Printing orientation problems

I use a HP 500 plotter with this .pc3 file: HP Designjet 500 42_HPGL2 Card.pc3. I have not completely transitioned from AutoCAD to Bricscad and still have AutoCAD set up on my old computer. I print on two sizes of paper - 24 X 36 and 30 X 42. Using Bricscad, I am unable to print to this plotter with the correct orientation in the 24 X 36 sheet size.

Please see attached files. The PDF file illustrates the problem. With AutoCAD, I can print a 24 X 36 sheet in the correct orientation using the full 36 inches of paper and 24" of the roll vertically. In Bricscad, the program insists on printing the sheet vertically, thereby wasting 12" of paper each time and requiring the paper to be trimmed. The next two files illustrate the print dialog boxes in AutoCAD and Bricscad. If you look carefully at the paper sizes, you will see AutoCAD offers two paper sizes-Oversize Arch D -portrait and landscape. Bricscad only offers one Oversize Arch D paper size- no distinction between portrait and landscape. Both programs are using the same exact .pc3 file. The preview in Bricscad is the last file I've included which seems to indicate I'll get the desired print result but the orientation is rotated when printing occurs.

I have tried every trick I can think of to get Bricscad to print in the desired orientation with no success. It prints as shown in the pdf file every time. Obviously, this is not going to work for me.

Would appreciate any suggestions. Thank you.


  • Anthony Apostolaros
    edited April 2020

    @BillD said:
    ... still have AutoCAD set up on my old computer. ...

    Perhaps the printer is set up differently on your old computer?
    I think the list of paper sizes comes entirely from the printer's software.
    I get the same list of paper sizes for a given printer in any app -- Bricscad, Autocad, Notepad, Firefox, etc.
    But I only have one computer, so in my case there can't be any difference in the printer driver.
    You might check and see whether your old computer shows the same list of paper sizes in Notepad.

    It should be possible to do what you want regardless of any printer driver discrepancy. I can't say how, because I don't have that printer installed. Also, I never print directly to a printer. I always print to a PDF file and send that to the printer, because I always want soft copy too, and because the PDF file gives me another chance to check everything. But you can file a support request ( and I'm sure they'll know what the problem is and will help you right away.

  • Thanks Anthony. Regarding the Notepad suggestion - Can you open a .pc3 file in Notepad? Otherwise, not sure exactly how to do the Notepad thing. I have thought of doing a pdf first but that's not normally the way I work. Being old fashioned, I need to check things on paper. But at least that might solve the orientation problem. I will likely end up doing a support request so appreciate that suggestion.

  • The application, the printer driver, and the printer itself all have to agree on the page orientation, and it seems there are innumerable ways it can fail. I know it has gotten better over the years, but to whoever it is happening, it can be a big issue.

    In my BricsCAD v14 (and a few earlier versions as well), I use a PDF printer driver, as it produces much smaller files than the BricsCAD save-as PDF. But, it seems that any particular layout tab can get randomly changed from landscape to doing portrait orientation. A layout tab can be a recent copy of an existing layout, but somehow acquire the wrong orientation. Note that the page orientation is NOT changed in the page setup dialog. But, for some reason when I print to the PDF driver, it changes its orientation, and sometimes even the page sequence, even though I use a list in the Publish dialog box that is the correct order.

    I've never found a great solution, in spite of the effort from BricsCAD support, who put more than a little time into it. Since my PDF editor has a setting to rotate all the pages that are the wrong orientation. So, I often fix the problem that way. It is a hassle, but the problem doesn't show itself on most of my projects.

    Of course, a physical print is not fixable after it is printing. But, I added my comment above to say that there is a possibility that it may not be fixable in a convenient way. You may end up stuck with an inconvenient work-around. Anthony's habit of printing to a PDF first, is one possible approach. I wonder if there might be some way to automate the process of first printing to the PDF, and then automatically causing the PDF to print to the HP 500.


  • Thanks Joe, good comments. I will take another look at this when I get time and see what can be done.

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