Paper weight US/UK conversion

26th February 2019   Trevor Holding

Paper weight US/UK conversion

In the US they sell paper in pounds (lbs), then they have different categories, Bond, Text, Book, Cover, Index and Tag and to really confuse it they show the weight as a measurement of 500 sheets in its untrimmed size. An uncut sheet of Bond paper is 17 x 22 inches, and an uncut sheet of Cover paper is 20 x 26 inches. So 500 sheets of Bond paper (17” x 22”) weighs 20 lbs, even when cut to Letter size (279 x 215mm) it will be labelled as 20 lb. 500 sheets of Cover paper (20 x 26 inches) weighs 65 lbs, trimmed to tabloid size (432 by 279mm) would still be marked as 65lb.

Bond 17″ x 22″
Book, Text 25″ x 38″
Bristol 22 1/2″ x 28 1/2″
Cover 20″ x 26″
Index 25 1/2″ x 30 1/2″
Tag 24″ x 36″

This chart shows the most commonly used weights and it’s comparison to gsm

US lbs conversion to UK gsm
US Pounds lbs UK gsm Paper description
13# bond 45gsm Thin document paper
16# bond 55gsm Thin document paper
40# text 60gsm Thin document paper
20# bond 75gsm Standard copy paper
24# bond 90gsm Standard Letterhead paper
60# text 90gsm Standard Letterhead paper
28# bond 105gsm Thicker Letterhead paper
70# text 105gsm Thicker Letterhead paper
40# cover 105gsm Thicker Letterhead paper
32# bond 120gsm Sturdy Letterhead paper
36# bond 135gsm Heavy paper
50# cover 135gsm Heavy paper
40# bond 150gsm Heavy paper
50# bond 180gsm Thin card
60# cover 163gsm Thin card
100# tag 163gsm Thin card
90# index 163gsm Thin card
65# cover 176gsm Thin card
110# index 200gsm Medium card
80# cover 216gsm Medium card
90# cover 243gsm Standard postcard
140# index 250gsm Standard postcard
100# cover 271gsm Standard postcard
110# cover 300gsm Thick postcard
170# index 310gsm Thick card
130# cover 350gsm Business Card board
220# index 400gsm Business Card board
160# cover 433gsm Business Card board

Did you know where the term ‘bond’ paper comes from?

The name ‘bond’ paper comes from it having originally being used for documents such as government bonds. It is now used as a term to describe uncoated multipurpose paper.

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