Fixed title block with flexible canvas size

In CAD programs, you’re able to have a title block that stays the same size, while you can scale the graphics. So while your drawings get larger and more complicated, they will still fit on XX size paper. The graphics, of course, get smaller. But the title block stays the same size across all pages.

Is there a way of doing this in OmniGraffle? I’m currently on version 6…6.2 Pro, but will upgrade if necessary. The flexible/auto-expanding canvas is in the right direction, but it shrinks everything in a canvas, including the title block.


Sure! There are multiple ways to do this. You could use Infinite Canvas and check Fit Content on One Page in the Canvas Inspector like this:

You also could set Flexible Canvas on 2 sides, then choose Size Uses Printer Pages, so you can control how many pages are used and which orientation they are in, like this example (which is close to what OmniGraffle 6 did with Auto Sizing down and to the right).

You can also make a layer and lock it, and that will mean you can change everything on other layers, but the locked layer stays exactly how you want it to be. If you don’t want to use multiple layers, you can lock just one object as well by selecting it, Control + Clicking and choosing Lock from the context menu. I personally like using separate layers because it makes it easier to select just the content you want to edit without accidentally changing the parts I want to stay the same.

To lock a layer, in the Layers sidebar, toggle to expand the canvas if needed, then click the lock icon by the layer you want to lock:

I hope this helps!


No, it is not. I am informing you of that so that you understand, your approach is incorrect. Use another approach.

I have hundreds of technical diagrams, constructed in OG 5. The auto-expanding canvas is totally useless to me.

Nevertheless …

Simple. Just lock the text block (title or other) in the precise position that you desire (bottom left, etc) on the page.

I use Templates for all my drawings. Therefore the set-up is done once, for title; header; footer; description text; and [if a genuine technical diagram] a complex title block and legend.

It will be easier if you have a standard text block, with all properties; tabs; spacing; etc st.

Yes, the Text Block itself is broken (refer the several threads re the problems), but hey, that is OG. OG 5 is much less broken than OG 6.


Thanks, but I’m not sure either of these responses are what I’m looking for. I can see how my initial explanation may not have been completely clear.

Say I have an 11x17" drawing with 20 circles on it, and the title block. Everything fits neatly into that 11x17 space, and all is good.

Things expanded, now I need 50 circles to fit onto that 11x17" page. That’s easy to achieve with an auto-expanding canvas combined with the “print canvas on one page” option. BUT, the “print canvas on one page” option will shrink the title block (because adding all those new circles went way outside the original size of the title block). I want it to shrink only the circles, the title block should always stay the same size relative to the 11x17" paper.

Locking the title block doesn’t seem to be making any difference, “print on one page” seems to always shrink all objects, unless I’m missing an option somewhere.

In AutoCAD, this is achieved using paper space, which defines the page layout and texts, and using viewports to scale the (model space) graphics independent of the title block and related paper space objects.

Is that any clearer?


Yes, it is. Ok, what I suggested (second part) will not work.

I was not suggesting any of the options that Lanette suggested.

What I suggested (first part) was NOT to use auto-size. And then, in that scenario … various details. Eg. I have fixed Portrait/Landscape x A4 to A0 page size set up as Templates. The components on the page, regardless of paper-size, are fixed, both in size and position on the page. I can scale the objects in the drawing (grab them all as a group), to fit on the page, without changing the fixed objects.

I agree, with auto-size turned on, locking the complex object (title block) will scale all objects.

OG does not have genuine CAD capabilities, it is just a great drawing tool, but badly maintained.


Selecting everything except the title block and scaling it was the first thing I tried, way back when, but I had issues with not everything scaling the same. In particular text. I’m playing around with it more now and think there are some things to look out for, particularly in the Geometry --> Scaling properties (Don’t scale, maintain aspect ratio, etc) that I need to figure out, if I can get things consistent that may be the answer.

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