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)


2 of 2


shimmed; shimming

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
To prevent that, the manufacturer provides some very thin shim metal. Roy Berendsohn, Popular Mechanics, 28 Aug. 2023 The steering wheel column had been stripped, the ignition mechanism was hanging down and a metal shim had been shoved inside the column, indicating that the car had been stolen. Bob Sandrick, cleveland, 18 Aug. 2023 Flip the board upside down and place 1/8-inch shims at the corners in an L-shape, along the inside base and inside top edge of the cornhole board. Hannah Bruneman, Better Homes & Gardens, 2 Aug. 2023 The Weeknd announced the news on his Instagram, using an image that see shim snuggled up to his Idol co-star, Lily-Rose Depp to catch the attention of followers. Hugh McIntyre, Forbes, 20 Apr. 2023 Shim the board to the proper alignment, then hot glue those shims—and the board—in place. Jean Levasseur, Popular Science, 21 Mar. 2023 An increasing number of guns come with shims and spacers to allow their owners to adjust fit to some extent. Phil Bourjaily, Field & Stream, 20 Mar. 2023 Our one complaint with this two-stage snow blower was the manual adjustment required to position the skid shoes (the plastic shims that govern how far the snow-sucking mechanism is lifted from the pavement). Cai Cramer, Peoplemag, 17 Feb. 2023 Glue and screw the shim in place. Andrew Freye, Popular Mechanics, 29 Oct. 2021
Johnston had shimmed out of his cell window – which was 1 foot wide and 4 feet tall – after cutting the center bar with a hacksaw blade. Cara Tabachnick, CBS News, 14 Sep. 2023 This process is much easier—and safer—than trying to shim up uneven corners with wood scraps or cardboard. Alex Rennie, Popular Mechanics, 10 June 2023 And the season 18 contestants even make a cameo as well, shimming to the lyrics backstage. Katie Intner,, 7 Jan. 2020 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, 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, 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, 19 Apr. 2017 Walls are shimmed up on small glass-phallus sculptures. The New Yorker, 31 Mar. 2017 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'shim.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History



origin unknown

First Known Use


1860, in the meaning defined above


circa 1890, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of shim was in 1860

Dictionary Entries Near shim

Cite this Entry

“Shim.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Oct. 2023.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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