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Published

No
in January 17th,
2011
Is Comments
it necessary
that
a

basic dimension should
always be from a datum feature in a case where
three datums are formed by a surface of a cube
and there are two blind holes in this surface? There
2Published
Comments
2nd, 2010
Q
– two
If in
a February
basic holes
dimension
does
notsurface
show a specific tolerance what tolerance should be
are
other
on the
other
applied?
perpendicular to the datum surface.
Elton
Hughes
I indicate
the first surface as datum A and the two

Question About Basic Dimensions

Question about a basic dimension without a
specific
tolerance
blind
holes on that
surface as B and C,
—————————————————————————————————————————
respectively.
When dimensioning the other two
———————
holes that are on the face perpendicular to datum A
A – Basic dimensions by nature are a theoretically exact value; however, the feature(s) of a
(other side of cube), I gave position tolerance w.r.t. A B C. I indicate the location of the hole
part they define as ideal or exact do need to have tolerances to permit acceptable levels of
from the edges as basic.
imperfection during manufacturing.
Since those edges are not datums, only the one edge that is common between the datum
When a feature is defined with basic dimensions, the tolerance for that feature must be
surface and the said surface on which these holes are, is a datum surface edge. The other
expressed through a geometric tolerance. Most often, the geometric tolerance is indicated
edge (which is a perpendicular edge) is not a datum, but to show a theoretically correct
directly to the feature or feature of size on the face of the drawing; however, some
dimension, I have shown it as basic, then I have a feature control frame associated with this
companies include a general geometrical tolerance (such as a position tolerance or profile of
basic dimension. Is that correct?
a surface tolerance) in the drawing’s general notes. This can be an effective tool when the
_____________________________________________________________________
note is carefully written.

Reply:
Drawings based on ISO standards frequently use a class of general geometrical tolerances
standardized
ISO 2768-2
The
three helps
classes
identified
throughtothe
use of the
Thanks
for theinexample
and :1989.
graphic.
It really
to are
have
an application
discuss.
upper case letters H, K, or L after the ISO 2768 indication on the drawing. You would need a
The
the datum
as the origin
of all basic
dimensions.
copyASME
of the standard
standard sets
to interpret
the amount
of tolerance
available.
ETI’s Fundamentals of Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing textbook illustrates this
If
you are absolutely
certain
geometrical
tolerance
hasmay
not been
applied
to the basic
especially
well in Figure
5-10that
on apg.
124. A basic
dimension
be shown
between
two
dimension
(check
all
drawing
views),
then
the
drawing
must
be
considered
as
incomplete.
non-datum features if there are additional basic dimensions that relate it to the datum
Without
a tolerance,
selecting
manufacturing process for the considered feature is
reference
frame (chained
basica dimensions).
impossible to do with any amount of certainty, and there is no acceptance criteria to compare
What
you want to
using
a basicprocess.
dimension that has no relationship to a datum
measurements
to avoid
duringisthe
inspection
reference frame. This is often termed a “floating basic.” Without the ability to relate to a
Thanks
for writing,
datum reference
frame, these floating basics are immeasurable and cannot be accurately
analyzed
in a tolerance stack-up.
Alex
In your example, Datum A is the primary datum and, as used in the position
tolerance, establishes the orientation of the tolerance zone (parallel to datum A). The basic
dimension of 10 from datum A established the location of the tolerance zone from datum
plane A.
So what else is required? We need to know the horizontal location (left and right variations)
of the holes and some additional orientation requirements, because the holes could
theoretically spin on the plane of A. Datum references B and C could define that for us, but
we don’t know where the holes are from B. The basic dimension of 10 is related to a nondatum feature (this makes it a floating basic).
This drawing will require a section view to show and dimension the relationship between the
two pairs of holes. This dimension must be a basic dimension and will allow us to remove the
horizontal basic 10.
Michael Adcock
ASME GDTP Senior Level
Dimensional Engineering Mentor

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