Twenty-pound paper is the favorite for everyday use in copiers and printers. Twenty pounds is the basis weight or the weight of 500 sheets of this paper the size of 17 inches by 22 inches.
The manufacturer cuts these 500 sheets into four letter-size (8 ½ inches by 11 inches) reams, weighing five pounds each. Reams of this paper are readily found in discount and office supply stores.
Twenty-pound paper is less expensive than heavier 24-pound bond paper. It is also less expensive to mail multiple sheets of paper printed on 20-pound stock than if 24-pound paper is used. A single 8-½ inch by 11-inch sheet of 20-pound paper weighs 0.16 ounces or 4.54 grams.
The symbol “#” is sometimes used to state paper weight. Thus “20#” means 20-pound paper.