Test your tea scale with US pennies

I don’t know if this is common knowledge, but I read in a review on Amazon of a scale that US pennies with the shield on the reverse weigh 2.5 grams. I looked it up elsewhere to confirm. Other US pennies weigh different amounts, so be sure you’re using the right one.

I prefer 5g of tea per 12 ounces of water (sometimes 10oz), so testing my tea scale with 2 pennies works out great. Also, my Soehnle scale has a 2kg maximum with 1g accuracy up to 1kg, and 2g accuracy from 1-2kg. It’s not very sensitive between 0-5g. If I place 5g of pennies on it to get it going, I have a hunch it’ll do a better job of weighing out 5g of tea, giving a total mass of 10g.

I believe the “accepted” ratio of 2.25g tea per 6 ounces water comes from earlier times when a US coin called the half dime was common. It weighed 2.25g. Of course that coin is no longer in circulation.

For what it’s worth, I have one book which says the accepted ratio is 2.25g per 5oz.

3 Replies

Of course when I use a bowl to hold the tea on the scale, I tare it first. This starts off the scale around 100g, and it seems to do a better job of weighing 5g of tea.

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I actually use a US nickle – they weigh 5 grams. Saved me $10/whatever on the calibration weight as my AWS scale is calibrated by 5 grams.

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AllanK said

I have heard of this method but have never bothered to calibrate my scale. I guess I really don’t know if it is accurate. Can’t be too far off.

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