Compac Metric P-Line Test Indicator

Manufacturing resumed in 2023

With a sigh of relief, TESA of Switzerland has resumed manufacturing the popular and excellent quality test indicators known—since the 1960s—by the name Compac. We are not yet convinced that changing the name to P-Line was the best decision, however.

For the moment, only metric models are available and this includes horizontal, vertical, and parallel styles. We will be adding new ordering information to this page as it becomes available. In the meanwhile, you are welcome to send us an inquiry and we'll do everything we can to get these gages to you.

Compac P-Line test indicator photo courtesy of TESA, Switzerland.

What's wrong with this picture?
(photo courtesy of the manufacturer, TESA Switzerland)

New dials! The COMPAC name has been removed but the Compac model number is shown at the top under the somewhat perplexing "P-Line" logo. The Swiss manufacturer's name TESA is shown at the bottom. The black and white outer ring is a new innovation. Otherwise, everything stays the same.
Compac Metric Standard Models Series 210
Compac metrci perpendicular models series 220
Compac Graduations Range Dial Ø Point Length P-Line Model US$
213 0.01 mm 1.5 mm 27 mm 18 mm 01810400 inquire
213G 0.01 mm 1.5 mm 40 mm 18 mm 01810401 inquire
212L 0.01 mm 3 mm 27 mm 36 mm 01810402 inquire
212GL 0.01 mm 3 mm 40 mm 36 mm 01810403 inquire
215 0.002 mm 0.6 mm 27 mm 18 mm 01810404 inquire
215G 0.002 mm 0.6 mm 40 mm 18 mm 01810405 inquire
215GL 0.002 mm 1.2 mm 40 mm 36 mm 01810406 inquire
216G 0.001 mm 0.6 mm 40 mm 18 mm 01810407 inquire
Copac metric parallel models series 230

Important calibration information

Compac models are designed to permit a true reading when the angle between the stylus and the reference surface is 0° (ie., they are parallel).

Since the dial test indicator is used as a comparator, the angle can usually be set to remain at 0° for all comparisons. However, when the indicator is run through its range while attempting direct readings or for calibration, this angle will of necessity change, introducing the cosine error.

In the rare cases when measurement is required with the stylus at an angle other than 0° with respect to the reference surface the readings should be corrected. Refer to
calibration instructions for details.

While Compac test indicators are accurate ± 1 graduation when used as a comparator, they have total allowable deviations over their entire range as follows:

Contact Point Length

It is imperative that the correct length of contact point be used with dial test indicators. Test indicators rely on leverage ratios to amplify the readings. Changing the length of the contact point will alter the ratio and result in incorrect readings. The common problem of incremental errors (ie, the readings gradually get worse from one revolution to the next) is most likely due to the installation of the wrong length point.

Most manufacturers specify the proper point length in their catalogs. It is not always clear, however, how the over-all length of the point is measured.

Compac contact points should be measured from the center of the carbide ball to the far end of the threads.

Some end-users purposely install extra-long contact points because their application requires it. If the contact point is exactly twice the length, then the readings on the dial will be doubled. Most 0,002 mm Compac indicators can be fitted with a long point which will make the graduations read 0,004 mm

Most manufacturers make indicators designed for use with long contact points. Compac test indicators have the letter designation "L" as a component of their model numbers.

Contact points can have a variety of ball diameters typically ranging from 1 mm to 3 mm and are available in carbide or ruby (special order). It is highly recommended that contact points fitted with carbide balls be used, especially for 0,002 mm indicators. The size of the ball diameter has no effect on the indicator's accuracy.

To find the ordering number for contact points refer to our
contact points list.

Compac Indicator Repair

Compac and P-Line spare parts are available, in stock, and with our experience since 1959, repairs can effectively be made on any of these test indicators.

Professional repairs:
see details

Additionally, we have now printed a Compac
repair manual which can be found in book form at Amazon. If you want to give it a try yourself. Warning! It isn't easy.


Q: I am interested in your metric Compac 213G dial test indicator. Would you please answer these questions about it? Is the crystal (glass) made of mineral glass or plastic? Is the bezel made of metal or plastic? What country are parts made in and where did the final assembly take place?

  • The crystal is made of plastic although the type of plastic is proprietary information according to the manufacturer. The bezel is metal. The parts are made in Switzerland and the indicators are assembled in the factory in Renens, Switzerland, to the best of our knowledge.

Other questions? Feel free to ask.

The "other" Swiss indicator still made in Switzerland.

Long Island Indicator Service
Long Island Indicator Service was founded in 1960. We provide professional repair service for precision measuring tools and gages with an emphasis on Swiss made test indicators, dial indicators, dial calipers and micrometers. We are pleased to be a recognized service partner for Brown & Sharpe.

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