there are custom units of measure.

This function allows you to put a custom multiplier in to convert your standard unit of measure to something else. As explained above, to convert PSI to LBS, you calculate the effective area where force (or weight) is applied.

The Result

Our customer using the PG5 digital pressure gauge to weigh hay bales is very happy with the accuracy and performance of the gauge. He saves a lot of time loading bales, and didn't have to buy a large industrial scale just to take a weight measurement that would ultimately slow him down. His digital pressure gauge cost him a few hundred dollars instead of thousands.

We can help you do the math and configure your digital pressure gauge for taking weight measurements. Contact us with any questions, or to learn more about our PG series of digital gauges.

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