Over the weekend I was cleaning out my office and found this great little cheat sheet I created years ago for understanding paper types as explained by one of my printing mentors, Jon Anderson.
The weight of a paper is determined by how much a ream (500 sheets) weighs in the basis size. The basis size is the size it is produced at the mill.
- Typical weight: 20lb
- Basis size: 17″ x 22″
- Qualities: Good for writing and erasing
- Typical weight: 50lb
- Basis size: 25″ x 38″
- Qualities: Made for stability with water; Comes in coated or uncoated. Created about 80 years ago
- Typical weights: 65lb, 80lb
- Basis size: 26″ x 40″
- Qualities: Fluffier or bulkier
- Typical weight: 90lb, 110lb, 140lb
- Basis size: 22.5″ x 28.5″
- Qualities: Calendar (or mashed), easy to erase
- Typical weight: 22lb and 28lb
- Qualities: High calendar, easy to erase