# Could you weight a feather?

I have always heard the term “light as a feather” I thought I would ask the TM’s if its possible to weight a feather or a fleck of dust. If we could, what would the scales look like and what would they say?

“I’m the best there is Fats. Even if you beat me, I’m still the best.”
(Paul Newman in The Hustler)

I have weighed a feather, using an ordinary laboratory balance scale. Some of the more sophisticated scales can weigh dust, and have to be operated in a a vacuum in order not to be thrown off by stray particles.

The phrase “light as a feather” only indicates low weight, not no weight.

I’m glad to see that your questions have progressed away from digusting bodily functions and secretions…

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I have weighed a feather, using an ordinary laboratory balance scale. Some of the more sophisticated scales can weigh dust, and have to be operated in a a vacuum in order not to be thrown off by stray particles.
[/quote]

So what did the scale say the feather weighed?

See? There are a few redeeming qualities in us all.

“I’m the best there is Fats. Even if you beat me, I’m still the best.”
(Paul Newman in The Hustler)

In the lab, we regularly weigh at 4 decimal places (0.0001 g) and have equipment (for very acurate elemental analysis) which will weigh down to 6 decimal places (0.000001 g). To give you an idea, it’s hard to see whatever it is that weighs significantly less than about 100 micrograms.

I kept reading that literally and puzzling over what exactly the question was here, visualizing a fishing weight taped to a feather. Glad to find out it wasn’t such a heavy subject after all.

Ray (another load off my. . .uh. . .overtaxed (?) mind)

## ooopss thanks for pointing that out nano that should have been “Could you weigh a feather.”

“I’m the best there is Fats. Even if you beat me, I’m still the best.”
(Paul Newman in The Hustler)

Of course, if you didn’t happen to have a scale handy that can deal in the small weights involved, you could count out 100 feathers, weigh them with less sensitive instrument and then divide by 100.

Yes, you can weight a feather. Just attach a simple lead fishing weight to it.

hahaha ohhhh Handy you sooo mean… :mad:

“I’m the best there is Fats. Even if you beat me, I’m still the best.”
(Paul Newman in The Hustler)

I know that we have to live with our mistakes… but if I could persuade Nickrz or Manhattan to take that T from weight and change it to weigh… your T-bone steaks would be in the mail
Thankee either way

“I’m the best there is Fats. Even if you beat me, I’m still the best.”
(Paul Newman in The Hustler)

It’s been a long time, aha, so I don’t remember. If anybody out there in Straight Dope lab has access to a triple-beam scale, could you weigh a feather and let us know the results?

Sure Guy, a pound of feathers weighs as much as a pound of silver. Let me get back to you on what a pound of silver weighs.

handy: hmmmm…I seem to remember something like this from a long time ago - a brain puzzler or some such. Turns out that most precious metals weights are given in the Troy system, which is very different from the avoirdupois system. Which means that a pound of gold or silver weighs less than a pound of feathers!

Sure it was: ‘What weighs more a pound of gold or a pound of feathers?’

However, I said a pound of silver, a pound silver, pound sterling, not quite the same.

… from the Encyclopedia Britannica OnLine: “The troy grain, pennyweight, and ounce have been used since the Middle Ages to weigh gold, silver, and other precious metals.”