Printing Guide

These steps for printing assume the drawing to be printed was drawn full-scale (1:1).

Printing, Quick and Easy

To print a drawing without a drawing border / title block template or a specific scale is relatively quick and easy. With a drawing opened in LibreCAD:

  1. Select File -> Print Preview or click the Print Preview button icon02.

  2. Set or confirm the paper layout for the current drawing:

    1. Select Options -> Current Drawing Preferences.
    2. Set format as desired, e.g. A4, Landscape, and click OK.
    3. The page is represented by the shadowed rectangle in the print preview.
  3. Click the Fit to Page button icon05 on the toolbar. This ensure the drawing is scaled to fit and centered on the page.

  4. Select File -> Print or click the *Print button icon01.

  5. Select the printer on the Print dialogue and confirm the properties by clicking the Properties button. Adjust the properties if necessary and then click OK.

  6. Click the Print button.

Printing to Scale

To print a drawing without a drawing border / title block template but to a specific scale requires a couple of additional steps. With a drawing opened in LibreCAD:

  1. Select File -> Print Preview or click the Print Preview button icon02.

  2. Set or confirm the paper layout for the current drawing:

    1. Select Options -> Current Drawing Preferences.
    2. Set format as desired, e.g. A4, Landscape, and click OK.
    3. The page is represented by the shadowed rectangle in the print preview.
  3. Click the Fit to Page button icon05 on the tool bar. This establish the largest scale the can be used for the paper size defined in step 2 above.

  4. Select the desired scaled from the drop-down box on the toolbar.

  5. Click the Center to Page button icon04 from the toolbar.

  6. The drawing can be re-positioned on the page by moving the page behind the drawing. Click and hold anywhere in the drawing space and drag the paper to the desired position. Pressing [Shift] allows only horizontal movements of paper and pressing [Ctrl] allows only vertical movements.

  7. Select File -> Print or click the Print button icon01.

  8. Select the printer on the Print dialogue and confirm the properties by clicking the Properties button. Adjust the properties if necessary and then click OK.

  9. Click the Print button.

Printing to Scale with Dimensions

Important

For a drawing drawn full scale (1:1) with dimensions, the size of dimensioning features needs to be adjusted for the print output. These sizes will depend on the desired scale of the print output. If they are not adjusted then the defined text size will apply and it may not be appropriate for large or small scale drawings.

Once the printing scale is defined (see previous section), the size of dimensions can be adjusted in Drawing Preferences with the parameter General Scale. It is recommended to enter the printing scale number as input value for General Scale (i.e. 50 for a printing scale of 1:50). Since the printing scale of the drawing is 1:50, the dimension General Scale is 50 and the default text size is 2.5 mm, the printing size of the dimension text will be : 1/50 * 50 *2.5 = 2.5 mm.

Note

The size of annotations, which are not dimensions, cannot be modified through Dimension Drawing Preferences. So it has to be adjusted with the same factor using Tools -> Modify -> Properties.

It is recommended to check that the final appearance of dimensioning features for the print output suits your need.

Printing to Scale with a Border and Title Block

To print a drawing with a drawing border / title block template, but to a specific scale requires several steps:

  • Starts with a drawing drawn full scale (1:1),
  • Select the paper size for the print and adjust the drawing scale to suit,
  • Insert the page border and title block,
  • Print.

Specifically, the process is as follows. Starting with a full-scale (1:1) drawing:

  1. Open the drawing file to be printed and select File -> Print Preview or click the Print Preview button icon02. The page is represented by the shadowed rectangle in the print preview. Zoom out if necessary.

  2. Set or confirm the paper layout for the current drawing:

    1. Select Options -> Current Drawing Preferences.
    2. Set format as desired, e.g. A4, Landscape, and click OK.
  3. To establish the largest scale the can be used for the paper size:

    1. Click the Fit to Page button icon05 on the tool bar and note the drawing scale shown in the drop-down box on the toolbar. The is the largest scale that can be used for the current paper size.
    2. Adjust the scale to ensure the drawing will fit on the printed page and accommodate a border that will be added in a later step. For example, if the Fit to Page ration is 1:1.5, adjust the ration to 1:2.
    3. Fix the scale by clicking the Fixed checkbox.
    4. Close Print Preview (click the Print Preview button icon01 ) and return to the drawing window.
  4. Add the border and title block around the original drawing:

    1. Draw lines defining the page perimeter, e.g. draw a rectangle 297 mm x 210 mm for an A4 paper.
    2. Draw lines for a page border offset from the perimeter line drawn above.
    3. Or, insert a border / title block from the Library (predefined borders are in the sheets directory for ISO paper sizes) and scale it using the ration determined above, e.g for a 1:2 ration, scale the border by 2. Note: Setting the Scale Factor when inserting a block didn’t work for me, but the block can be scaled after inserting by using Scale (Tools -> Modify -> Scale).
  5. Re-confirm the layout in the Print Preview:

    1. Click the Print Preview button icon02.
    2. Reset the scale to the ration determined in step 3b, i.e. 1:2.
    3. Click the Center to Page button icon04.
  6. Select File -> Print or click the Print button icon01.

  7. Select the printer on the Print dialogue and confirm the properties by clicking the Properties button. Adjust the properties if necessary and then click OK.

  8. Click the Print button icon01.

Tiled Printing

To print a drawing to the specific scale that greater than an available paper, use so-called “tiled printing”. In this case, the drawing is outputted in parts that can be glued together to get the original drawing. With a drawing opened in LibreCAD:

  1. Select File -> Print Preview or click the Print Preview button icon02.

  2. Set or confirm the paper layout for the current drawing:

    1. Select Options -> Current Drawing Preferences.
    2. Set format as desired, e.g. A4, Landscape, and click OK.
    3. The page is represented by the shadowed rectangle in the print preview.
  3. Select the desired scale from the drop-down box on the toolbar.

  4. Click the Calculate number of pages… button icon07 from the toolbar. In print preview will be shown the multiple pages placed side by side and the drawing in the center of it. Note: Number of pages may be changed through Options -> Current Drawing Preferences on Paper tab.

  5. The drawing can be re-positioned on the pages by moving the pages behind the drawing. Click and hold anywhere in the drawing space and drag the paper to the desired position. Pressing [Shift] allows only horizontal movements of paper and pressing [Ctrl] allows only vertical movements.

  6. Select File -> Print or click the Print button icon01.

  7. Select the printer on the Print dialogue and confirm the properties by clicking the Properties button. Adjust the properties if necessary and then click OK.

  8. Click the Print button.

In case when a page has the margins (margins > 0) the print preview takes on a special look. Namely the margins between a neighbor pages aren’t shown. It makes possible to represent the printable areas of all pages as one whole area and to show an undivided drawing. Or in other words, the print preview looks like the drawing was outputted and glued together without excess margins.

Next example shows the print preview (left) and the output of tiled printing with the margins (right):

Tiled print preview and output

The sequence of the output is from bottom left page to top right page. In the picture above the order of the output is marked by numbers.