How to measure the thickness of paper
Best ways to measure paper thickness
The thickness of the paper, paperboard and corrugated used in your packaging may seem like just one factor to consider, but it is incredibly important. The thickness of paper and paperboard not only affects its strength and durability, it’s appearance and tactile feedback also gives the customer a direct impression of quality.
So how do you go about getting an accurate measurement for your corrugated papers and boards?
Why measure actual paper thickness?
If you try to determine paper thickness using other metrics, such as weight, your results will show variations based on the quality and type of paper. For example, two sheets of paper weighing 300g could measure in at anywhere between 350 and 500 microns, depending on the quality of the paper. 1 micron is the equivalent of 1/1000 of a millimetre and, of course, the more accurate your reading, the better you can predict the materials behaviour.
Instruments for measuring paper thickness
Measuring paper thickness should be a routine part of any quality control process for packaging. Thankfully, there are several different ways to do it, including with a:
You can measure paper thickness using a caliper. A sheet of paper or paperboard is inserted between the caliper’s jaws. The jaws are then tightened and the distance between them is measured. Digital calipers are capable of displaying the thickness of a single sheet of paper. Manual calipers are likely to need a bundle of paper and for the result to be divided by the number of sheets inserted between the jaws.
Thickness gauges with a non-rotating spindle are another option. Paper or corrugated samples are placed within a small, delicate vice and once the vice is closed, a reading of the thickness is given. This method sometimes requires multiple sheets to be inserted at once for a reading can be taken. The result then needs to be divided by the number of samples.
The best way to measure paper thickness is with a micrometer, which is able to give the most accurate results. Micrometers are capable of delivering measurements to the nearest micron, which offers a highly precise look at the thickness of even single sheets of paper or board.
Paper thickness measuring machines
To be confident that your paper, paperboard or corrugated samples are being accurately measured, it is worth investing in a digital testing machine that is capable of delivering a result in microns.
· Digital Micrometer
For an incredible accurate reading of paper and corrugated thickness, the 49-87 Digital Micrometer is a solid choice. It measures in the range of 0-0.50 in. (0-12.7 mm) and has a sturdy frame, ensuring it can measure boards of a wide range of thicknesses. It can also store and analyze up to 100 readings, including high, low, average and standard deviation for each series of tests.
Measuring paper and corrugated thickness
We have more 3000 unique products to help you find the ideal testing solution and a full range of corrugated testing products. Whether it’s a micrometer to measure corrugated thickness or ECT to check how much weight cardboard or paperboard packaging can hold, we’ve got you covered. Find out more about how we could help you create the right testing environment for your packaging, get in touch to speak to our corrugated specialists.