\ ˈshim How to pronounce shim (audio) \

Definition of shim

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a thin, often tapered piece of material (such as wood, metal, or stone) used to fill in space between things (as for support, leveling, or adjustment of fit)


shimmed; shimming

Definition of shim (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to fill out or level up by the use of a shim

Examples of shim in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Most need regular leveling, which involves jacking up a house and, at a minimum, adding wood shims under posts to even it out. Lisa Demer, Anchorage Daily News, "‘The permafrost is dying’: Bethel sees increased shifting of roads and buildings," 7 July 2017 Earlier last year workers discovered a 4-inch bolt that had broken off one of the shims designed to help distribute heat inside a canister, and work was stopped for 10 days. San Diego Union-Tribune, "San Onofre owners, contractor and regulators face new lawsuit over fuel storage plan," 30 Aug. 2019 There are two good options for the wedge: felling wedges or construction shims, the longer and thinner the better. Andrew Northshield, Popular Mechanics, "How To Get Keys Out of a Locked Car," 19 Dec. 2018 And while the information contained on the chip, and potentially the shim, can’t be used to clone a chip card, it can potentially be used to make a traditional magnetic strip card to empty your accounts, reported. Natalie Dreier, ajc, "How ‘shimming’ can steal your credit card data," 7 May 2018 Wooden shims wouldn’t stay put, so Perrin experimented with various designs using a 3D printer. Roger Showley,, "Amateur inventors right the world with solutions for back pain, broken windows, wobbly tables and inaccessible toilets," 27 Apr. 2018 Add staking or shims or any other method necessary to stabilize the disk from being blown or pushed over, then cover it all up with a lot of strap leaf plants. Maureen Gilmer, idahostatesman, "Standing disks add circle-of-life element to your garden | Idaho Statesman," 14 Mar. 2018 The coupe's rear seat, however, is more steeply angled and requires a shim to level the child seat. Greg Fink, Car and Driver, "2018 Audi S5 Coupe and Cabriolet," 31 Jan. 2018 No sitting still allowed, especially at the end, when audience members will learn the shim sham, a swing-era line dance. 718-463-7700, Ext. Laurel Graeber, New York Times, "Events for Children in NYC This Week," 11 Jan. 2018 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb Spatial Relations Many European companies also offer base cabinets with adjustable legs that can be quickly leveled for faster, easier installation, instead of laboriously trimmed and shimmed, which is the traditional technique. Elle Decor Staff, ELLE Decor, "Cabinet Fever," 5 July 2012 The lower LATCH anchors are easy to connect and the rear door opening is wide, but extra support is required to shim the child seat level, and passengers up front will need to move forward to an uncomfortable position. Eric Stafford, Car and Driver, "2018 Toyota Corolla iM," 25 Aug. 2017 Shim up any low blocks with strips of asphalt roofing, cedar shingles or 2-in.-thick concrete patio block. Joseph Truini, Popular Mechanics, "How to Build a Shed, Colonial-Style," 19 Apr. 2017 Walls are shimmed up on small glass-phallus sculptures. The New Yorker, "Monica Bonvicini," 31 Mar. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'shim.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of shim


1860, in the meaning defined above


circa 1890, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for shim


origin unknown

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Last Updated

25 Dec 2019

Cite this Entry

“Shim.” The Dictionary, Merriam-Webster Inc., Accessed 21 January 2020.

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Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with shim

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