3 fold brochure

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Hi there,

as a complete newbie to fold brochures I want to create a 3-fold roll brochure to be printed by a professional printhouse. I want to provide them with a pdf file. (The graphic designers there use Adobe software, so I want to avoid discussing the underlying source file.)

I would create a Single Page type of document with 2 pages in Scribus (my version is 1.5.7) and arrange the content in 3 panels per page as depicted in the attachment.

What I do not understand is, how to include "folding marks" of "folding guides" or however it is called (I do not know the right expression) so that the printhouse knows where to fold. I want to control their exact position as the panels may not be equal size etc.

(Maybe I should mention that I also tried the Facing Pages type of document just to see how it works in Scribus, even though there is only the half fold option with 2 panels next to each other. As a result, it exported every panel as a separate page with bleeds. I expected it would export 2 pages with 2 panels per page and bleeds around each pair of panels.)

Many thanks!


Quote from: know473 on March 12, 2023, 05:53:40 PM...The graphic designers there use Adobe software, so I want to avoid discussing the underlying source file.
even then i would ask the print house how they would like the fold marks in the .pdf file. (it could be a hairline in a spot color called 'fold' or something like that...)



What I have read in the past is that most printing houses either have fixed folds (they give you the measurements, you have do adopt your design) or they say you can just describe in an illustration how you want it folded.

The different layouts in Scribus (like "facing pages") are just for how Scribus will display the pages when you work on the document. When exporting, Scribus always exports every individual page by itself. Becuase it it the task of the impositioning software to place the pages on the printed sheets.


I agree that you must talk to your print shop. They will most likely have a regular three-fold in their program, and that will be for a regular price. Typically they will provide you with a PDF for self-download where you can see their layout, dimensions, bleeds, color-profiles etc.

If you want to tweak your flyer and want to insist on non-standard locations for folding, you need to check availability and pricing first. And if they agree to follow your custom ideas, they will ask for your print-run and give you a quote (which you might rather not like). And only in this case, will they let you know if and how you need to mark your document.

No worries: Nobody will want to argue with you how you produce your documents - as long as you provide valid PDF, according to their specs. We are doing this with Scribus for years, creating PDF for commercial printing. And we never had discussions and we never had any document refused because of PDF-specs. (We also do pre-flight-checks, using Adobe Acrobat and if we ever had issues, it was not Scribus, it was my settings.)

You can go to any forum: They will always sing the same chorus: "Speak to your printer!" And guess why: Because with good communication everybody will be happy, and no paper or money gets wasted. Even affordable online-print-shops will have comm-channels open, because they also want to avoid frustrations and waste. Every time we make contact, we learn something. You got nothing to loose.

Presently using Scribus 1.5.8 on Windows and on Linuxes.
I am a Newbie here in the forum (since 2015) but I am using Scribus for over 10 years for work and privately.


As someone who works in printing, I'll reiterate what others have said: Talk to the printer!

Over the years, many people would have saved lots of time and effort if they had done that first instead of guessing or asking on forums or asking everywhere but the printer who will be printing the job.