GSM = Grams per Square Meter. A measurement system more commonly seen in paper, but also seen in t-shirts, it measures the weight of the sheet (of fabric, paper, etc.), which will give you some indication of its thickness. It's the same sort of measurement system that is used in the US, but it caught up to the 20th century and uses metric
I think a Gildan #2000 is 180gsm, but I'm not sure. (I know 180-190 is pretty standard, so most likely equivalent to a 5.4-5.6 - for all my ribbing of imperial measurements, I often use them more than metric because I'm dealing with US suppliers more often than elsewhere, so I actually have a better idea of shirt weights in imperial than metric).
According to one site I looked at this actually varies by colour, but a white Gildan 2000 is 200gsm, a red/black is 205gsm, a white Gildan 5000 is 175gsm, and a red/black is 185gsm. So I was roughly on target with the above.
Probably about a 145 or something, but I don't know precisely.
Shirt weight only tells part of the story (namely the weight of the fabric). Quality is also determined by the type of knit, and the quality of the cotton used. AA's shirts are an unusually low weight, but the fabric is, as far as I know, a fairly high quality (their finishing is a lot more hit and miss however).
A cheap import may have the same shirt weight, but just be a crappy thin shirt. Likewise a heavy weight shirt could still be crappy because it uses a more unfinished cotton - being heavy isn't necessarily a sign of quality.
If you got a high resolution scan of the fabric they're using, you might get some idea of what their quality is like (if you know what to look for) - but really, if you want to know a manufacturer's quality you're going to have to look at an actual sample. Shirt weights give you very little to go on in terms of telling you the quality of a shirt. Shirt weights are more useful for indicating the end-use of the shirt - a thin shirt will be good in warm climates, as an undershirt, etc. whereas a thick shirt is going to be better in cool climates. Often fashion overrides the practicalities of climate, so that also needs to be taken into account.
GSM is a commmonly used scale for fabric weight used internationally. As stated before it means "grams per square meter". A meter is approx 39" so a piece of fabriic 39" x 39" so a piece that size of the fabric from a Gildan 2000 would weigh 210 grams.
In the USA we use a scale of # ounces per square yard. In the case of the 2000 the weight of a white fabric would be 5.9ounces and a colored fabric would be 6.1ounces
to further complicate things in canada they use a system of # ounces per linear yard. They define a linear yard as 36" long by 60" wide. In the case of the 2000 then the weight of a White fabric peice would be 9.8oz and a Colored fabric would be 10.1oz.
In GSM the 5000 is 175gsm and their new 64000 is 145gsm
I get this question every day about shirt quality... and I'm happy to say that the answer is no. Quality is not directly related to the weight of the shirt.
I'd say most customers think that the heavier shirts have better quality. I like to tell that this is not the case, and in fact the only difference may be that they might pay more and be hotter in the summer
So I personally like the lighter weight shirts... plus they are in style now. I used to be the heavier the better.
Thanks Christopher... I hate to say I've been slow updating it because I've been side tracked on a fun development project. I can't wait to release it and jump back into writing here in the next month.
Let me know if there are any topics you're interested in reading about, I'm always looking for new things to write.
Great Advice guys. I wish I had seen this thread earlier before I went and bought a whole load of t-shirts!!! Never mind hey as I'm sure ill sell them at some stage. Defo will refer back to this thread again.
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