Converting Pounds to GSM for Your Overseas Printing Project

Updated: Feb 28

Scale Converting Pounds to GSM

Printing your custom products overseas could give you the extra boost you need to enhance your brand. We've laid out a few reasons why here. But when you move things overseas, some of the measurements, terminology, and other details may look a bit different.

Outside the U.S., most other countries use the metric system of measurement, so you'll need to make some simple conversions to match the construction of your product. Here is one you'll need to keep in mind if you want to print a paper product overseas.

Paper Measurements

In the States, it is typical to calculate paper thickness in pounds (lb.). Notebooks, planners, and journals most often utilize 70 lb. paper. The measurement denotes the weight of the paper if one were to weigh 500 sheets (a ream) of a particular paper. This measurement is only used in the U.S., however, so those that follow the metric system measure another way.

Grams per Square (GSM)

When moving your manufacturing overseas, you would need to convert your measurements to grams per square meter (GSM), which, of course, follows the metric system. An equivalent for the standard 70 lb. paper is 100 GSM paper. GSM is measured by cutting a sample sheet to one square meter in size. No matter the length or width the paper is produced in, the weight measurement is always taken from the square meter sheet.


The conversions from lb. to GSM and vice versa are fairly straightforward. For the former, multiply the weight in pounds (lb.) by 1.4802 to determine its equivalent GSM. For the latter, multiply the number of GSM by 0.6756 to obtain its equivalent in pounds. There are also many helpful charts and conversion tools available in various places online, but these formulas will get the job done.


If you're ready to create brand-developing products and enjoy the savings found in doing so overseas, CōDRA is the collaborative partner you need. Contact us here.

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