Weighing packs frowned upon or no?

I come from the sports card hobby(Haven’t been here long) but, it has always been frowned upon to weigh or pack search to seek an advantage.

Why isn’t that the case with Pokémon cards?

This sums it up nicely.


It is frowned upon. I have worked with many sports card shop owners who have been in the industry for 20+ years. They all talk about it within sports cards, yet they all do it. With very few exceptions of course. It is the same in Pokemon, Magic, etc…

No matter what you buy. Buy from a trusted source or assume the risk.

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It is unethical. It is wrong (in most situations). I hope those that thought so five years ago (when all pack-weighing discussion was severely ridiculed on the forum) still think so now.

I have an article on the topic here: www.ludkinscollectables.com/blog/ethics-morals-and-trading-cards-the-normalization-of-pack-weighing

The tl;dr of the article is that while pack weighing is almost always unethical, there are certain situations where the lines are blurred. But in today’s optimized market era, as Scott points out, you have to assume all packs are weighed. It’s simply the reality whether you like it or not (I hate it). I agree with his point that businesses have to weigh packs because there’s no way to tell whether the people you got the packs from weighed them, and it’s unfair to your buyers if you’re selling light packs as unweighed. It’s one of those things where I wish we could “go back to the good old days” where it was much less prevalent, but things have changed and it’s not worth getting too worked up over.


I guess as long as it’s disclosed it’s okay. Just never agreed with actually weighing them. Set the box open on the counter (card shop) and let the buyers buy at their own risk.

I agree with @fourthstartcg, wholeheartedly here (excellent article write up too might I add!) in how in todays market, its just something that is more needed than actually desired by anyone. Smpratte’s video sums it up better as well, but if I could add my own opinion here, it would be that the market today is too optimized to be able to trust that packs which were sealed 20+ years ago now were not already weighed, which would then hurt both seller and buyer of said item down the road when looking to move the product. It only takes a few bad seeds to ruin a good thing, and sadly with the history of weighing packs to achieve pulling the best available cards, its more common than ever to happen due to just how large the market has become. A good example is how during the introduction of Hidden Fates in the past few months, I went looking to buy some for myself and in doing so, I came across at least 15-20 resealed and opened product in retail stores alone. If that kind of corruption could with modern product, it could also take place with older things in other ways similar, regardless if the seller of the product is trusted or not because whom ever had it prior could have already done something (in this case, weighing) to tarnish that true opening sealed product experience. Years ago, many people were still blind to the value (or potential value) pokemon had as an established card game/collectable, and now its been the largest grossing childrens (classification only, we all know its beyond that) franchise ever and people are aware of the value. You still get some who arent, but if one knows about the cards even a little bit, chances are they know what it could go for or if not, they could at the drop of a hat do some google searches and find an answer. That temptation would drive lots for ill profit practices, and as years go by and sealed product becomes less and less available, all signs point towards weighing as seller to protect buyers from the potential damage that someone else could have caused through the same practice.

Hopefully that all makes sense, and if not trust everyone else here and what they have to say. None of us want to weigh packs (I for one do not own any sealed product myself as im still reestablishing myself into collecting little by little) and I would hate to have to buy a “heavy” or “light” pack when looking for older product (again, down the road and in time) but at this point I would 1000x prefer to know if i decide to buy 10 packs of something and I get not a single holo rare that the reason i did was due what i purchased as opposed to what someone might have or could have done to the product.


I’m going to quote myself here, I got some good reception the first time I posted this so obviously there’s other people that agree with this


I got back into the hobby in 2016 and it has just been the standard and is all that I know. To me, it’s not a question of it being ethical or non-ethical, it’s just a matter of having common sense. With the very rare exception, I trust people weighing packs a heck of a lot more than someone who won’t do it.
I ran into a local listing about a year back where a guy was selling 18 1st edition Team Rocket packs in a opened booster box. He claimed them to be his son’s who had gone off to college and he was just getting rid of them. I informed him about weighing packs and he said he didn’t know about it and he also said that his weren’t. I told him I would buy all of them if he would weigh them OR I would be willing to pay a good price for just the heavy packs and he refused the offer. Red Flag
Going to the store and opening up packs/resealing packs is like going to Walmart and opening up a box of cereal and taking the toy. That’s wrong and I don’t know how you could justify that on any grounds. Luckily, ten card modern packs can’t be weighed (to my knowledge), and while there were some issues with being able to predict which pack would have your holo/ultra rare with some xy era booster boxes, that ended as well.

Weighing vintage packs isn’t comparable to any of those situations and just makes sense. The problem isn’t weighing, the problem is people lying about NOT weighing.
**For the record, I have not bought a vintage booster pack since 1999.**


Maybe just treat ALL packs like they’re weighed then you’ll never be disappointed?


I’ll just stick to singles lol

The simple act of putting a pack (that you own) on a scale has never been immoral or wrong. What is done with that information afterwards is what can make it wrong.

  1. Weighing packs you don’t own and buying only the heavy ones. This is stealing from unsuspecting buyers down the line who have had the intended odds diluted.

  2. Selling known weighed (light) packs as unweighed. Obviously same as above except a more direct line to the known buyer.


Some good reads in here. Thanks for the responses so far everyone!

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I’m always conflicted with this. Weighed packs, to me anyways, have become so prevalent because of the urge to open old WOTC product as of late. Everyone and their mother is weighing packs to open for them views. I would hope we reach a point soon where the cost of buying a pack and opening it becomes so great that we simply don’t see it anymore. However with YouTube and the thirst for WOTC openings, big YouTubers are going to run it into the ground. Or in this case, high above the clouds as far as price. People would then buy the packs/boxes for the actual pack/boxes and not the cards within. I don;t care about those opening and selling out the packs unweighted, like a tamper proof case or whatnot. But the market is so shady with weighed and unweighted now. Before any weighing was considered mischief. Now you have some legit people out there doing the right thing, but that makes more people interested. More people interested makes more people in the category of “I want this, but I can’t afford the premium price of legit sellers/e4 members” (People who are more likely to be trusted). Therefore more people turn to those who may be cheaper and get ripped off.

Overall I think this is a phase. We are seeing the turn from shade city, to some selling legit. But it makes for a confused market when finding one or the other. If packs do get to the point where it is strait up idiotic to open (as far as base set), then it will all be evened out. The packs will either all be bought up and opened, in the hands of those who won’t open, or simply out of demands supply.

All in all, I steer away from sealed product as of late so what do i know. :grin:


I’m going to approach this from a slightly different angle and would like to gather people thoughts.

Since December I have opened 4 booster boxes (fossil, neo destiny, base set 2 and neo genesis 1st edition) in front of a camera and placed each pack in a sealed sleeve and placed a tamper proof label on it that has a unique serial number. I have clearly showed the label to the camera for every single pack. I Have sold the packs as unweighed on ebay and facebook etc. In my adds is a link to the video of me opening whatever booster box is relevent to the pack I’m trying to sell and sealing the packs etc. You can see that pack or packs come out of the sealed box. Other than neo genesis they have sold very well, I have had feedback saying holo’s have been pulled etc and have been commended on selling truly unweighed packs.

Now my question is would I have been better off weighing the packs and selling them as heavy and light packs? Am I putting off potential customers by doing it this way?

I have never weighed packs, but have seen videos where heavy packs have ended up with no holo and supposed light packs have a holo. I’m not sure I would be comfortable selling them weighed as heavy or light if there was potential for a heavy pack to not contain a holo.

I’d love to hear some of your thoughts.

That’s why I wouldn’t advise selling weighed and unweighed. Unless you have vast experience with them IN ADDITION to vast base of potential buyers who trust your experience in their weight. Doing this and having a track record with your proof could be good enough to support some buyers in weighed and unweighed packs. Personally I would only consider it with Base Set, and a stretch to consider it for Jungle and Fossil. But it just comes off as shady to most people at first glance.

Someone who succeeds by this is TCA. But with him there is no doubt he knows his stuff and has had a long track record in doing so. If you are opening them with a live viewer base and packing them, initialing them, showing the # etc., I’m not sure what else you could do to prove they are random. That seems to be the best way to me as long as the buyers can select a specific serial number to purchase. Hate to shine light on a shady idea but you could mark them all up and post them on ebay, just to weigh them and send out the lightest one after zeroing the scale with the bag on it… Just so many factors that go into it to have the “perfect way” to do it though. However I’m also biased. I think they are perfect inside the sealed booster box.

tldr: Do it all LIVE and have the buyer purchase specific serial numbers after they are sealed. #TeamKeepEmSealed

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Selling heavy vs light is hard depending on the set. I think the “earlier” the set, the more clarity there is with weights. After Jungle it gets real tricky I think besides the most heavy packs. I would never trust someone claiming a pack as heavy unless very reputable. I have seen TCA open too many packs that he is unsure of as heavy or light in the later sets.


Or weighing them after they’re in their packages, and then only selling in the light serials?

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it was easy to differentiate the packs weight during wotc, but they have become quite clever with the various different weight game code cards in modern times, really not worth it. No need to figure out the science of something so insignificant.

So much effort, will develop bad reputation for supporting that genre of marketing

A few months ago I posted the following regarding the subject.

Some of them understand now. And some hold their perspective tight against logic and refuse to see objectively.

I don’t like the practice either, but decided to sell this way for multiple reasons.