Mudcat Café message #1713601 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #90377   Message #1713601
Posted By: JohnInKansas
09-Apr-06 - 04:50 AM
Thread Name: Tech: Epson print drivers a load of crap
Subject: RE: Tech: Epson print drivers a load of crap
Bert -

It's probably been at least 15 years since I've used Paint Shop Pro, but my recollection is that it did allow you to resize the "image" or resize the "canvas."

You don't want to change the image, which is the grid with the cards in it.

You can think of the "canvas" as the paper the picture is on. If you reduce the size of the "canvas," your "image" - the grid and cards - should stay unchanged but the margins will be reduced. If you then enlarge the canvas, with the added area all on one side, the same intact "grid with cards" should still be there, but off center so that the margin on one side is larger than on the other. Getting the right size margins often takes multiple steps, since you probably can only choose between "even additions both sides" or "all added on one side" at each step.

I can't guarantee that PSP allows you to do this; but I'd be surprised if it didn't. Sorry I can't give much help on where you'll find the adjustment (if it's there) on this program.

As previously stated, I've never met a stock template I could like very much. I'd probably just put a table in Word and set the table cell sizes to the card dimensions, and then twiddle with the margins to get the print to hit the right spot on the paper. My most recent bus cards were done in Word, using a table, printed both sides, on plain 8.5 x 11 "card stock." The front-to-back alignment isn't perfect, but I cut to the side that's "full to the edges" and leave enough margin on each card on the other side so that they don't look uneven.

I've done the same with Excel, leaving a blank column on each side and a blank row top and bottom. Twiddle the row heights and column widths of the blank rows/columns to get things aligned with the form.

Most home or small office printers don't actually do a really good job of sending consecutive sheets on exactly the same path through the machine, so there are practical limits to how accurately you can "hit" a bunch of little boxes on a form. Some printers allow you to choose whether to align the blank sheets to one side, or align them to the center. Often the center feed is intended for envelopes - but there's nothing wrong with having a "large envelope" that just doesn't happen to be folded up and looks like a standard sheet of paper, if it works better.

The large difference you're getting between margins on the two sides suggests that there may be a problem with how the paper is being fed in, although the same result often happens if the "form" you're printing on isn't exactly the standard page size. If the printer centers the image for an 8.5 inch wide page, and your page is only 8.0 inches wide, the image will be off center on the page. This could also result if the paper setting on the printer is for "metric" sheet sizes and the form is US "inch" size, or the other way around.

On some printers, you can tell the printer you're using a "custom sheet size" and within limits you can put any width you want in the settings. As long as the print head doesn't get hung up on the edge of the paper, you can "lie" about how wide the sheet is, and sometimes it will affect the centering of the image on the sheet if the actual sheet width is a bit different than what you told the printer it would be.

If the bus card perf forms are from a major supplier, and if you can find their website, you may be able to download a different template that's specifically for the problem printer, which may give a better alignment(?).

I'm sure speculating about better ways to do it isn't really too helpful for your immediate problem, but it may give you some ideas when you get back to your own printer.