Help! I need to fix a measuring tape.

Help! I need to fix a measuring tape.

I borrowed a guy’s steel measuring tape made by Lufkin Rule Co. The tape pulls out of a round case, and there is a little fold-out handle on the side that can be used to reel the tape back in. One of my “assistants” ended up unreeling it all the way, and somehow the tape came loose from the reel inside the case. I can’t reel it back in now.

So … I’m looking for someone who can tell me how to repair it, which probably involves taking the case apart, but it’s certainly not obvious how it would come apart. My second choice would be another web site that deals in old tools where someone might be able to help. My third choice would be to buy him a new one, but I’d like to exhaust the first two choices first.

I have a similar 100’ tape in a black round housing.
As I recall, it had 3-4 screws to open up the case and no spring mechanism to rewind it.
If the one you are describing matches my description, it was simple to open up and reattach the tape. The metal loop had broken and I cut off the last inch of unmarked yellow tape and drilled a new hole to hook it up with.
I am still using my rebuilt tape 14 years later. Sorry I do not know the brand as I am not at home.

Best I could do,

Lufkin makes a gazillion and one different styles of tapes. The ones I can recall seeing were all held together with screws. It’s possible that in this particular case the screws are behind labels or something. It’s also possible that they’ve started making plastic cases that are glued together and can’t be opened, though I’d be a bit surprised if this were the case.

The good news is that reel-type tapes are much easier to fix than spring-loaded ones.