How to Draw a Thermometer

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Thermometers are instruments used to measure temperature. The first thermometer was built in 1592 by Galileo Galilei. They did not become widely available until the 1800s.

How does a thermometer work? Mercury, a type of liquid metal, or a similar chemical that is reactive to heat is held in the bulb at the bottom of the thermometer. The bulb is held under the tongue or another part of the body. As the temperature of the mercury rises, it expands. This expansion forces it up the tube. Markings on the thermometer compare the height of the liquid to a known temperature scale.

Thermometers are often used to symbolize two things - extreme weather and the medical field. For the former, the thermometer may be anthropomorphized, given a face and limbs. It may be sweating in the heat of summer or shivering as temperatures drop below freezing. In depicting illness, the thermometer is often drawn protruding from a patient's mouth. This is seen on get-well cards. Thermometers may also be used in scenes of science experiments or cooking in the kitchen.

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Would you like to draw a cartoon thermometer? This easy, step-b-step cartoon object drawing tutorial is here to show you how. All you will need is a pencil, an eraser, and a sheet of paper.

While many thermometers today are digital, this drawing guide features a traditional liquid thermometer. Other thermometer types include gas thermometers, magnetic thermometers, thermocouples, electrical-resistance thermometers, and bimetallic strip thermometers.

If you liked this tutorial, see also the following drawing guides: Microscope, Cartoon Scientist, and Doctor.

Step-by-Step Instructions for Drawing a Thermometer

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 1

1. Begin by outlining the basic shape of the thermometer. Use a long, curved line to craft the irregular shape. Notice that it is widest at the top, and that it slopes gently before a sudden decrease in width.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 2

2. Draw a curved line across the bottom of the thermometer. This section is called the spherical bulb, and it holds the mercury or other chemicals used to measure temperature.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 3

3. Extend a long, curved line from above the spherical bulb. As it nears the top of the thermometer, double it back upon itself until it reaches the bottom of the device. This forms the capillary tube, through which the mercury flows as it heats up.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 4

4. Draw a line across the capillary tube. This marks the height that the liquid inside the thermometer has reached.

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How to Draw Thermometer: Step 5

5. Draw a long, curved line surrounding the capillary chamber, meeting it just above the spherical bulb on both sides. This represents the area on which the thermometer's scale lines are marked.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 6

6. Draw a set of long, straight, parallel lines on the lower half of the capillary tube. Enclose a circular shape to connect them on each end. This forms a shine on the curved glass of the thermometer.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 7

7. Draw a pair of straight lines along the upper portion of the capillary tube. Connect them with a circular shape at each end.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 8

8. Draw short straight lines along one side of the capillary tube. These are the scale lines that allow you to accurately read the temperature.

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How to Draw Thermometer: Step 9

9. Use curved lines to draw a curved shape, pointed on both ends, across the tip of the thermometer. Near the top of the thermometer, write a degree symbol (a small circle) and the letter "C." This indicates that the thermometer is marked in degrees Celsius. Alternatively, if you live in the United States, Belize, the Bahamas, Cayman Islands, or Palau, you can replace the "C" with an "F" for degrees Fahrenheit.

How to Draw Thermometer: Step 10

Color your cartoon thermometer. Mercury is naturally silver, but the fluid in thermometers is often dyed red. Some thermometers have green fluid.

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The Complete Thermometer Drawing Tutorial in One Image

How to Draw Thermometer

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