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toberino
26th Aug 2010, 06:16 am
Hey all,
I currently work for a utility engineering design firm where about 75% of our business is for a major gas and electric utility. We use that company's proprietary software for designing their utlilies. The output sizes for the page setups are hardcoded and cannot be changed. It is not like AutoCAD where the page sizes are given according to what pages sizes are enabled in the printer preferences. The page sizes available to us are 8-1/2x11, 11x17, 17x22, 22x34, and 36x60. As you can see they are all ANSI paper sizes except for the last one. We have a plotter that accepts paper sizes up to 42". We are using 36" paper. Now the problem is that when we try to print a 22x34 sheet size to a 36" roll we are having to cut 2" off of the paper to make the margins look correct. This seems like such a waste of paper and waste of time to do this especially when we have a large number of prints to produce.

The second option we have is to smart scale it to fit to 24x36 paper but it will throw off our scale. So that does not seem like a viable solution.

I am currently trying to convince my manager that we should start using a 34" roll and actually be able to plot a sheet without any other work involved other than folding the paper. I think that there would be a cost savings not only with the price of the roll but with labor hours as well.

I would like to get some opinions of other on this situation and also ask some questions about their standards.

What field are you in and what paper sizes do you use? ANSI or ARCH.
They way I see it is we are an engineering firm so we should be using engineering size paper. ANSI.

Is it common for an engineering firm to use ARCH size paper?
I am in the US and it seems that 34" rolls are harder to find. The major office supply stores only carry 24" and 36" rolls of the cheap stuff. We have found 34" rolls online that bring about a 35% cost savings.

If we do switch to 34" are there situations that may rise that we absolutely will need 36" paper?

Your opinions and comments are greatly appreciated.

ReMark
26th Aug 2010, 10:50 am
Maybe it's a plotter problem not a paper problem. Our plotter, which is rollfed too, will cut off the paper at the end of the sheet automatically. If the sheet length is 34" or 60" or 100 feet long it doesn't matter. There is no waste.

When I worked for a consulting engineering firm we used paper sizes of 8.5x11, 11x17, 18x24, 24x36 and on rare ocassions 36x42. It really bugged me when we worked with architectural firms that used 22x34 sheets and we had to combine drawings in one package.

toberino
26th Aug 2010, 04:25 pm
Maybe it's a plotter problem not a paper problem. Our plotter, which is rollfed too, will cut off the paper at the end of the sheet automatically. If the sheet length is 34" or 60" or 100 feet long it doesn't matter. There is no waste.

When I worked for a consulting engineering firm we used paper sizes of 8.5x11, 11x17, 18x24, 24x36 and on rare ocassions 36x42. It really bugged me when we worked with architectural firms that used 22x34 sheets and we had to combine drawings in one package.

hmm..so even though you were an engineering firm you were using ARCH wide format sizes?

I don't think it's a plotter problem because if we plot a 22x34 sheet to the 36" roll it will print at 22" on the 150' roll length direction but we are left with 2" of unused paper on the 36" direction that needs to be trimmed. So what we end up with is a plotted sheet that is 22x36.

ReMark
26th Aug 2010, 05:01 pm
What plotter/printer are you using?

Increase your sheet size to 24x36. No paper waste and you gain a few extra inches in the process.

toberino
26th Aug 2010, 05:04 pm
Hp Designjet 800

toberino
26th Aug 2010, 06:21 pm
If I increase the paper size to 24x36 and scale it to printable area then I lose my scale factor of the drawing.

ReMark
26th Aug 2010, 07:06 pm
No..physically. Move to a larger size drawing sheet. I did not mean to imply that you should scale the drawing to fit.

toberino
26th Aug 2010, 07:17 pm
The sheet sizes are hardcoded in the software as stated in my first post. The only options we have are ANSI sizes for layouts. Or I am not understating what you mean when you say a larger drawing sheet. When you say that I think you are saying to either increase the paper space page setup size (which cannot be done) or when you say "physically" I think you are saying to increase the size of the paper roll to something bigger than 36" which is opposite of what I would like to do.

OK. So we have established that scaling it to fit to 36" paper is not the answer.

ReMark
26th Aug 2010, 08:02 pm
Ah...hard coded options. Isn't that an oxymoron of sorts?

Yes. We have definitely established scaling the drawing is out of the question.

How about changing the origin of the plot such that the extra paper is mostly on the left hand side of the plot (for binding purposes) or that the extra paper gets distributed 1" extra on each side? Can you do that?

toberino
27th Aug 2010, 05:59 pm
How about changing the origin of the plot such that the extra paper is mostly on the left hand side of the plot (for binding purposes) or that the extra paper gets distributed 1" extra on each side? Can you do that?

That is a good question. I will have to play with the plotter settings to see if I can center the plot on the 36" direction.

ReMark
27th Aug 2010, 06:03 pm
I'd think you'd have two options. Plot to your normal scale but check off the "center the plot" option OR plot to your normal scale but change the X,Y plot offset (disable "center the plot").

toberino
29th Aug 2010, 09:12 pm
I would love to get some other opinions about the standards they practice in their office. Thank you.