Printing Big Maps

edited October 2012 in Story Games
I would like to print some big maps. Ones that would cover a gaming table. Does anyone have recommendations? Costs for such a project? BW vs Color?



  • It'll all depend on your budget and the sizes you need.
    Prices for large-format printing can range anywhere from $2 - $10 per square foot, depending on the machines a particular shop uses, the type of paper/material, and whether black and white vs. color.
    If the maps are going to be reused or written on, I'd suggest laminating them, which adds usually $2 - $4 per square foot, but allows you to use dry-erase pens on it.
  • Staples will do 48" x 30" full color of an uploaded design for $50 with a half day turnaround. For another $10 they'll do it on vinyl, which I imagine would probably handle wet erase markers, but I can't confirm that. But either way, the vinyl should be more durable for repeated use than the polypro.

    There's a good baseline.
  • Ok cool! Thanks for the help!
  • edited October 2012
    I used to work at a blueprint shop. It was awesome for Shadowrun, since I could just take home the throw away sheets, so I always had huge maps of buildings and complexes, some with real security measures noted on them and stuff. It was tight work.

    On topic, my shop used to do 36x48 BW for like $1.50 a sheet. Plotters are fairly cheap to print with for the sizes you'll get. Color was considerably more expensive. I wouldn't do color unless you plan to laminate it for protection since I found they bleed and fade very easily.
  • Thanks Zachary!
  • edited October 2012
    And for a low budget alternative: printing it out with a tool like posterazor and glue it together. It takes some time but I had recently made some pretty nice 35x35" town maps.
  • Posters are cheap to print! Make them poster-size.
  • I work in printing and have printed out maps on a number of materials - the basic 13oz scrim we use for banners is a decent material for printing maps; we charge $5.75 / sq ft for the 13 oz, but there's a lower cost 8oz material we sell for ~$4 / sq ft. Neither of those materials takes markers very well, unfortunately, but the maps look really nice.
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