ASTM D523 - 14

    Standard Test Method for Specular Gloss

    Active Standard ASTM D523 | Developed by Subcommittee: E12.03

    Book of Standards Volume: 06.01


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    Significance and Use

    5.1 Gloss is associated with the capacity of a surface to reflect more light in directions close to the specular than in others. Measurements by this test method correlate with visual observations of surface shininess made at roughly the corresponding angles.

    5.1.1 Measured gloss ratings by this test method are obtained by comparing the specular reflectance from the specimen to that from a black glass standard. Since specular reflectance depends also on the surface refractive index of the specimen, the measured gloss ratings change as the surface refractive index changes. In obtaining the visual gloss ratings, however, it is customary to compare the specular reflectances of two specimens having similar surface refractive indices.

    5.2 Other visual aspects of surface appearance, such as distinctness of reflected images, reflection haze, and texture, are frequently involved in the assessment of gloss (1), (6), (7). Test Method E430 includes techniques for the measurement of both distinctness-of-image gloss and reflection haze. Test Method D4039 provides an alternative procedure for measuring reflection haze.

    5.3 Little information about the relation of numerical-to-perceptual intervals of specular gloss has been published. However, in many applications the gloss scales of this test method have provided instrumental scaling of coated specimens that have agreed well with visual scaling (10).

    5.4 When specimens differing widely in perceived gloss or color, or both, are compared, nonlinearity may be encountered in the relationship between visual gloss difference ratings and instrumental gloss reading differences.

    1. Scope

    1.1 This test method covers the measurement of the specular gloss of nonmetallic specimens for glossmeter geometries of 60, 20, and 85° (1-7).2

    1.2 The values stated in inch-pound units are to be regarded as standard. The values given in parentheses are mathematical conversions to SI units that are provided for information only and are not considered standard.

    1.3 This standard does not purport to address all of the safety concerns, if any, associated with its use. It is the responsibility of the user of this standard to establish appropriate safety and health practices and determine the applicability of regulatory limitations prior to use.


    2. Referenced Documents (purchase separately) The documents listed below are referenced within the subject standard but are not provided as part of the standard.

    ASTM Standards

    D823 Practices for Producing Films of Uniform Thickness of Paint, Varnish, and Related Products on Test Panels

    D3964 Practice for Selection of Coating Specimens for Appearance Measurements

    D3980 Practice for Interlaboratory Testing of Paint and Related Materials

    D4039 Test Method for Reflection Haze of High-Gloss Surfaces

    E97 Method of Test for Directional Reflectance Factor, 45-Deg 0-Deg, of Opaque Specimens by Broad-Band Filter Reflectometry

    E430 Test Methods for Measurement of Gloss of High-Gloss Surfaces by Abridged Goniophotometry


    ICS Code

    ICS Number Code 83.140.01 (Rubber and plastic products in general)

    UNSPSC Code

    UNSPSC Code


    Referencing This Standard

    DOI: 10.1520/D0523

    ASTM International is a member of CrossRef.

    Citation Format

    ASTM D523-14, Standard Test Method for Specular Gloss, ASTM International, West Conshohocken, PA, 2014, www.astm.org

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