Calculating Grids: Newbie Question

Tom Jepson

New Member
Hi all. First post and it's probably a common one, although the search field gave me nothing useful.

Can you help me with calculating grids? I've been using this ( you make a grid.pdf) guide to try and work out how to construct my page grid. I've set my text area, counted my lines, and adjusted for an even division. When I try and apply the grid to my margined page, the number of lines doesn't flow correctly (eg. they don't fit the grid size as they should) and cross over the gutters in odd places.

I've ordered a copy of Muller-Brockman's tome but it'll be a week or more before that lands. Can anyone help me with the correct calculations for working out a basic grid?

To be honest I haven't used calculations like this since I lost my type scale and had a computer! I suppose I just faff about!
Like Kate, I would say to just use your intuition.

Something like InDesign does the work for you, you just need to give it the numbers. You can preview the margins, columns and gutters etc shifting around as you nudge the measurements up or down incrementally and, again, just go with what feels right for things like columns.

Obviously you still need to be conscious of things like having enough margin and usually a greater inside margin, but you'll be alright without worrying about it too much.
What they said. You don't need to do complicated calculations, just pick the grid that works for you. If you're really stuck, you can download ready made indesign grids off of the interweb. Can't remember where, you'd have to Google it.
Ok, cool. I know that InDesign does to a fair whack of the work; I'm comfortable setting up my grids and twisting them within an inch of their usability! However, I'm really interest in the 'old school' methods of typesetting and grid layouts. I know it's a completely redundant process now but it seems like great knowledge to know... if only to use it to smash the rules and define new ones!

Thanks for the input, guys'n'gals.