Changing Your Paper Weight, Page Count, or Trim Size? Don’t Guess; Calculate!

by Wendy


Have you ever wanted to do a quick calculation to determine the impact on the weight of your publication if you were to change your page count, the basis weight of your paper, or your trim size?Calculator

The following formula allows you to calculate the total weight of the text pages (this calculation assumes you are using a coated paper) for a single copy. If your publication is a self-cover and mails without any add-ons or a polybag, you’ve got your weight! Don’t worry about staples and ink; they typically don’t add up to much and are only a factor if you are very close to a dividing line on mail weights.


“Length x Width” represents your trim size (say 8.5″ x 11″). “Basis weight” is the basis weight of the text paper (say 45#, 50# or 60#). Number of text pages should be the total number of pages (so if your book is 64 pages plus cover, you would use 64 here).

Are you adding a 4 page cover? Use the following to estimate and add your cover weight:

8/10/12 pt, add 1.0 oz.
65# cover, add 0.5 oz.
80/90/100# cover, add 0.67 oz.

While the result is an estimated weight, it comes very close, and can be useful in determining whether or not your publication will fall within one mail weight category or another. For exact weights, ask your printer or request a dummy and put it on a scale.

At Sheridan, we appreciate that you are in print!