How to Interpret a Gloss Meter Reading - Industrial Physics How to Interpret a Gloss Meter Reading - Industrial Physics

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Interpreting a Gloss Meter Reading

Interpreting a Gloss Meter Reading 

Sometimes you need to know exactly how glossy a paint sample is – and there are few easier ways to take a precise measurement than with a gloss meter. Find out more about how to use a gloss meter and how to interpret its readings in our quickfire guide. 

What is a gloss meter for? 

A gloss meter (sometimes referred to as a glossmeter) is a device that determines the specular reflection, or gloss, of a surface. It projects a beam of light at a fixed angle and intensity onto a surface and then measures how much light is reflected at an equal and opposite angle. Gloss meters are commonly used to measure the gloss of paints and coatings as well as metals, papers and plastics. 

How to take a reading with a gloss meter 

A gloss meter can be used to measure the gloss of a wide range of different surfaces and there are different geometries available for each. There are three main angles used to cover the range of gloss: 20-degree, 60-degree and 85-degree. Some industries, such as paper or ceramics, define their own degrees.  

Gloss Units

To understand the reading of a gloss meter, you need to know that the measurement scales uses Gloss Units (GU). It assumes a highly reflective black glass as having a specular reflectance of 100GU, calibrating this as the upper end, while a perfectly matt surface would be 0GU. 

Why use a gloss meter? 

A gloss meter is a very useful part of the quality control process and it offers a point of reference, allowing manufacturers to ensure consistency across a range of applications.  

Gloss meter standards

To ensure that a gloss meter is recording accurate results that meet standards across a range of industries, it should be calibrated to match master calibration tiles traceable to NIST (National Institute of Standards and Technology). This should be set by the manufacturer and can be tested independently with the purchase of a tile set.  

A calibrated gloss meter allows surface testing to match a range of industry standards, including AS 1580 (602.2, ASTM C584, ASTM D2457, ASTM D523, BS 3900-D5, DIN 67530, ISO 2813, ISO 7668, JIS Z 8741, MFT 30-064. 

Gloss meter for paints and coatings 

Looking for a gloss meter to measure your paints and coatings? Check out our highlighted product from one of our specialist testing brands TQC Sheen: 

Glossmeter – Sologloss & Polygloss 

With a large memory capability able to hold up to 2,000 readings, adjustable gloss limits with visual and acoustic alarm and a calibration gloss standard integrated in protective holder, this reliable gloss meter will help you test quickly and efficiently.  

We ensured the quality of our glossmeter by taking thousands of readings on certified substrates to test stability, reliability, and durability – so you can be sure it will meet your needs.  

TQC Sheen gloss meters and more from Industrial Physics

For help with all areas of paint, coatings and ink testing, look no further than Industrial Physics. Our specialist testing brand TQC Sheen is at the forefront of innovation in the field and our expert engineers are here to help you with everything from picking out the perfect glossmeter to kitting out an entire lab. Find out more about TQC Sheen