Anyone know a good source for Calibration Weights?

Discussion in 'Coin Chat' started by JeffC, Jun 2, 2020.

  1. JeffC

    JeffC Well-Known Member

    Hi everyone. May I ask where you buy your calibration weights? I've got one of those mass marketed digital coin scales. It's served me well but it's been two years and I'd like to calibrate it. So I'm looking to buy those tiny calibration weights. They come in a set comprising 1g, 5g, 10g, etc., that you pick up with tweezers. My hesitation is that if I buy them from "anyone," they may not be up to snuff. Who wants to calibrate a scale using weights that have little to no QA/QC to back them up. Is there some sort of certification that I should look for? Just wondering what your experiences have been and if you've got any tips. Thanks! (I suppose I can always calibrate the scale using a 5g weight and then - to test the reliability - weigh the 10g weight to see if the display reads 10g.)
     
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  3. Paddy54

    Paddy54 Variety Collector

    They are called< standards> I'm sure you Google that you'll find what you'r looking for..
     
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  4. Danomite

    Danomite What do you say uh-huh Supporter

    Standards are a common ammunition reloading suppliers item. Just make sure you order grams not grains.
     
  5. JeffC

    JeffC Well-Known Member

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  6. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

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  7. JeffC

    JeffC Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the link. Because I noticed that these are sold everywhere and some quite cheaply, I wondered how good some of these are. I don't want to buy standards that are cheaply made (not accurate) and then end up calibrating my scale incorrectly. Thus I was wondering if some of these standards or calibration weights come with certifications.
     
  8. desertgem

    desertgem MODERATOR Senior Errer Collecktor Moderator

    Well, you can get something like this but rather expensive,
    https://www.scalesgalore.co/Rice_lake_Test_Weights_SS_500G_Metric_Sets.cfm

    They may have individual weights , didn't check. Usually any small % variation of a calibration weight will not make any difference with coinage. What I do is to take my calibration weight to my college lab and have them weighed on a 00.001 gram balance every couple of years after I change the battery in the scale. If you don't have a college near by, a pharmacy or a jeweler ( as their products have to have a precise number) may be able to tell you the actual weight.

    Jim
     
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  9. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    Yeah, my cheapo scale requires a 200.00 g calibration weight. I just took a clean widemouth bottle and put it and the lid on a balance that weighed to 0.0000 g. I then added table salt very carefully until I had it fluctuation on the last digit, volia my calibration weight.
     
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  10. Danomite

    Danomite What do you say uh-huh Supporter

    You can buy a digital powder scale, accurate within 1/10 of a grain ( approx.006 grams ) with the standard for less than $50.00. They are extremely accurate due to the liability. Most will show grams.
    Edit: added info.
     
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  11. fretboard

    fretboard Defender of Old Coinage!

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  12. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Make sure the lid seals very tightly. Over time salt will absorb moisture out of the air and become heavier.

    Calabrating with a weight that can vary +/- .19 grams isn't a very precise calabration.
     
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  13. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Derp, derp, derp!

    Too dependent on humidity?
     
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  14. CoinCorgi

    CoinCorgi Derp, derp, derp!

    40 nickels is a good 200g calibration weight.
     
  15. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    Accepted. Should have used sand.
     
  16. Paddy54

    Paddy54 Variety Collector

    Correct...but in the food business they are called standards,as most states have a tech come in and make sure the scale is correct.
    These of course were larger weight's to see if the scale is true.
    It's a state run agency called( weight's and measures. )
    They also measure the gas stations to make sure that what is in the jug is the same measure on the pump.
     
  17. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    Great Guy, 1936 James Cagney film, Cagney plays an honest inspector in the New York Department of Weights and Measures exposing organized corruption.

     
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  18. JeffC

    JeffC Well-Known Member

    Out of curiousity, how often to they send inspectors down to your store?
     
  19. Conder101

    Conder101 Numismatist

    I think in most states it's once per year and then unless there are complaints they may not come back til the next year, or they may do a random anonymous test by ordering something and then checking what they got against their scales and if they match you may never know about it.
     
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  20. Lev99

    Lev99 New Member

    I just bought a scale and had similar question as my scale wouldn’t balance and I needed to recalibrate. McMaster-Carr I read around on the forums is good for uniform weights. The issue is tolerances. A nickel or penny has tolerances larger than what some scale need for calibration. My scale went to 0.00 grams so I needed something very uniform and coins weren’t near uniform enough.

    I was going to buy a set of weights but one of the reloading forums mentioned using a copper jacketed bullet (Bullet only and not the cartridge case) as they are very uniform in weight. Fortunately I knew someone that reloaded and they hooked me up with some match grade jacketed bullets very uniform and I was able to calibrate.

    Hth. Good luck!
     
  21. Kentucky

    Kentucky Supporter! Supporter

    Worked in and around labs for almost 60 years. One of the guys who would come in to check our balances would first pop a nickel on to see if it was close to 5 g and then a dollar bill to see if it was close to 1 g. That's just a fast and rough check. One guy would check our thermal balance with his business card to see how much weight it would lose upon heating.
     
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