When it comes to document output, unsatisfactory results are often chalked up to low toner, not enough of one color, improper alignment or paper jams. The fact is, a common reason for below par output is using the wrong paper for the job!

Let’s take a look at how using the right “weight” of paper stock can improve your output.

What Is Paper “Weight?”

Many people are not fully aware of the number of choices in paper stock. Each has its own use. Paper stock is categorized by its weight. The weight of paper is determined based on a standard size and quantity – for example, 500 sheets. It can become slightly complicated when you compare different sizes and quantities. For example, some types of paper use 1000 sheets as the standard measure.

Some Standard Paper Examples

The output and materials you produce will determine which stock is the right choice for your job, and your device. Here are some standard paper examples:

  • Bond – This is the standard paper used in everyday print and copy applications. Also known as writing paper it comes in weights of 16, 20, 24, 28, 32, and 36 pounds.
  • Text – Used in commercial applications, text paper is often used to print letterhead and stationery and comes in 50, 60, 70, 80, and 100-pound weights.
  • Cover Stock – Sometimes called card stock, this paper comes in a variety of colors and finishes. Typically used for postcards, invitations and business cards, weights range from 50 to 120 pounds.
  • Index Stock – Used for index cards. It’s stiff and comes in 90, 110, and 140-pound weights.
  • Tag Paper – Very durable, it’s typically used for signage and comes in 100 and 200-pound stock.

Printer Compatibility

When it comes to compatibility between printer and paper, one size does not fit all. Certain printers work better with certain types and weights of paper. Most manufacturers will include a recommended paper list with the device. If you use an inappropriate stock it can jam your machine or produce poor quality documents.

Taking the time to select the right kind of paper for your project and printer creates a superior end-result you can be proud of.