Servicing portable coordinate measuring machines

In a previous blog, we explored how to enhance your metrology with a Coordinate Measuring Machine (CMM) retrofit. In this blog, we’ll look at the steps we take when servicing a portable measuring arm to keep your equipment at its best.

Our Absolute Arm systems deliver excellent usability and versatility in the production area. But they can also perform in harsh conditions for long periods.

Caring for your portable measuring arm is essential to protect your investment. Regular maintenance ensures the arm performs to its specifications giving you the confidence you need.

We offer advanced servicing for portable measuring arms. This is vital because it helps users prolong the lifespan of their equipment and keep it in good condition.

What happens in a portable coordinate measuring machine (CMM) service?

A thorough check of the portable measuring arm includes a number of key tests.

Inspecting a CMM

A service involves a complete inspection of the portable measuring arm, with tests of:

  • All cables
  • TESA joint connectors (arm and all probes)
  • Control/Feature Pack (including batteries)
  • Buttons on the arm wrist and base
  • LCD wrist display (newer 7-Axis models)
  • Feedback LEDs and pictograms
  • Gas shocks
  • Any accessories and artefacts

Performance check

Before calibration and alignment, we check the performance of the arm and scanner (if applicable). To confirm the machine meets your needs, we check the counterbalance for compliance.

Alignment, calibration and certification

First we check the alignment of the probe and arm. Then we perform the tests and calibrations. This ensures we meet the values specified in the ISO 10360-12 standard:

The length test (Euni)
The arm doesn’t exceed the max error for unidirectional length. The Euni value reflects most measurement needs

Sphere test one (Ldia)
The arm doesn’t exceed the max error for the articulation location. The Ldia value shows the repeatability

Sphere test two (Psize)
The arm doesn’t exceed the max error for measuring the diameter of a sphere. The Psize value is the accuracy of the device

Sphere test three (Pform)
The arm doesn’t exceed the max error for measuring the form of a sphere. The Pform value defines dispersion accuracy

After testing and calibration we provide new certificates.

A man operates a portable CMM, Romer arm

Portable CMMs are small, lightweight, and easy to use, making them ideal for measuring parts on the shop floor.


We update all firmware for the CMM and accessories as part of the service process.


After the service, we will clean the inside of the arm and all cases, cables, artefacts and accessories. We will also replace any labels.

Key considerations when servicing your portable measuring arm

The minimum service interval is 12 months, but consider more frequent service if you use the arm a lot. Or if it’s in a harsh environment.

Depending on model and size of the arm, a service can take between one and three days. All arms that leave our service centres are shipped with an ISO 10360-12, B89.4.22 or VDE/VDI certificate.

Our Absolute Arms come with with optional RDS data collector software. This enables users to perform fast accuracy checks and calibration with a certified length artefact.

We have certified service centres all over the world ready to provide quick and local support. To discuss what service might be right for you, contact customer service and a local representative will be in touch.

In the next blog, we will explore the confidence and supported to be gained from software maintenance agreements.



  • Sam O'Prey

    Sam O’Prey is responsible for sales and marketing for Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence metrology service and support business in the UK & Ireland. Sam joined the company in 2010 and has 14 years’ experience in digital and direct sales and marketing within the manufacturing and technology sectors, with an additional nine years’ experience as an engineering technician and manager within manufacturing and design.

  • Join our HxGN LIVE Events Worldwide

    Hexagon hosts exciting HxGN LIVE events around the globe! Experience our technology innovations in a location near you.

  • Recent Posts