Creating Metric Drawing Sheets with Imperial Page Sizes

Although imperial measurements remain the prevalent standard in the U.S., a growing number of projects are indeed utilizing metric measurements. This combination of both imperial and metric measurements creates a unique challenge for many architects and engineers. After all we’re taught paper space (layouts) should always be 1:1, yet using a standard imperial paper size like Arch D (24 in x 36 in) will yield a layout of about 0.94 x 1.41 units – not the intended result.

So the question remains, how do you plot a metric drawing using a standard imperial paper size such as Arch D (24 in x 36 in)?

  1. Open the Page Setup Manager; right-click on layout tab, Application Menu > Print > Page Setup.
  2. Create a new named page setup by clicking New.
  3. Give your page setup a name and click OK. In this example I’ll use Arch D Metric
  4. Configure the Page Setup dialog just as you would for a “normal” imperial plot.
    Select plotter, paper size, etc.
  5. Within the Plot Scale portion of the Page Setup dialog, click the drop-down list that currently reads inches, and click mm.
  6. Verify the Plot Scale is 1:1, and the preview updates to display the dimensions of the selected paper size in millimeters not inches (914 mm x 610 mm in the example of an Arch D 36 in x 24 in drawing sheet). Click OK to save the page setup.

The most important part to the above process is changing from inches to mm within the Plot Scale portion of the dialog. Doing this will make it so you can plot to a 24 in x 36 in piece of paper, but more importantly – select actual Metric scales for your viewports.

Donnie Gladfelter
Donnie Gladfelter

Donnie is author of the book and Autodesk Official Press, AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT: No Experience Required, a columnist for AUGIWorld Magazine, Autodesk University speaker, and former member of the AUGI Board of Directors.


  1. i did it something similar but from metric to imperial, but now i need to print the same drawing (previously in ARCH C) in ARCH D size for licenses , i have a chart i found part searching in internet and part with printings testing, i pretty much have complete scale equivalents for imperial scales but im having a hard time doing it for metric scales so far i know 1:10 for A3 became 1:15 for A4 and 1:100 for ARCH C became 1:75 for ARCH D, can you please help me with the rest or at least with te reletion to calculate the others

    thanks a lot

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Discover more from The CAD Geek

Subscribe now to keep reading and get access to the full archive.

Continue Reading