Physically enlarging text via measurements?

nvrlookback's picture

Hey, guys I'm new on here, hope this is in the best section. I kind of have a peculiar question. I'm looking to physically enlarge a text(Ziggurat) in order to use it as a stencil. I would have kinko's do it as usual, but considering the size, it will be more expensive than I'd like to pay.

I was wondering if anyone new of a site or place to find font measurements and pitches, which would make it very easy to enlarge. If not, I guess I'll resort to finding the ratios from photoshop or try to make/buy a projector. Any other tips or recommendations would be appreciated.


oldnick's picture

If you actually own the font, what's to prevent you from setting individual letters in an appropriate type size, printing them out individually, and then pasting them on cardboard to cut the stencil? With most faces, you could easily print a 500-700 pt. letter on a letter-sized sheet...

nina's picture

…or setting the letters really large in Illustrator (potentially with a grid behind them) to measure their individual parts?

JamesM's picture

> With most faces, you could easily print a 500-700 pt.
> letter on a letter-sized sheet

And if you need a letter bigger than that, you can tile it across several sheets, and then cut/tape them together to form the complete letter. Some programs (InDesign, for example) can tile automatically when printing an image that's too big to fit on one sheet.

> or try to make/buy a projector

If you use a projector, draw some faint vertical and horizontal guidelines on the cardboard -- or whatever surface you're projecting onto -- to help keep everything aligned and to make sure you're not getting any subtle distortion.

nvrlookback's picture

I've already been tiling at kinko's with 11"x17" cardstock (their largest size available for cardstock). But since this will be about 5ftx50ft(250sq.ft) printing at kinko's could potentially cost $140-$180. I was just hoping there was an easier way than the grid system.

After some googl-ing, I think I've settled on trying to copy this simple projector design, but I will most likely resort to manually taking the measurements from the computer, which requires no cost. I know an antique store that sells old lenses, but it may not be worth the cost.

Thanks for the input

oldnick's picture

Edmund Scientific used to sell inexpensive meniscus lenses in larger sizes. Some thirty-five or forty years ago, I built an opaque projector with two three-inch lenses mounted the proper distance apart (Google "optics") at either end of a cardboard tube. The whole project cost less than $10 (hey, I said it was awhile ago), and worked just fine.

JamesM's picture

You might see if any of your friends have access to a multimedia projector you could borrow -- the kind that hook directly to a computer to project PowerPoint presentations and so forth. They're used at many companies, schools, etc.

nvrlookback's picture

As it turns out my uncle has an old 48" printer from his architect co. that I'm going to mod into an xy table. The computer will draw/cut it out for me! Now the only cost will be a sharpie/exacto and poster board. No more settling for stencil or helvetica fonts. No more kinko's or rulers.

For anyone that's interested, I've decided to continue the you are beautiful movement. Let me know if anything makes you cringe. Still new to typography.

cerulean's picture

Cool. Kern A-U closer together.

hrant's picture

The font doesn't have an "AU" kern?


kentlew's picture

The Ziggurat font contains both /YO/ and /AU/ kern pairs, neither of which appear to be deployed in the setting above.

nvrlookback's picture

Will do. Now that I look at it, AU looks quite bad here. Thanks

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