Product Details: Weight, A Heavy Issue


It’s simple physics: more weight = higher costs. Doesn’t that make dollars and sense?

…No, we’re not talking about going on a diet here, folks. This post is about shipping weight.

Even before Newton discovered gravity through the drop of an apple, weight has always been an issue. How heavy something is determines the outcome of so many processes, especially the transport of an individual mass or group of masses (aka your order).

But this is not a blog about physics and it isn’t about weight conversions. As mentioned, shipping weight comes down to the cost calculated to transport an order from warehouse to doorstep/office.

The crazy thing about weights is that you would think it would be easy to understand. But it isn’t. And that is most unfortunate because weight is extremely important when it comes to shipping.

Anyone who has bought anything online knows that weight factors into shipping costs. So naturally it is crucial to get it right since it factors into the overall cost of purchasing a product(s). The distance from the warehouse where your order is packaged; the weight of the product; the weight of the package; a fee attached to dangerous goods; method of shipping (ground or air)…ALL of these are factors that affect company and customer.

An often overlooked aspect of this subject is the definition itself. “Weight” is such a broad term. Most of us do not work for industries directly related to transportation. Ask anyone on the street what the DOT does and you’re answered with another question, “What’s that?” And while we all use UPS and FedEx and DHL are we really familiar with weights and measures?


Shipping weight is usually found in the Product Details section. In this screen cap the size (net weight) is 13 oz. But that’s not the total weight, which weighs over a pound.  (CLICK TO ENLARGE)

There are three main terms or types of weight that customers may find useful in understanding on how shipping is calculated: net, tare, and gross.

The net weight is the weight of a product without the container and/or package; at the bottom of the can of Plexus (See Figure 1) you will see “Net Wt. 13.0 oz.”

Related to this weight—and a weight most people are not aware of—is the tare weight, which refers to the weight of the container and/or package. That’s right, what most people forget is that packing slips and bubble wrap and any kind of padding to protect the safe delivery of a product does, in fact, have weight. The bigger the box, the more it usually weighs.

Finally, the gross weight is another way of saying total weight (i.e. net weight +tare weight = gross weight). Orders are based on gross weight and calculated as such.


Figure 1 – Area on the aerosol can that identifies the net weight of Plexus.

We definitely don’t take weight lightly. Unfortunately, not all weights on our site are accurate. However, the best remedy for inaccuracy is due diligence. The SkyGeek team is on the look-out for the wrong weights. And you should be, too.

Please, if you find an error, don’t hesitate to email us at

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About Skylar

Woah! This is Skylar. I am THEE Sky Geek. I like planes, trains, and automobiles, but really just planes. I love aviation and anything related to it. If you shop on our site you will see my mug plastered throughout since I am the official mascot. I enjoy talking to Sandy, Otto, and Mach since they share my passion for flight. Researching for news and events and other information that affects our customers is what I can't wait to nose dive into. The sky's the limitless!