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Fahrenheit vs Celsius

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Nigelblt
383758.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:38 am Reply with quote

Why in the UK do we use Fahrenheit for hot days and Celsius for cold? I would rarely say the temperature is 30. For me this would either be -1, if it was a cold day or 86 on a hot day.

 
Lumpo31
383760.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:44 am Reply with quote

Why do we travel in miles, yet weigh in kilograms?

 
Southpaw
383770.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:56 am Reply with quote

Speak for yourself. I never have and never will use Fahrenheit. It's a generation thing, methinks.

As for weighing in kilograms, that depends what your weighing. I refer to my own weight in stone, buy meat by the pound but other things in grams.

Generally I use imperial measurements to describe longer distances ('300 yards that way') and metric for small measurements ('I need a 50mm jubilee clip').

 
itch
383771.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 5:58 am Reply with quote

I don't know the real answer but my guess is that when they show the weather on TV it's to make it sound hotter or colder than it actually is. 80F sounds hotter than 20 odd Celsius (I don't actually know the conversion rate but you get my point), by the same token it's a bit more scary to say it's gonna be -40F, oh my god hide your kids it's gonna be a terrible winter, when actually it's about freezing on the celsius gauge. Did that make any sense? Probably not........

 
Nigelblt
383774.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 6:04 am Reply with quote

itch wrote:
it's a bit more scary to say it's gonna be -40F


Funny you should choose -40 as that's the temperature both scales coincide - was it deliberate?

Still pretty cold either way.

 
itch
383816.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:01 am Reply with quote

Nope, I know hee haw about temperature scales, 'twas just an example! What do you mean by coincide? Are -40C and -40F the same?

 
jonp
383821.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:04 am Reply with quote

itch wrote:
Nope, I know hee haw about temperature scales, 'twas just an example! What do you mean by coincide? Are -40C and -40F the same?
Yep. Coincidentally the freezing point of mercury.

 
Tas
383825.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:14 am Reply with quote

I've never used Fahrenheit on a regular basis. Centigrade (or Celsius) all the way for me.

:-)

Tas

 
Efros
383826.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:15 am Reply with quote

also concidentally the coldest temperature I have experienced, on my deck a couple of years ago, we had -40F with wind behind it.

 
masterfroggy
383827.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:18 am Reply with quote

jonp wrote:
itch wrote:
Nope, I know hee haw about temperature scales, 'twas just an example! What do you mean by coincide? Are -40C and -40F the same?
Yep. Coincidentally the freezing point of mercury.
here is a question, is -38.72 degrees C the freezing point of mercury, or is it just the point where mercury stops being a liquid and becomes a solid.

 
Efros
383830.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:25 am Reply with quote

It's the temperature at which mercury undergoes a phase change. If more energy is added to the mercury then it is absorbed by the mercury until all of the mercury is liquid with no rise in temperature. If energy is being released by the mercury then all of the mercury will eventually become solid at which point, and only when the mercury is completely solid, the temperature of solid mercury will begin to drop. Latent heat.

 
suze
383837.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:42 am Reply with quote

Because mercury freezes at that temperature, mercury thermometers aren't much use in parts of the world where it gets very cold (much of Canada, for instance).

Ethanol thermometers are used instead - ethanol freezes at -114 Celsius, a temperature never recorded in nature.

 
Nigelblt
383839.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 7:54 am Reply with quote

A friend of mine worked in Alberta where it regularly dipped to -40. He told me diesel fuel would freeze and his car battery would lose its charge during the day while he was at work.

The company had a truck that would go round to restart cars at the end of the day.

 
scottydog
383861.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 8:27 am Reply with quote

I think it's great that we can work to different systems. Being into the outdoors means that I have to switch from miles to km, metres to feet, and sometimes yards are thrown in too. It is not unusual to read a climb description that quotes a rock climb as, say, 900m in length, over 14 pitches, with the crux at 35ft on pitch 3. It breeds a bit of good mental agility.

 
suze
383885.  Wed Jul 23, 2008 9:23 am Reply with quote

Diesel doesn't actually freeze, it just turns into a sort of gelatinous goo at low temperatures - but for sure, anyone with a diesel car needs to take care in a place such as Alberta. There's a fuel additive which gets around the issue.

Fortunately, the car I had when I worked in Alberta ran on gasoline. That doesn't freeze solid either, it turns into something of the texture of plasticine - but fortunately, it doesn't do so at normal winter temperatures, even in Alberta.

 

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