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PosiTector® RTR H

Surface Profile Gage for Blasted Steel and Textured Coatings

Digital spring micrometers measure and record surface profile parameters using Testex Press-O-Film™ replica tape.
  • Ready to measure – no calibration adjustment required for most applications
  • Produces a more accurate peak-to-valley height measurement
  • Solvent, acid, oil, water, and dust resistant – weatherproof
  • PosiTector interchangeable platform – attach any PosiTector probe to a single gage body
  • USB, WiFi, and Bluetooth connectivity to PosiSoft PC, Mac, and Smartphone software
  • Certificate of Calibration showing traceability to PTB included (Long Form)
Conforms to ASTM D4417, ISO 8503-5, NACE RP287, SSPC-PA 17, SSPC-SP5, SP6, SP10, SP11-87T and others
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  • Automatically subtracts the 50.8 μm (2 mil) incompressible film from all readings
  • Minimizes inspector workload by reducing the number of replicas needed to ensure accuracy. See linearized peak height (HL)
  • High contrast, color LCD
  • Enhanced one-handed menu navigation
  • RESET feature instantly restores factory settings
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  • Solvent, acid, oil, water and dust resistant - weatherproof
  • Rugged indoor/outdoor instrument – ideal for field or shop use
  • Shock-absorbing, protective rubber holster with belt clip
  • Two year warranty on gage body AND probe
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  • Mils/Microns switchable
  • Selectable display languages
  • High Contrast backlit display for bright or dark environments
  • Flip display enables right-side-up viewing
  • Uses alkaline or rechargeable batteries (built-in charger)

Standard Models

Includes ALL features as shown on left plus...
Includes ALL features as shown above plus...
  • Storage of 250 readings per probe—stored readings can be viewed or downloaded

Advanced Models

Includes ALL features as shown on left plus...
Includes ALL features as shown above plus...
  • Storage of 100,000 readings from multiple probes in up to 1,000 batches and sub-batches
  • Live graphing of measurement data
  • Onscreen Batch Annotation—add notes, change batch names and more with built-in QWERTY keyboard
  • WiFi technology wirelessly synchronizes with and downloads software updates
  • Bluetooth 4.0 Technology for data transfer to a mobile device running the PosiTector App or optional portable printer. BLE API available for integration into third-party software.
  • Integrate with third-party software, drones, ROVs, PLCs, and robotic devices using several industry-standard communication protocols
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  • Statistics mode continually displays/updates average, standard deviation, min/max thickness and number of readings while measuring
  • Sealed USB port for fast, simple connection to a PC and to supply continuous power. USB cable included
  • Software Updates via web keep your gage current
  • Screen Capture – record and save image into USB flash memory for record keeping and review
  • Software Solutions for viewing, analyzing & reporting data
  • Every stored measurement is date and time stamped
Probe Interchangeability


20 to 115 μm
(0.8 to 4.5 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Accuracy
± 5 μm (± 0.2 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Resolution
1 μm (0.1 mil)
Anvil Diameter
Ø6.35 mm (Ø0.25 inch)
Anvil Pressure
110 gram-force (1.1 Newtons)
152 x 61 x 28 mm
(6" x 2.4" x 1.1")
Peak Height (HL)
Measurement Range
140 g (4.9 oz.) without batteries
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How It Works

prepare the surface with cleaning putty



Preparation of both the surface to be tested and the PosiTector RTR H are necessary before performing the test.

To prepare surface:

  • Use cleaning putty to remove dust, debris, or residual blast media from the measurement site by firmly pressing the putty onto surface to be tested using your fingers and remove

To prepare the PosiTector RTR H:

  • Clean anvils using included cleaning card. Swipe card through opening a few times while firmly pressing both probe buttons to remove dust
  • Zero probe and verify accuracy with included shim
  • Ensure correct grade of replica tape is displayed in upper left hand corner of LCD
burnish the replica tape



Testex Press-O-Film™ replica tape consists of a layer of compressible foam affixed to an incompressible polyester film of highly uniform thickness. When pressed against a roughened steel surface, the foam forms an impression, or reverse replica, of the surface.

  • Select appropriate grade of replica tape based on target profile
  • Pull a single adhesive-backed replica tape free of its release paper and apply to blasted surface
  • Firmly compress replica film using the rounded end of the included stainless steel burnishing tool. Apply sufficient pressure in a circular and x-y rubbing motion for 30-60 seconds to fully compress all parts of the film. In general, too much compression is safer than too little.
  • When complete, remove replica tape from surface
measure with PosiTector RTR



Placing the compressed tape (replica) into the PosiTector RTR H gives a measure of the average maximum peak-to-valley height of the surface roughness profile.

  • Insert the burnished replica tape into the measurement opening. Ensure the tape is properly positioned so that the burnished region is centered within the opening in the probe with the adhesive (sticky) side down.
  • To position the tape, move the Testex™ Press-O-Film™ replica tape to the back of the probe and align the two dots (printed on replica tape) with arrows on both sides of the measurement opening.
  • Once positioned, firmly press both probe buttons simultaneously and hold until the PosiTector RTR H beeps and the measurement is displayed.

The gage automatically subtracts the thickness of the polyester substrate from all measurements.

illustration showing how replica tape works

Linearized Peak Height

Two grades of Testex™ Press-O-Film™ replica tape, “Coarse” and "X-Coarse", are available to span the primary range of surface profiles for the coatings and linings industry –– 20 to 115 µm / 0.8 to 4.5 mils.

An unfortunate characteristic of replica tape is that conventional spring micrometer measurements are most accurate near the middle of each grade's range and least accurate at the outer ends of each grade's range. That is why two other grades, Coarse Minus (< 20 µm / 0.8 mils) and X-Coarse Plus (> 115 µm / 4.5 mils), are used to check and, if necessary, adjust measurements at the upper and lower ends of the primary range.

Inside the primary range, Coarse and X-Coarse tape share a 38 - 64 μm (1.5 - 2.5 mils) "overlap" region. Measurements with conventional micrometers require a complicated and time consuming procedure of averaging one reading using Coarse grade and one reading using X-Coarse grade to achieve reasonable accuracy.

With a single measurement, the PosiTector RTR H produces a more accurate peak-to-valley height measurement HL from Coarse or X-Coarse tapes that has been adjusted for their non-linearity. There is no need to average two or more replicas from different grades of tape AND there is no need to subtract the 50.8 μm / 2 mils of incompressible polyester film. The advantages are a reduction in measurement uncertainty, inspector workload, likelihood of error, and the number of replicas needed by inspectors to assure accuracy.

The PosiTector RTR H can also display a height value (H) that is comparable to what conventional analog spring micrometers would display after the 50.8 μm / 2 mils of incompressible polyester film has been subtracted.

View More Information


Step 1: Choose a gage body

Step 2: Select A Model

Click model to download cutsheet
PosiTector RTR with standard gage body
Peak Height (HL) Measurement Range
20 to 115 μm (0.8 to 4.5 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Accuracy
± 5 μm (± 0.2 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Resolution
1 μm (0.2 mils)
Anvil Diameter
Ø6.3 mm (Ø0.25 inch)
Anvil Pressure
110 gram-force (1.1 Newtons)
View PDFAdd To Quote

Step 2: Select A Model

Click model to download cutsheet
PosiTector RTR with advanced gage body
Peak Height (HL) Measurement Range
20 to 115 μm (0.8 to 4.5 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Accuracy
± 5 μm (± 0.2 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Resolution
1 μm (0.2 mils)
Anvil Diameter
Ø6.3 mm (Ø0.25 inch)
Anvil Pressure
110 gram-force (1.1 Newtons)
View PDFAdd To Quote

Step 2: Select A Model

Click model to download cutsheet
PosiTector RTR probe
Peak Height (HL) Measurement Range
20 to 115 μm (0.8 to 4.5 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Accuracy
± 5 μm (± 0.2 mils)
Peak Height (HL) Resolution
1 μm (0.2 mils)
Anvil Diameter
Ø6.3 mm (Ø0.25 inch)
Anvil Pressure
110 gram-force (1.1 Newtons)
View PDFAdd To Quote
SmartLink and app in use

PosiTector SmartLink - A Smart New Way to Measure

PosiTector SmartLink and free mobile app turns your cell phone or tablet into a virtual PosiTector gage.

Wirelessly connect PosiTector probes to your Apple iOS or Android smart device.

For more information about the PosiTector SmartLink, click here.


PosiSoft Software in use

PosiSoft Desktop

Powerful desktop software for downloading, viewing, printing and storing measurement data. No internet connection required.

  • Simple, intuitive user interface
  • Import readings directly from the gage via USB or from legacy PosiSoft desktop versions
  • Synchronize measurement data including readings, notes and pictures to and from
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The intuitive and familiar user interface of PosiSoft Desktop brought to your web browser. Data is securely stored in the cloud.

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PosiTector App

An easy-to-use mobile app (iOS/ Android) that connects to your PosiTector Advanced, PosiTector Smartlink, or PosiTest AT.

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PosiSoft USB

A simple gage interface to retrieve data in a manner similar to a flash drive. No software to install or internet connection required.

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PosiSoft Custom PDF Report Generator

featured on PosiSoft Desktop,, PosiTector App
Easily create reports from your measurement data in seconds
  • Generate custom, professional PDF reports
  • Include inspection information such as on-site pictures, screen captures, notes and more to communicate important details
  • Create and save multiple custom layouts as templates – insert cover pages, add logos/images, and select font and point size
  • Select the information to include for each product type – charts, histograms, readings, time stamps and more
  • Compile multi-batch reports from one or more probes and instrument types

PosiTector Developer Resources

From wired USB to WiFi wireless technology, DeFelsko instruments offer data management solutions for even the most advanced software integrations. Accessing your stored or live streaming data is simpler and more flexible than ever before. PosiTector and PosiTest AT-A instruments have the ability to integrate with third-party software, drones, ROVs, PLCs, and robotic devices using several industry-standard communication protocols.

Learn More about Integrating Third-Party Devices and Applications


Do your instruments require any formal training for use? Do you offer ‘demo’ models?

No. Our instruments are designed for simple operation, feature easy-to-use menus, both full and quick instruction manuals, and helpful videos. In lieu of demonstration models, we provide unlimited technical support via telephone and/or email, and a limited 30-day money back guarantee.

Is the PosiTector RTR H calibrated at the factory?

The PosiTector RTR arrives fully calibrated and ready to measure. A Long-Form Certificate of Calibration traceable to NIST is included, which documents actual readings taken by your instrument at our calibration laboratory on standards traceable to a national metrology institute. Beware of ‘Certificates’ or ‘Certificates of Conformance’ offered by competitors. These typically do not include actual instrument readings, and are often insufficient to meet common quality requirements.

Verification of gage calibration and accuracy can be performed with the supplied check shim, which is specifically intended for all PosiTector RTR probes. 

What is replica tape?

Replica tape is a long-known method for characterizing a surface. It is simple, relatively inexpensive and shows good correlation with results from other methods. It has the advantages of ruggedness, relatively low start-up cost, good repeatability and the option of retaining a physical replica of the surface being evaluated. The method is widely used and widely understood. It is particularly useful for measurements on curved surfaces that are difficult to measure directly with other instruments. It is therefore not surprising that it has become the most popular field method for measuring surface profile. Its operation is described in a number of international standards including ASTM D4417, ISO 8503-5, NACE SP0287, and AS 3894.5.

What grades of replica tape is the PosiTector RTR H compatible with?

The PosiTector RTR measures the two primary grades of replica tape: Coarse and X‐Coarse. The other grades of replica tape, Coarse Minus and X‐Coarse Plus, are check grades that are used only to confirm or improve the accuracy of conventional analog spring micrometer measurements at the lower end of the Coarse tape’s range (Coarse Minus) and at the upper end of the X‐Coarse tape’s range (X‐Coarse Plus). Since the PosiTector RTR automatically corrects for the non‐linearity of Coarse and X‐Coarse tape, these other check grades are not required.

Why should I purchase the PosiTector RTR H over a conventional snap gage?

The PosiTector RTR offers a number of advantages over a mechanical spring micrometer:

  • Linearization feature increases measurement accuracy and reduces tape consumption.
  • Unique opposing spring design prevents undesired user interferences from occurring.
  • Large digital display for clear, easy-to-read measurements with the ability to store and download readings.
  • Arrives fully calibrated and includes a traceable calibration certificate.
  • Interchangeable probe design offers the ability to use a single PosiTector gage body for a wide variety of applications: surface profile, coating thickness, wall thickness, salt contamination, Shore hardness and environmental.
Is the PosiTector RTR H as accurate as conventional spring micrometers?

The PosiTector RTR’s displayed HL (linearized height) value is a more accurate surface profile measurement because it adjusts for tape non‐linearity without the need to average the results from 2 or more replicas. Linearization is a technique used to insure uniform accuracy of measurement in many types of advanced sensors. Its use in connection with replica tape is described here.

Do I need to take two measurements in some surface profile ranges with the PosiTector RTR H, as is required with the spring micrometer?

No. With a single measurement, the gage produces a more accurate peak‐to‐valley height measurement HL. The advantages are a reduction in measurement uncertainty, inspector workload, the likelihood of error, and the number of replicas needed by inspectors to assure accuracy.

Together with Testex, DeFelsko determined the non‐linear relationship between actual steel profile peak‐to‐valley heights and their replicated heights on tape. By adjusting for this non-linearity, the PosiTector RTR is able to overcome the shortcomings imposed by replica tape foam.

Why does the blasted steel under the burnished replica tape appear shiny, and different from the surrounding area?

Abrasive blasting often leaves debris on the surface, which changes its appearance. If the surface isn’t cleaned with the included cleaning putty before measuring, the replica tape captures this debris and ‘cleans’ the surface where the tape was burnished. This may make the test area appear ‘shiny’ compared to the surrounding area, and is not a sign of damage to the blast profile.

How do you position replica tape into the PosiTector RTR H?

Testex Press‐O‐Film replica tape is produced with two positioning dots that align with arrows located on both sides of the PosiTector RTR’s probe. Move the tape to the back of the probe, align the dots, and then press the two probe buttons. Measurement is fast, simple and accurate.

Should I purchase the PosiTector RTR or PosiTector SPG for my application?

Both instruments conform to ASTM D 4417 "Standard Test Methods for Field Measurement of Surface Profile of Blast Cleaned Steel".

The PosiTector SPG conforms to Method B of ASTM D 4417. The PosiTector SPG measures quickly, and has no per-test cost. It keeps a digital record of each measurement, is less operator dependent, as no burnishing of replica tape is required. It also has a greater range than replica tape.

The PosiTector RTR conforms to Method C of ASTM D 4417. It is used together with Testex Replica tape, a widely used and respected method to measure surface profile. It has the ability to measure on curved surfaces, and gives the user the option to retain the replica tape; a physical replica of the tested surface.

What is the spring pressure on the probe? Do I have to apply a specific pressure to the buttons?

The anvil impact force of the PosiTector RTR is identical to that of conventional mechanical spring micrometers. The PosiTector RTR has the same anvil size (0.25 inch / 6.25mm diameter) and applies the same spring tension (110 gram‐force / 1.1 Newtons) as Testex micrometers and as required by major test standards.

An issue with mechanical spring micrometers is that they can under‐read if a user drops the measuring anvils onto the replica tape too fast. Other errors can occur if the user presses upward on measuring arms to “stabilize” readings. Both actions force conventional micrometers to read lower by crushing the tape’s delicate microfoam.

The PosiTector RTR’s unique opposing spring design prevents these undesired user interferences from occurring. Pressing the two probe buttons releases a holding spring. That allows a second spring, the anvil spring, to apply a constant pressure measuring force on the replica. This measuring force is not coupled to the buttons so the user cannot alter the applied pressure and inadvertently influence results.

How often should the PosiTector probe be recalibrated?

PosiTector probes include a Certificate of Calibration with no expiry or end date. They have no shelf life, therefore the length of time in the field is not a good indicator for recalibration intervals. Many organizations with quality programs and recertification programs require annual recalibrations, and this is a good starting point for most users. DeFelsko recommends that customers establish calibration intervals based upon their own experience and work environment. Based on our product knowledge, data and customer feedback, a one year calibration interval from the date the instrument was placed in service is a good starting point.


PosiTector Gage BodiesPosiTector Gage Bodies

PosiTector Gage Bodies can be used with all PosiTector probes. Choose from Standard or Advanced models.

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PosiTector ProbesPosiTector Probes

PosiTector bodies accept all PosiTector probes easily converting from a coating thickness gage to a surface profile gage, dew point meter, soluble salt tester, hardness and ultrasonic thickness gage.

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Bluetooth PrinterBluetooth Printer

Battery-operated and light weight, this Bluetooth Printer prints readings and statistical summaries via Bluetooth from Advanced models.

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PosiTector CasePosiTector Case

Convenient hard shell case for carrying a PosiTector gage body and multiple probes

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Testex™ Press-O-Film™ Replica TapeTestex™ Press-O-Film™ Replica Tape

50 pieces (impressions) per roll

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AC Power KitAC Power Kit

Use for continuous operation or battery charging. This kit supplies several alternate power solutions for your battery-operated PosiTector. Operate your gage without the need for batteries.

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Certified PosiTector RTR Shim SetCertified PosiTector RTR Shim Set

Used to verify the accuracy and operation of PosiTector RTR and other spring micrometer replica tape readers

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Pelican Cases for PosiTector Inspection KitsPelican Cases for PosiTector Inspection Kits

Heavy-duty, waterproof Pelican cases complete with a custom foam insert to securely hold your PosiTector instrument.

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PosiTector RTR Check ShimPosiTector RTR Check Shim

Used to check PosiTector RTR peak height accuracy (RTR H and RTR 3D). One check shim is included with each probe.

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Surface Cleaning PuttySurface Cleaning Putty

To clean the test surface of debris prior to burnishing

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Cleaning CardsCleaning Cards

Pre-moistened with isopropyl alcohol to clean residual adhesive and debris from the anvils helping to insure an accurate test.

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Stainless Steel Burnishing ToolStainless Steel Burnishing Tool

Round-end (Ø8 mm) rubbing tool to compress replica film on the blasted surface.

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Protective Lens ShieldProtective Lens Shield

Pack of 5 thin plastic lens shields to protect PosiTector display from paint overspray. One lens shield included in every PosiTector purchase.

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Rechargeable BatteriesRechargeable Batteries

Precharged batteries ready to use with a considerably longer run time than conventional Nickel Cadmium batteries. High performance in low temperatures and no charger required.

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