Commonly known as just a scriber, an engineers scriber tool is used to mark materials, like wood metals and plastics before they undergo machining. They can also be used with various hand tools and are used to mark out the areas to be measured or cut etc.

They are hardy for their size and are usually made from metals like aluminium and steel alloy with a tip made from tungsten carbide or another hard material like diamond.
They are useful in a wide range of applications and their pen like form means they are easily portable in belts, pockets and toolboxes.

What applications can a scriber be used in?

Mostly used by professional tradespeople or DIY enthusiasts, scribers can be used in a wide range of industries, from woodwork and carpentry, to machining and engineering, even domestic DIY.
Scriber tools work similarly to a pencil by creating a faint line via the tip when drawn across materials.

Why use a scriber?

Scribers offer precision lines due to them marking the surface by leaving a shallow scratch which is more difficult to erase than graphite or pen. This allows for precise marking of holes etc for more accurate results. Ink can also be added to enhance the marking line and they are much safer to use than bulkier tools like knives.

Types of scriber

Scribers are all very similar in function however, the main two types are:

Carpenter's scriber - Used for marking woodwork and softer materials.
Engineer's scriber - Features a harder, sharper edge for marking metals and hard materials such as steel.


What are the advantages of scribers?
The main advantage is precision. The line marked with a scriber is much more precise than if marked with a pen or graphite pencil and as a result they allow for better overall results in the accuracy of hole placement, cutting etc.

Do I need a scriber?
This all depends on the application. If you need to mark precisely for example screw holes etc in machinery, then an engineer's scriber would be well suited. However for more everyday domestic marking a scriber might be less useful due to the mark being difficult to remove one made.