The Top mistakes most Legal for Trade Scale Buyers Make
As you may know, there are many applications that require the utilization of a Legal for Trade (LFT) digital scale, such as a deli, meat market, farmers market, bulk candy, retail packaging, restaurant, hardware store, bulk coffee, road side stands and many more.
Unfortunately, the biggest mistake that most LFT digital scale buyers make is they simply do NOT know which digital scale features they need for their LFT application.
In order to make your digital scale selection FAST & Successful, we have provided you with the following “LFT Digital Scale Checklist”. Simply use this check list to determine which scale features you need for your special application.
2. TARE Feature
3. Capacity vs. Accuracy
4. AC/DC – Battery and/or 220V
5. Spill Protection
6. Weighing Units (lb, oz, kg, g)
7. Removable Platform
8. Government Requirements
9. Pricing Computing
10. Printer Option
11. Dual Display
12. Manufacturers’ Warranty
One of the higher priorities you should note is the scale’s dimensions and platform size. Are you placing the LFT scale on a counter with limited space? Are you weighing big & bulky items? This is why your scale’s platform size is also an important feature.
You simply need to select a scale size that meets your unique LFT application.
Most digital scales have a valuable feature called TARE. This feature simply removes the weight of any item placed on the platform. You can use this feature to increase the size of the platform and/or place items in a container, and then obtain the exact weight of the items.
Example: Place your container (i.e. box, bowl, cup, etc.) on the scale’s platform that will hold the item(s), then push the TARE button. Your scale’s display will reset to 0 by subtracting the weight of the container. Then simply place the item(s) in the container and your scale will display the actual weight of the item(s) in the container.
If you need to weigh additional items in the same container, you can simply keep pressing the Tare button to reset the scale’s display to zero and then add the next item.
CAPACITY vs. ACCURACY
Before you purchase any scale, you will need to answer the following two (2) questions:
1. What is the maximum amount that you will ever need to weigh ( i.e. 15 kg , 30 kg)?
2. What is the minimum increment (i.e. smallest amount) you will measure (i.e. 5 gr or 10 gr, etc.)?
Once you have determined this information, you will simply need to select a scale that meets your capacity and accuracy requirements.
AC/DC – BATTERY and/or 220V POWER
Most LFT digital scales are powered 220V Power and some models offer both 220V power and a battery power option. The battery operated scales can be used in areas that do not have easy access to power, such as a farmers market or roadside stand.
Will your scale be weighing liquid, powder, or wet substances? If so, we recommend that you purchase a unit with a sealed display and user buttons. This simple spill protection will prevent the substances from leaking into the electronics and voiding the manufacturer’s warranties.
WEIGHING Units (lb, oz, kg, g)
Many scales offer both weighing units – pounds/ounces and kilogram/grams. However, you need to make sure that the scale has the weighing units you need for your LFT application.
Some scales offer a removable Stainless Steel, which allows for FAST & EASY clean-up. If you plan to weigh items that will cause a mess if spilled, then you may wish to consider a scale with a removable platform.
Depending on your local government’s requirement, you may need to invest in a scale that has been approved for use in retail trade. In South Africa, a scale that has been SABS ( SANAS ) approved under the Trade Metrology Act , will mostly likely be legal for trade. You should check with your local authorities to determine what requirements and/or approvals your scale may need to be legal for trade.
If you require a retail scale to display both the weight and the “price” of the product, then you need a price computing scale. This type of scale will automatically calculate the total price of an item by multiplying the weight and the imputed value per pound (or other weight unit).
One kilogramme of jelly beans cost R10. If a buyer orders 2 kilogrammes of jelly beans, the price computing scale would automatically calculate their order for a total of R 20.
If you are looking to use a retail scale in conjunction with a cash register, you may need to order a printer that works with the retail scale. This type of scale can print a price label to be affixed to the weighed goods and/or be intergraded to a retail system to produce a complete receipt for the sales of the weighed goods and other items.
Since this type of printer and retail scale integration will most likely require professional installation and maintenance, you should contact a local scale retailer for sales and service information.
This retail scale option allows BOTH the “buyer” and the “retail operator” to see the total weight of the product on the scale (i.e. a display is located on the front and rear of the scale). If your LFT application does not involve customer interaction, then a LFT scale with one display will work and save you money.
You will discover most manufacturers offer at least a one (1) year warranty. In addition, you will find some who offer 2-5 year warranties.
SPECIAL NOTICE: We highly recommend you AVOID any scale manufacturer that offers a so-called “lifetime warranty”.
As you know, common sense says… “If it sounds too good to be true – it probably is”.
Use your checklist to determine what features are most important to YOU. The price of your LFT scale will be directly related to the features you select.
Now that you have completed your “LFT Scale Checklist”, you will be able to avoid making any mistakes when selecting the BEST scale for your special application!
Baseline Scales suppliers and distributors of digital scales and digital check weighing scales across South Africa.