7021634: Printing onto Pre-Printed Forms Using Reflection for IBM

For best results, start with the instructions in the first section, titled “Initial Setup: Printing without Scaling,” and proceed as directed.

Note: If you have previously printed your form in a satisfactory manner, obtain a copy for reference purposes. A reference printout will greatly facilitate several important steps in this document.

Initial Setup: Printing Without Scaling

Follow the steps in this section to allow your host to control the size and format of your print job. These settings produce the best starting point in all cases, and in some cases may achieve an adequate printout without further adjustment.

  1. Start your Reflection printer session.
  2. On the File menu, select Page Setup, click Page Options, and then click Page Scaling. Select “No Scaling” in the Page Scaling dialog box, and then click OK to return to Page Options.
  3. In the Page Options dialog box, make sure the following settings are established:
    • Override host page format: Disabled (cleared-default)
    • Characters per line: Auto (default)
    • Lines per page: Auto (default)

Click OK to return to Page Setup.

  1. In the Page Setup dialog box, check the “Override the orientation specified by the host” checkbox, and then select the correct orientation for your form. If the form is taller than it is wide, select Portrait. If it is wider than it is tall, select Landscape.
  2. In the Page Setup dialog box, see the Paper Size drop-down menu to make sure you are using a paper size that matches the size of your form. See the section near the end of this note titled “Selecting a Paper Size” if you need more information on selecting a paper size.
  3. Click OK to return to your Reflection printer session window.

Test Print and Evaluation

Once you have configured the above settings, print the form. Depending on several factors, your printer session may or may not be successfully configured at this time. Follow the instructions in this section to evaluate your print job and determine any further configuration steps to follow.

If you have a reference printout, compare the size of the text on your current printout to the text on your reference printout as follows:

  1. Using a ruler, count the characters in a horizontal inch of text on both the current printout and the reference printout.
  2. Using a ruler, compare the vertical measurements between the same two lines of text on each printout.

Note: Do not measure from a line that appears particularly out of place relative to the rest of your printout. Compare lines that appear to be in good relative position on both printouts.

If you do not have a reference printout, use your best judgment to determine how well the text is sized and positioned to fit your form.

How well does your printout fit the form?

Adequately: You have successfully configured your print job if the text fits the form properly.

Closely: The size of the characters and the measurement between lines matches your reference printout. (If you have no reference copy, the characters on your current printout appear to be the right size for the fields on your form.) However, if the text still does not fit the form for either of the following reasons:

  • Near the margins, a few characters per line wrap up or down from where they should be located
  • The text does not align properly to the fields, but falls close to the fields (generally speaking, within three characters in width or two lines in height; but lines that wrap may fall farther from the fields)

Skip to the section titled “Minor Page Adjustments” to fine-tune your print job to fit the form.

Not at all: If any of the following conditions are true:

  • The character or line measurements differ significantly between the reference printout and your current printout
  • If you have no reference printout, the characters on your current printout appear to be an inappropriate size for the fields on your form
  • The entire printout appears to be an inappropriate size for your form

Proceed with next section, titled “Printing With Scaling,” to give Reflection control over the size and format of your print job.

Printing with Scaling

In this section, follow the steps in “Scaling Setup” to give Reflection control over the size and format of your print job, and then follow the instructions in “Adjusting Font Size with Characters Per Line and Lines Per Page” to re-size your print job to fit the form.

Setup for Printing with Scaling

  1. Start your Reflection printer session.
  2. On the File menu, select Page Setup, click Page Options, and then click Page Scaling. In the Page Scaling dialog box, select “Scale the page size specified by the host to fit on the Windows printer page.” Click OK to return to Page Options.
  3. In the Page Options dialog box, check the Override host page format checkbox. Click OK to return to Page Setup.
  4. In the Page Setup dialog box, uncheck Override the orientation specified by the host, and then select the correct orientation for your form. If the form is taller than it is wide, select Portrait. If it is wider than it is tall, select Landscape.
  5. In the Page Setup dialog box, see the Paper Size drop-down menu to make sure you are using a paper size that matches the size of your form. See the section near the end of this note titled “Selecting a Paper Size” if you need more information on selecting a paper size.

Adjusting Font Size with Characters per line and Lines per page

To manually re-size a printout, Reflection for IBM uses Characters per line and Lines per page settings. Used together, these settings control the font size of the printout. The Characters per line (CPL) setting controls the width of the font. The Lines per page (LPP) setting controls the height of the font. Lower values enlarge the font; higher values make the font smaller.

To enter values for Characters per line and Lines per page, click File, Page Setup, Page Options, and then select the manual entry fields in the Characters per line and Lines per page areas of the Page Options dialog box.

Use the instructions below to calculate or estimate the values you should enter. Once you have entered values for Characters per line and Lines per page, click OK twice to return to your printer session window, and try printing your form.

Calculating values for CPL and LPP

  • If you have a satisfactory reference printout of the form:

Set the CPL and LPP values to exactly match your reference printout. Refer to the tables below to calculate the CPL and LPP values of your reference printout.

  • If you do not have a satisfactory reference printout:

Use the printout from step 6 of “Printing without Scaling” as a reference. Calculate the CPL and LPP values of the printout, and then experiment with values that should re-size the text appropriately. This process may entail some trial and error. Refer to the tables below to calculate the CPL and LPP values of your printout.

    To Calculate the CPL Value
    Example (using 8.5″ X 11″ paper)
    1. Count the number of characters in a horizontal inch of text on your reference printout.
    10 characters per inch.


    2. Measure the entire width of the paper and subtract its left and right margins.
    8.5 inches minus two half-inch margins = 7.5 inches of text area width.
    3. Multiply the characters per inch by the width of the text area in inches.
    10 characters per inch times 7.5 inches = 75 characters per line.
    To Calculate the LPP Value
    Example (using 8.5″ X 11″ paper)
    1. Count the number of lines in a vertical inch of text.
    6 lines per inch.
    2. Measure the entire height of the page and subtract its top and bottom margins to determine the height of the text area.
    11 inches minus two half-inch margins = 10 inches of text area height.
    3. Multiply the characters per inch by the height of the text area in inches.
    6 characters per inch times 10 inches = 60 lines per page.

Note: To enlarge or reduce text proportionately using CPL and LPP adjustments, enter proportionate values in the Characters per line and Lines per page fields. This procedure can entail trial and error, depending on the dimensions of your form. In the best case scenario, you can adjust the text to be identical in point size to the text on your reference printout. When finished, you may also need to adjust the placement of the text on the page, or adjust the margins. If so, continue to the next section, titled “Minor Page Adjustments.”

Minor Page Adjustments

The techniques in this section will help you fine-tune your print job to fit the form. Follow the instructions under “Margin Adjustments” first. Proceed to the section titled “Paper Size Adjustments” only if needed.

Margin Adjustments

Using the Margins fields in the Page Setup dialog box, adjust the margins to re-position the text on your page. The two topics below detail several different ways to use margin adjustments

Note: You must enable the Override host page format setting in order to adjust the margins for your print job. To enable the setting, click File, Page Setup, Page Options, and then check the Override page format checkbox.

Moving Margins to Adjust for Wrap

  • If characters that should be on one line wrap down into the next line, decrease the right margin to widen the page.

Note: If the right margin value reaches zero you need more space for the text to fit properly, try decreasing the left margin as well. If you still need more space, see the next section, titled Paper Size Adjustments.

  • If characters that should be on one line wrap up into the previous line, increase the left and right margins equally to narrow the page.

Note: If the printout, when adjusted, is the wrong size for the form, see the section titled “Printing with Scaling” to give Reflection control over the size and format of your print job. If you arrived here from the “Printing with Scaling” section, return to “Adjusting Font Size with Characters per line and Lines per page,” and re-size the printout to better fit your form.

Moving Margins to Re-position the Entire Printout

  • To shift the entire printout to the left of the page, decrease the left margin.
  • To shift the entire printout to the right of the page, increase the left margin. Decrease the right margin if some characters begin to wrap down to the next line.
  • To shift the entire printout up the page, decrease the top margin.
  • To shift the entire printout down the page, increase the top margin. Decrease the bottom margin if lines begin to fall off the page.
  • Try combinations of margin adjustments as needed.

Note: If a margin value reaches zero and you need to move the margin a small amount farther for the text to fit properly, see the next section, titled Paper Size Adjustments. If the printout, when positioned properly, is the wrong size for the form, see the section titled “Printing with Scaling” to re-size your print job. If you arrived here from the “Printing with Scaling” section, return to “Adjusting Font Size with Characters per line and Lines per page,” and re-size the printout to better fit your form.

Paper Size Adjustments

In some cases, it may be possible to use a larger paper size to allow you to set the margins farther apart than your original paper size would allow. You may be able to either select a new paper size from a list of available paper sizes or create a custom paper size. Attachmate recommends trying to select an existing paper size first, because selecting a paper size is the more straightforward procedure. Both procedures entail some trial and error and may not be successful with some printers or print drivers.

Note: If you are unable to select or create a paper size that will help you configure your print job, see the section titled “Printing with Scaling” to give Reflection control over the size and format of your print job. If you arrived here from the “Printing with Scaling” section, return to “Adjusting Font Size with Characters per line and Lines per page,” and re-size the printout to better fit your form.

Selecting a Paper Size

In your Reflection printer session window, select File, click Page Setup, and then use the Paper Size drop-down menu in the Page Setup dialog box to select a paper size.

Note: Depending on your printer driver, the Paper Size drop-down menu may not include dimension information with the paper sizes listed. If you need dimension information for a paper size, select the printer and click File > Server Properties (in Windows XP/2000/NT) or right-click the printer and click Print Server Properties (in Windows 98). If you are unable to find a paper size that will help you to adjust your print job, you may be able to create a custom paper size. For information on creating a custom paper size, see the section titled “Creating a Custom Paper Size”.

Creating a Custom Paper Size

Below are instructions for creating a custom paper size in Windows XP, Windows 2000, Windows NT, and Windows 98.

Windows XP/2000/NT:

  1. Navigate to the Windows Control Panel and double-click Printers.
  2. In the Printers and Faxes window, click File and then select Server Properties.
  3. In the Print Server Properties dialog box, check Create a new form, and follow the instructions that appear below the checkbox. Leave the Printer Area Margins for your new form at zero.
  4. Click Save Form near the bottom of the Print Server Properties dialog box. The new paper size will be available in Reflection Page Setup, provided your printer supports it.

Windows 98:

  1. Double-click My Computer, and then double-click Printers.
  2. Right-click the printer you will use to print the form, and then select Properties.
  3. From the Printer Properties window, select the Paper tab.
  4. On the Paper tab, scroll to the far right end of the Paper Size menu, and then click on the Custom icon. The User-Defined Size dialog box will open.

Note: If no Custom icon is available in the Paper Size menu, your printer driver will not allow you to create a custom paper size.

  1. In the User-Defined Size dialog box, select the length and width dimensions for the size of your form.

Note: Pay attention to the units of measurement. (0.01 inches = hundredths of an inch. 0.1 millimeters = tenths of a millimeter.)

  1. After you click OK to save your custom paper size, it will be available in Reflection Page Setup, provided your printer supports paper of that size.

Adjusting Margins for a New Paper Size

When changing paper sizes, set the margins so that the text area on the new paper size initially has the same dimensions as the text area on the original paper size. Also, leave the left and top margins at their previous values so that the printout remains in the same location on the page.

For example, if your original paper size is Letter (8.5″ X 11″) and your left and right margins have reached zero, then your text area has a width of 8.5 inches. Switching to 9″ X 11″ paper, you would set the right margin to 0.5 inches to produce a text area of 8.5 inches in width. You can view these example dimensions in the chart below:

Original Paper Size

New Paper Size

Dimensions
8.5″ X 11″
Dimensions
9″ X 11″
Left Margin
0″
Left Margin
0″
Right Margin
0″
Right Margin
0.5″
Top Margin
0.5″
Top Margin
0.5″
Bottom Margin
0.5″
Bottom Margin
0.5″

From that starting point, you can expand the width of the text area by decreasing the right margin as needed. For detailed instructions on adjusting margins, return to the section above, titled “Margin Adjustments.”

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