Tuesday, February 4, 2014

How to resize templates in a PDF for printing using Adobe Reader XI

Sometimes I want to print templates from a PDF and I want it to be of a different size. Adobe Reader XI does a decent job of reducing/enlarging templates. It can't give you a very precise reduction/enlargement but the result is quite close. Note that in previous versions of Adobe Reader, the print options may be different.

Here's a little how-to on how I enlarge/reduce templates from a PDF using Adobe Reader XI.

First, you need to know the % to enlarge or reduce.
To figure that out, you need 2 numbers - the width/height of the original template and the new width/height.
You can use either the width or the height but you must be consistent.

My formula is (a ÷ b) X 100%

a) To Enlarge - In the example below, I want to enlarge a 2" heart to a 5" heart.

Here is a 2" heart and a 5" star you can download. After downloading, open it in Adobe Reader XI so you can use it to try out the exercises below.

The Print options defaults to the last option you used. If you use a PDF created by me, to print at 100%, Select "Size" tab and click on "Actual Size".

To print at a custom scale which is kept to one page, click on Custom Scale, type in the percentage you want to enlarge/reduce and press "Tab" on your keyboard. Below, I have entered 250% (which I have calculated before) and that has enlarged my heart to roughly 5" wide.

b) To Reduce - In the example below, I want to reduce a 5" star to a 2" star.

In the example below, to reduce my star by 40%, I have clicked on Custom Scale, typed in 40 and tabbed away.

c) What happens when your new image goes beyond one page? In the example below, you can see this happening.

The solution is to use Poster option.

The Poster option is not very smart and you'll end up printing empty pages. Plus you need to assemble the image together using the "cut marks" and "labels". (Labels aren't important if your image is simple and easy to figure out)

Lastly, a word on previous versions of Adobe Reader.
Adobe Reader X does not have a "Custom Scale" in the Size option. You can enlarge or reduce using the Poster option.

In Adobe Reader 9 and before, the print options are totally different and I honestly can't remember what they are but you might be able to scale using the tiling options. Look for "%" - that's usually where you get to input your sizing.

Adobe Reader is a free software and you can download it here.


Linda said...

Thanks for the lesson, Jane!

Chris H said...

That looks so COMPLICATED!

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