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Platform scales: Sizes, capacities and trade approvals explained

Platform scales: Sizes, capacities and trade approvals explained

Platform scales are essential for any business where large quantities of goods are shipped to and from a warehouse. In fact, we recently wrote this blog post about why you would need to use platform scales.

We’ve put together a buyer’s guide for you if you’re considering purchasing a platform scale for your business.

Our platform scales come in various sizes (1000mmx1000mm being the smallest size, 1500mmx1500mm the largest - 1200mmx1200mm the most popular choice) and with a number of indicator and capacity options. The information below should help you make your decision if you’re new to the terminology used in weighing scales - or anything with industrial applications really!

Trade approved

You’ll see the words ‘trade approved’ and ‘non trade approved’ mentioned all over the industrial product pages of this website. Whether you choose trade approved or not will depend on how you’re going to use your platform scale.

The law says: if an invoice or charge has been raised based on the weight of the goods, the scales must be trade approved.

Trade approved platform scales have to be certified as trade approved before we can sell them to you; this is after a lengthy testing process that ensures the scale is not affected by temperature changes or outside interference - for example, from mobile phones. The result is a weighing scale that will give a completely accurate reading, resulting in an accurate price for the goods.

For simple check weighing, a non approved platform scale will suffice.

In our range, trade approved platform scales include the letters ‘APP’ in the product name.

IP rating

Some of the platform scales in our range will have an IP rating mentioned - the picture on the left is a good example.

IP rating applies to any industrial scale that’s built to withstand moisture - the higher the IP rating, the more ‘waterproof’ the weighing scale is.

The highest IP rating you will find in our platform scales range is IP67, which means these products can be washed down, and also withstand humid or dusty environments. Lower IP65-rated scales will withstand humid environments and being cleaned with a damp cloth - but their tolerance of water will be less great.

You’ll also notice that an IP rating is often given for both the platform and the indicator - sometimes, a waterproof indicator may not be necessary but the platform needs to be waterproof - and vice versa. You’ll need to think about how you’re going to use your platform scale before you make your decision.

If the scale or the indicator doesn’t have an IP rating, try not to get it wet if you can!


There are a number of options available for platform scale indicators, again depending on what you’ll be using your indicator for.

The options you’ll find in our range are:

I-100: Our standard, plastic-cased indicator and the cheapest option for platform scales. As well as displaying weight, this indicator also has tare, preset tare and zero functions, and has a rechargeable battery (so you won’t need to situate the indicator close to the nearest mains point). The I-100 is a bench-mounted indicator.

I-100SS: A stainless steel version of the I-100 above. Having a stainless steel casing means the I-100SS is splashproof, and boasts an IP65 rating. This indicator comes with a bracket so that it can be wall-mounted.

I-200: Similar in its functions to the I-100SS, the I-200 however is IP67-rated, so much more durable in harsh environments. This indicator also comes with a bracket so that it can be wall-mounted.

JIK: A highly versatile, stainless steel check weighing digital indicator. It’s IP67 rated casing makes it the most waterproof option available, and features including parts counting, zero, tare, preset tare and a second scale input (so you can hook up two platform scales to it!). A wall bracket is included. The JIK also has an RS-232 output to link it to a PC, printer or remote display. One of its most popular features, however, is the optional output relay board. See the full range of features here.

DI-620P: The DI-620P indicator is unique from the others we supply with platform scales in that it has an in-built tally roll printer - ideal if you want instant print-outs of weights without having to hook up an external printer. This indicator is trade approved, too, and has an RS-232 port to link it to a PC, printer or remote display. See the DI-620P described here.

Capacities and graduations

Which capacities and graduations you choose will, again, depend on what you’re using a platform scale for. Typically, our scales have four, one tonne load cells in them - meaning they’re capable of upto 4000kg weights. However, we recommend acknowledging a weight limit of 3000kg, just to be on the safe side! This kind of weight capacity should be more than adequate for almost all applications, however.

Graduations indicate how accurate the platform scale is - for example, graduations of 1kg means the scale is accurate to the nearest 1kg. But, as you’ll notice when you browse our platform scales, the more accurate the scale, the lower its capacity.

If you’re looking for a platform scale for your business - or any industrial scale for that matter - and there’s something you’re unsure about that we’ve not covered above - just get in touch! We’re happy to chat platform scales on 0845 130 7330, or via the form on our contact page.