How thick is printer paper?

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How thick is a single, 8.5" x 11" sheet of standard printer paper?

I saw this article on Cha Chathat said it was about nine millimeters, but that CAN'T be right!

How thick is a sheet of printer paper?

Edited by dstebbins

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Paper thin! lol I found it to be around .1 - .0254 mm

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Standard printer paper is approximately .1mm thick. For paper with a basis weight of 20 lbs, which is what I use in my printer, has a thickness of .097 mm. So you are right the Cha Cha answer does appear to be way off the mark.

For fun, I did a quick check. I measured a ream of unopened paper to have a height of about 4.6 cm. The ream contains 500 sheets of paper with a paper wrapping on the top and the bottom. Lets assume the paper wrapping in the same thickness as the actual printer paper. This would mean the ream has 502 sheets of paper in it. At a height of 4.6 cm or 46 mm, this would mean each piece of paper has a height of .0916 mm. Which for seems close enough to the wikipedia value for me to accept them both.

Edited by DJBruce

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A mil is not short for millimeter. A mil is one thousand of an inch or 0.001"

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Right Slider. The article says the thickness of paper is about 9 mil, not 9 millimeters. Nine mil is correct.

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What you do is you get a ream of paper, take note how many sheets are in the ream and then measure the thickness and divide by the number of sheets.

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A mil is not short for millimeter. A mil is one thousand of an inch or 0.001"

Love it SLIDER7W. Its been over 44 years since I studied any physics or math and I had forgotten that 1 mil is not 1 mm. Thanks for that wonderful reminder. It is quite helpful when dealing on-line where most folks use the terms interchangeably. But then a lot of those folks do not know the difference between to and too or then and than and gobs of other stuff, let alone math or physics things.

As you said 1 mil is 0.001" while 1 mm is 0.039370" or almost 40 times greater (thicker, in this case). Best regards, Murf (age 78)

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Another way to calculate it, is to start from the density, which for standard paper is about 1200 kg/m3.

Printer paper is typically about 80 g/m2.

0.08/1200 = 0.00007 m or 0.07 mm

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This does not help any more than the above post, just general interest. You could also start from basic principles and work out the dimensions: a sheet of area 1 square metre is A0, half that is A1, half again is A2 and so on. The ratio of sides is such that the shape does not change when cutting in half to get 2x A1 from an A0. You could then work out the dimensions of an A4 piece of paper (involving the fourth root of 2) hence the thickness at 80 g/m2. All this is extremely useful if ever you need an extremely small but accurate weight. This has absolutely nothing to do with a small pair of scales and cannabis.

Edit: I've just noticed the thread necromancy

Edited by DrKrettin

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This does not help any more than the above post, just general interest. You could also start from basic principles and work out the dimensions: a sheet of area 1 square metre is A0, half that is A1, half again is A2 and so on. The ratio of sides is such that the shape does not change when cutting in half to get 2x A1 from an A0. You could then work out the dimensions of an A4 piece of paper (involving the fourth root of 2) hence the thickness at 80 g/m2. All this is extremely useful if ever you need an extremely small but accurate weight. This has absolutely nothing to do with a small pair of scales and cannabis.

Edit: I've just noticed the thread necromancy

Even so, a forum like this is a source of knowledge and whether the conversation is current doesn't really matter. Any addition of information, like you've just done, will be useful for someone looking into the subject. I'm sure you have knowingly read long-finished conversations trying to find information.

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This does not help any more than the above post, just general interest. You could also start from basic principles and work out the dimensions: a sheet of area 1 square metre is A0, half that is A1, half again is A2 and so on. The ratio of sides is such that the shape does not change when cutting in half to get 2x A1 from an A0. You could then work out the dimensions of an A4 piece of paper (involving the fourth root of 2) hence the thickness at 80 g/m2. All this is extremely useful if ever you need an extremely small but accurate weight. This has absolutely nothing to do with a small pair of scales and cannabis.

Edit: I've just noticed the thread necromancy

Interesting idea.

For the record: this is absolute accuracy. The relative accuracy won't be that great.

Edited by Bender

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Today I learned...

A mil is not short for millimeter. A mil is one thousand of an inch or 0.001"

and that we should really switch to the metric system already.

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On 3/25/2011 at 6:18 PM, Slider7w said:

A mil is not short for millimeter. A mil is one thousand of an inch or 0.001"

After having worked in the auto repair industry since 1975, I have never heard a "thou" called a "mil".  Common engine components like spark plug gaps back in 1975 were spoken as 35 thou, 60 thou, but written as 0.035 or 0.060.   I have been lucky and managed to live in Canada and have avoided the metric system like the plague.  BTW, to be on topic, why not just use Vernier caliper.  Mine says 3 thou or 0.08 mm for a single sheet of 20lb bond, that has been in an air conditioned environment almost its whole life.

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On 4/20/2017 at 9:01 AM, DrKrettin said:

All this is extremely useful if ever you need an extremely small but accurate weight.

As long as you are at exactly the correct humidity.

Otherwise it gives you a small but approximate weight (well... mass)

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Just an educated guess_______ .007"

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