I get the impression that PLA is falling out of favor to some degree (looks like Lulzbot is pushing nGen lately), but I use eSun’s PLA+ (aka PLA Pro) for that sort of purpose. I’ve had mixed results with other PLAs – inconsistent diameter being one big problem, heat-creep being another. I also try to avoid white filaments; whatever they use to create that color just seems to cause difference temperature characteristics regardless of manufacturer.
When it comes to evaluating precise size, particularly when fitting multiple printed parts together, I’ve found it best to just use the same filament – things like shrinkage will bite you if you don’t. A little persistent searching on eBay is a great way to find low-cost spools of filament sometimes – for example, I’ve a couple of spools of Village Plastics ABS that I picked up cheap to use for throw-away parts, the only issue being that they’re just plain awful colors that I’d never use for anything else!
(Don’t want to give the impression that I don’t like nGen – I do, it’s just really expensive, and requires special prep on the bed, which I like to avoid for experimentation with fit, etc.)