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High-Precision Hardness (SH-21)

The Sonohard SH-21, starting at $7,350. Click Here to Buy Now!

The Handy Hardness Tester model SH-21 differs completely from traditional hardness testers. Instead of measuring the size of the indentation of the test sample using a microscope, it uses a diamond indenter equipped with a vibrating rod that presses on the test surface at a fixed load and then measures its hardness by applying ultrasonic vibrations and analyzing its damping effect.The technique is very reproducible which makes the SH21 a perfect tool for on-site measurements as for example maintenance of large scale structures, vehicles, ships, steel towers, bridges, aviation aircraft. It is ideal for inspection of difficult to get area such as crank shaft metal casts, gears and grooved area.

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Model name
Handy Hardness Tester SONOHARD® SH-21(E)
(Motorized/manual switchover type probe)
Measuring indenter
Diamond indenter for Micro-Vickers
(facing-to-surface angle of 136°)
Test load and control no. CE making complied models are required to add (CE) with control no.
1. Approx 2kgf (roughly 20N)
2. Approx 1kgf (roughly 10N)
3. Approx 4kgf (roughly 40N)
(special type manual probe only)
Measuring range
1. Rockwell hardness HRC 10~70
2. Vickers hardness HV 50~999
3. Shore hardness HS20.0~99.9
4. Brinell hardness HB 85~550
HRC: +/- 1.0HRC, HV: +/- (3%rdg) HV,
HS: +/- 1.0HS, HB: (3%rdg) HB
Applicable test materials
With steel as the principle material, other metallic materials may also be measured by calibrating against a standard hardness test block.
Display of measured values
Digital display (LCD, 4 digits) with EL backlight
Data memory
2,000 pieces
Digital display units
1HV, 0.1HRC, 0.1HS, 1HB, 1N/mm2 (tensile strength)
Allowable operating temperature
Power source
AC adapter(100–240V) or lithium ion rechargeable battery
Continuous operating hours
5 hours when featuring a rechargeable BL; 8 hours without BL
*BL = backlight
Display unit: 97(W) x 50(D) x 170(H) mm,
Probe diameter: 40mm, length: 164mm
Display unit: approx. 400g (including battery),
Probe and cable: approx.. 400g
Carrying case dimensions
400(W) x 220(D) x 140(H) mm
Standard components
1 display unit, 1 probe (including standard attachment / UA 5410),
1 hardness standard test block (around HRC55),
1 probe cable 1.5m, 1 AC adapter 100~240V (A05C1-09MI),
1 recharger (MK-8220), 1 lithium ion battery (MK-8401),
1 carrying case (MK-9701)
Display make-up
a. Measured value: 3 digits
b. TIMES: 2 digits (measuring frequency)
c. MAX value: 3 digits
d. MIN value (3 digits
e: o: 4 digits (standard deviation)
f: x: 4 digits (average value)
a. UPPER (upper limit)
b. LOWER (lower limit)
c. TIMES (measuring frequency)
a. Alarm (buzzer sound)
a. RSC-232C output used for data transmission or printing
1. Motorized / manual switchover type approx. 69~71KHz
2. Manual type (special type) approx. 38~40KHz
HV, HRC, HS HB, N/mm2 according to JIS B 7731, ASTM E 140, DIN 50150
Standard hardness test blocks HV600, HS50, HB300 used for scale calibration,
Measuring stand for small objects (SH-S02),
Probe attachment for pipes materials (UA4-4005),
Probe attachment for inner races (UA4-4006),
Printer model DPUH245AS with cable,
Printer paper (TP-H241L),
Stand for the main unit (SH-P03)

  • Quick measurement (few seconds)
  • Best repeatability and precision portable unit
  • Direct reading of hardness
  • Easy to use hand held probe can be quickly applied to a variety of surfaces from any direction.
  • Easy to use - no prior experience of hardness measurement techniques required
  • Built in memory for data and calibration points
  • Measures Vickers, Rockwell, Brinell and Shore scales
  • Interchangeable probes for use with different surface profiles - pipes - concave surfaces, gears valves etc.
  • Portable works with NiCd battery

The SH21 is very easy to use and requires no special knowledge of hardness testing in order to operate the instrument. The unit includes all four hardness scales and you can switch between them at the touch of a button. The current scale is always indicated on the display.

To make a hardness measurement the probe is pressed against the surface to be measured and held in position for a few seconds until a reading is obtained. The result is immediately displayed in the selected hardness scale on the display. Several measurements can be taken sequentially and the average and standard deviation will be calculated automatically by the instrument.

The calibration procedure is equally straightforward. A measurement is made on known standard test block and entered into memory as a calibration point. The tool is ideal for inspection and quality control applications in a production environment. It is light weight and portable and can be operated from rechargeable batteries or a power adapter.

Probes Attachments and Measuring Stand

Below are the dimensions of the probe with the standard attachment. It is also possible to have specific attachment for special applications such as for pipes materials and for inner races. To the right is the measuring stand used for small objects.