Tipster C. Frank Kellogg shares a method for making sure your AutoCAD drawings print fully.
"I have way to make sure my whole title block gets printed — and that it prints where I want it on the paper. First, draw a rectangle of the actual paper size and orientation, starting at 0,0 in paper space, and on a nonplotting layer (please don't use defpoints just because that used to be the only layer that would not plot). Do not place anything outside this rectangle.
"Second, position your title block within this rectangle, allowing just enough blank border at the top, bottom, and right edges. You can see just how large that is (at least in AutoCAD 2004) by checking effective area in the partial plot preview. On large paper sizes that will get stapled together as a set; I leave about an extra inch on the left edge, so nothing important gets buried in the staples. The border lines are off-center to the right. On my 11 X 8-1/2 (landscape) or 17 X 11 title blocks, the margins are equal.
"When you prepare to plot, in either window select opposite corners of the nonprinting rectangle, or plot extents, at 1:1 (not scaled to fit) and centered on the page. I prefer to do a Page Setup command ahead of time, before any layouts are copied.
"AutoCAD will tell you that your plot exceeds the printable area of the printer, but you already knew that. Margins will show negative numbers, but that's OK, too. The values should always be the same; if they're not, you left something outside the rectangle.
"After the page is set up and saved, you can plot, layout, and not have to select the window or extents ever again — even if you do leave something outside the rectangle, like a large radius dimension (the center point counts)."
Notes from Cadalyst Tip Reviewer Brian Benton: Getting your drawings to print correctly is one of the most important aspects of a CAD user's job. Even if you create the most-perfect design ever, if you can't present that information to your client (typically in printed form), then your design is worthless. Printing is that important.
AutoCAD will show you in paper space (layout tabs) where your current printable area is, as determined by your printer settings. Open the Options window (type Options on the Command line) and go to the Display tab. In the bottom right area, Layout Elements, check the Display Printable Area box. AutoCAD will display a dashed line in paper space when you set up a printer. Inside the box is where you can show your drawing. If your printer settings change, the box will automatically adjust to fit.