I currently have two big johnson tape measures and have been looking frantically for more. I read your article and agree with you completely. If you know of any sources to locate some it would be greatly appreciated.
I had read a while ago that Big Johnson tapes were actually manufactured by a company in the UK called Fisco Precision Tools. I can’t vouch for that, but their “Big T” tapes certainly look the same. Sears and K-Mart (which are actually the same company) sell them.