Scale examples

The word scale can have three forms of use, although at some point they all have to do with the same thing.

In mathematics

scale is the ordered sequence of a set of terms of the same characteristic. It is represented by a straight line divided into equal parts, in which each segment of that line symbolizes a unit.

It is common to use these lines in mathematics , since with it some of the results of operations or processes that give rise to the results can be explained.

As a drawing tool

Scale can also be the drawing tool for illustrating large items, but in smaller versions.

For example, if you want to draw 10km of terrain on a sheet of paper , perhaps the tool will establish that 1cm is equivalent to a real 10km, so you will know that every time you draw a 1cm line you will be representing a real 10km of terrain.

Another example is, a scale that is written “1: 400” can mean that 1cm of scale drawing equals 400cm in the original.

The difference between using a scale ruler and a standard ruler (the one we use at school to make lines or draw geometric figures) is that the former represents the object or distances in question on paper without neglecting its original dimensions, that is, by measuring the scaled version you will know what its real dimensions are, since it is only a representation, not a deformation of the drawn object.

For this type of scale there are three groups: natural, reduction and enlargement . The last two are obvious, but the first means that the represented object matches in dimensions with its real version.

In physics

The scale works as a guide in measuring instruments that allows us to classify magnitudes. For example, earthquakes have their own scale ( Richter and Mercalli ) that helps to know the magnitude of an earthquake.


Especially in the field of engineering, drawings or scale representations are very helpful when developing projects , since you can have a first tangible version of what is going to be built, or you can handle a construction already existing to develop ideas or modifications to the project.

This graphical representation is also important for dimensioning measurable events or situations, such as temperature ranges, earthquake data, and more.

Scale examples

  • Natural : 1: 1.
  • Reduction : 1:50, 1: 500000, 1: 250000
  • Magnification : 1000: 10, 20: 1, 100: 1

Other common examples:

  • Musical .
  • Glasgow coma (alertness in people).
  • Notes (used in educational systems).

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