What are the different types of dial indicator? Above and beyond the basic design formats of balanced and continuous readout, there are a number of different types of dial indicators that users can choose from. Test dial indicators are built with a needle to one side. These dial indicators are adjustable and may be calibrated to complete a measurement of a number of different machines and parts making them very versatile. Plunger dial indicators look very similar, but come instead with a plunger on one side, attached to a hinge point. These indicators can be either mechanical or electrical in design and are commonly used to measure injection molding machines. Lever dial indicators are identified mainly by their lever and scroll, which work together as the mechanism that moves the stylus to take the final measurement. Dial indicators can also be distinguished by their connection method. The connection method determines how the indicator connects to what it is measuring, and may involve a c-clamp or a swivel clamp.