View Full Version : Postal Weigh Scales for Framed Photos

29-Nov-2015, 05:06
Hi, I'm looking to label and weigh my framed photos to ship through the major carriers. The general size of the framed photo is 16x24" on up. What are some good weigh machines/scales? Also, what works better, the tabletop weigh scales or the hanging luggage scales? Thanks.

29-Nov-2015, 05:48
Bathroom scales work pretty good... Just round it up to the next weight division...

Also, USPS post offices have scales accessible at night if the lobby is open... (If you are in the USA...)

Steve K

29-Nov-2015, 06:56
A reasonably accurate bathroom scale should be fine. It's very likely, with a package that size, that you'll be subject to "dimensional weight" (i.e. the shipper charges you more because of the size of the package). If you're in US, I've found that UPS and FedEx Ground are often cheaper than USPS for large packages (but not for anything less than 12"x12"x12").

30-Nov-2015, 03:47
Thank you LabRat and HMG for the reply and information. I didn't think of a bathroom scale. I think I have one at my house or if not I'm sure I can find a cheap one at a thrift store or something. I do live in the US and will be using a combination of the three major carriers.

30-Nov-2015, 06:51
For weighing things around my shop I bought a nice scale on Ebay for around $18. It's a flat grey plastic thing around 9 inches square, and weighs up to 86 pounds in small increments or in grams. I don't know what I did without it. Search postal scale 86lb.

2-Dec-2015, 19:16
Also, USPS post offices have scales accessible at night if the lobby is open... (If you are in the USA...)

In the weight range of a framed 16x20, the counter scales are probably out of the question, but the automated postage machines should be in range (even if you cancel out of the program after seeing the weight and cost).

However: I once received a small package with about $3.50 in postage due, on top of the $2.00 or so that the original mailer had put on it. It seems that the Post Office imposed a penalty for the sender's use of insufficient self-printed postage. When I received the package and weighed it on the brass counter scale, it weighed even more than the penalized amount (and no, it wasn't soaking wet...). At home I weighed it on two different chemical balances, and got essentially the original weight amount; I chose the brass scale weight closest to the package weight, and took that to work for weighing on a certified analytical balance---and it was dead on. The last word to the story is that when I described all this to the counter clerk, I was told the counter scales are not "legal for postage" even though they are supposed to be checked regularly! (This is presumably, but not necessarily, true of the automated postage machines.)

If you are into conspiracy theories, you could figure out for yourself how much free (i.e.--unearned) money the postal service would take in if they could add half ounce of spurious weight to every letter which would then exit the system with a full ounce of postage due...

Daniel Stone
2-Dec-2015, 20:29
Ebay has digital scales for cheap. (Most) bathroom scales are not designed to (accurately) weigh things under 25# or so. Even under #50 I'd be hesitant to use one to gauge shipping weights.


Sirius Glass
2-Dec-2015, 21:14
After one has safely packed the framed photograph, I found that the scales at USPS, UPS and FedEx can accurately estimate the shipping price with insurance. Those prices have closely tracked what I paid for the shipping.

10-Dec-2015, 07:26
Thanks for all for the helpful feedback. I went ahead and bought a Saga Digital Scale (86lb max) from eBay. It seems to work really good so far.