Print big plans on small paper size

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Print big plans on small paper size

Very often plans of radio controlled model airplanes (especially 3D models from depron and EPP) are exported in PDF format and in very large paper size - A0 or A1. To print such plans as they are, you need to have in place a special printer or plotter which can handle such paper sizes. Obviously you can use printing services but this is more expensive than just printing using regular printer.

So what to do if you only have a printer that can print on A4 (letter) or A5 paper size, which are much smaller than A0 and A1 sizes? You are lucky if you have tiled plan already available and all you need to do is just to send to printer.

Unfortunately Acrobat Reader program which is the most widely used to open PDF files has no built-in support to split larger paper sizes to smaller. It can only zoom which is not what we want. Of course, there are specialized programs available, but usually they are not free. This simple instruction describes a quick and easy approach to split large plans into smaller formats using free software.

So, in order to get started, you need to install two free programs on your computer. Download software from the following sites:
• PDF-XChange Viewer -
• DoPDF -

We will not describe the installation process, since it is typical for programs for the Windows OSes.  PDF-XChange Viewer is a program for opening PDF file which has many additional features including some simple editing. We will use possibility to print the original document on smaller paper size. The second program from the list above, doPDF, allows you to save a tiled plan into a new PDF file for later use.

So, do the following after installation.
1. Open the file in PDF-XChange Viewer. We will demonstrate using plan of SharkBait airplane model.

PDF XChange Viewer

2. Select menu option File -> Print.

3. If you want to send your document to the printer, select it from the drop down box. If you want to save it to the new file, select doPDF instead of printer in appropriate box. Let’s consider you want to do the latter.

PDF XChange Viewer Print

You can open settings for the doPDF by clicking Options button. In the opened dialog you can specify some parameters, for example, paper size. Close the doPDF settings dialog when ready.

Select ‘Tile large pages’ in the section ‘Page Scaling’. Also you can specify overlap between pages. It is recommended to specify 0 so there will be no overlap. See the preview

Once ready click ‘Print’ button. In the next window select path where to save resulting file and click ‘OK’. That’s it you now have new file with original plan tiled to fit needed paper size.

doPDF Print

Here is the result:

PDF XChange Viewer Plan A4

After print you need to glue the pieces to get the original plan.


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