Need to print Excel spreadsheet so it turns out like a vertically-folded half-sheet card.
March 23, 2010 5:57 PM   Subscribe

Need to print Excel spreadsheet so it turns out like a vertically-folded half-sheet card.

I've got an Excel spreadsheet that spans about 1 1/2 full pages when printed in portrait mode. I basically want to make it so that there's about 1 inch or so of white space in the middle of the page so that you can fold it in half like a booklet.

I have a Mac and have tried the print layout settings that print 2 pages per sheet, however, it scales down the pages too much so there's way too much whitespace and the print is too small (because it divides up the worksheet into 8.5x" X 11x" proportion and scales it down to fit in an 8.5" X 5.5" space).

The only solution I can think of is inserting empty rows in my spreadsheet around where halfway down the page is, but is there a cleaner method in which you can somehow divide the 8.5" X 11" page into two halves and fill the halves with the contents of the worksheet?
posted by beammeup4 to Computers & Internet (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You could try creating a custom paper size, say 5" by 8.5" Set this as the paper size in excel, and then choose the print 2 per page option. You can also fiddle with page margins to get your space correct.
posted by fontophilic at 8:54 PM on March 23, 2010

But, if you're just doing a small number of pages, and won't need to print like this all the time, it may be much easier to just print to PDF, chop up the PDFs, and layout as needed in any other program.
posted by fontophilic at 8:56 PM on March 23, 2010

I second the PDF option. Excel's print options to force it to print to one page mess with the scaling so much, that trying to manually figure out the white spacing would be maddening! Do you have Photoshop or any graphics program? If this was my job, I would figure out how many rows need to go on each side of the fold and print each side to a separate PDF file. Then in Photoshop, I would setup a fullsize 8.5x11-inch page, set the white space in the middle, and insert and postion each PDF on the top/bottom. Remember when assembling this that you'll need to rotate one of the PDFs so that when you fold the print, the text is still facing up on both sides of the fold.

But if you don't have a graphics program, it will take a lot of manual fussing to get this to work in Excel. First you're going to have to downsize your font/columns/rows so that it will fit to less than one page to start with (because you need extra space for your fold). Then, like you said, you will have to add blank rows in the middle for the fold. BUT then the problem will be, when you fold the print, the text at the top of the page will be upside down...
posted by Eicats at 7:48 AM on March 24, 2010

Import into a Table in Word? Adjust as necessary.
posted by buttercup at 9:10 AM on March 24, 2010

oops- I just caught the "vertically-folded" spec. Duh. Well, that solves the problem of having to rotate to mitigate upside-down text. Buttercup might be on to something if the PDF option won't work—it would be easier to fiddle with spacing a table in Word than trying to change the print layout in Excel.
posted by Eicats at 11:14 AM on March 24, 2010

Response by poster: @fontophilic: tried that already but it still adds too much whitespace for some reason. you can't really scale it that much.

@buttercup: that's kind of a last resort because it'll mean doing a crapload of editing to resize the table in Word. Plus, it's a directory, so it would be more work if I wanted to edit it.
posted by beammeup4 at 2:28 PM on March 24, 2010

MS programs want to give you large spaces to make printing as idiot proof as possible. There used to be printers who couldn't print closer than a half inch from the edge. You most likely do not have one of these printers (if purchased in the last 5 years), but like websites still designed for 800x600, MS puts a large margin around everything.

Page margins are actually managed in 2 places (for extra fun!), You'll find program based "page setup" under file, and then within that, you'll see extra options, or system based printer page margins. Fiddle with these, system overrides program.
posted by fontophilic at 11:20 AM on March 25, 2010

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