forestry and the metric system

J.-Robert Thibault j-robert.thibault at
Thu Jun 25 13:41:36 EST 1998

In article <359277A4.21E009 at>, Mike Hagen <mhagen at> wrote:

> Units of measure need to have a tie to the people using them. With
> calculators readily available there should be no need for everyone to
> use the same system. It's a complex world, why simplify?
>   Liters seem to go with wine. Grams with aspirin.  Meters or feet
> work equally well for daily use. However adjusting a traverse by hand
> in metric isn't as easy as it is in english. For my survey program
> it's a snap. Celsius degrees are too big... Swimming temperatures (F)
> are in the 80s and up, not that I want to be poached like an egg. For
> me, plain "Board feet" don't mean that much but MBF does. MBF/acre is
> a usable number. MBF or whatever/hectare is too big, way too many
> truckloads, which usually are in the 3MBF/load size. Timber fallers
> here are also called "bushelers". Figure that one out! Tons are easy.
> Pulpwood goes by the ton. Metric tons are very close, just 200 lbs
> off. Cubic measure? Cubic meters are fairly near yds3 but still off
> from cunits (100ft3), which while hard to visualize are really useful
> for conversions in a spreadsheet. Metric degrees? I've done 'em but
> don't even want to think about it.
> Good topic.
> Al Stangenberger wrote:
> > 
> > On Wed, 24 Jun 1998 21:13:32 -0400, Joseph Zorzin
> > <redoak at> wrote:
> > 
> > >And ... let's see, where else do we need to go modern with metric?
> > >Hectares instead of acres?
> > >
> > 
> > Since many legal property boundaries are already fixed, does
> > converting the measurements to metric really make sense?  All you
> > would do is to translate some possibly unwieldy English measurements
> > into their metric equivalents which are probably even more  unwieldy.
> > 
> > For example, a section is 80 chains on a side.  Does measuring the
> > same property in meters (1609 meters per side if my arithmetic is
> > correct) really simplify things?


Please take a look at

This is mostly in French but numbers are numbers!!!


Faculty of Forestry and Geomatic,
Department of Wood and Forest sciences,
University Laval, City of Ste-Foy, 
Province of Quebec, Canada,    G1K 7P4

Internet:  J-Robert.Thibault at 
Tel.: (418) 656-2131  ext. 5927
FAX.: (418) 656-3177                     

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