5 1/2 X 8 /12 Paper

Just found your site. Outstanding! Any suggestions as to where I can purchase:
Prepunched 5 1/2 X 8 1/2 paper (Lined and Blank)
Pads of 5 1/2 X 8 1/2 (Lined and BlanK)

Any suggestions as to suppliers or retailers would be greatly appreciated.


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Paper resellers

I usually guillotine my own blank paper from regular letter-size, and get cheap line paper from the small office supply store around the corner.

I'm sure someone else here might be able to recommend a supplier. Whereabouts are you located, and are you looking for mail-order or someone local?

all my best,

I've used a guillotine and

I've used a guillotine and paper punch a lot. If you want it perfect and prepunched though, I'd buy a box of whatever paper you plan to use, and take it to a print shop with an example page. They can cut the entire box to size(should last a very long time), and pre-drill it. This costs more, but has the advantage of only needing to be done once in a long while. The print shop around the corner from where i work will do this service for me for about $20 US, not sure what it would cost elswhere

Some won't punch more than 3 holes

When I was putting together my first D*I*Y Planner, I tried to find a place that would punch 7 holes, so the paper would go in my FranklinCovey / Day-Timer planner. The FedEx Kinko's locations I tried would not do it, so I had them cut the paper. I bought a hole punch at my local FranklinCovey store and punch pages by hand, 5 at a time.

-- flexiblefine

Yep - 'bout how it worked for me....

I live in an area where the ONLY place to buy a spine with rings was FC - so I have a 7-ring setup. Since that's what I had, I also bought the "cheap" portable punch which does the appro set of 7 holes.... not ideal, but ordering a 3-ring spine would have actually cost me more than buying the punch (shipping, handling, tax, etc. from Staples - because *sigh* the local store doesn't keep spines in stock, but since there IS a local store, one has to pay tax....)

Franklin Binders - 7 hole to 3 hole

You can easily convert a 7 ring Franklin binder by breaking off 4 of the rings with a pair of pliers. Then any 3-hole 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 paper will fit, and so will all the Franklin stuff.
Grasp the ring from the side, and rotate the pliers so the ring moves top to bottom and vice-versa, and the ring will soon break. I've done this to a couple nice Franklin binders without harming them.

Don't try to remove FC rings with pliers

I removed four of the Franklin Covey rings with pliers and now my beautiful planner - formerly worth $150 - is ruined. The whole ring binder is bent and the three rings don't close together properly. When I try to flip pages (the whole point behind putting together this DIY planner), the paper comes off the rings. I'm so mad I could spit. I certainly wish I'd been smarter and NEVER tried this! Now I have to buy a whole new ring binder. Might as well have just paid the extra for Franklin Covey blank pages.

reclaim what you can?

Most binders are held in with rivets. I use a Dremmel tool to grind the rivets out, but you could try a file, and depending on where the rivets are pressed, maybe a screwdriver, and light taps with a hammer to push the rivets through.

Once that's done, you should be able to find a 3 ring binder that's bound to the back, cut off the front, and (I hope this $130 binder has a back slide-in pocket) slide that into the leather binder.

Since it's already "ruined", you can hardly make it worse. And you might make it better. :-) Also, if you like Circa, you could slide that in instead. Can you post pics of the inside of your planner?


$150 Binder ruined

I am so sorry but I could not help but to laugh. Not laughing at you but with you because of the things we try to save a few dollars. I feel your pain...

The tragedy was preventable

FC ring mechanisms are held in with Allen bolts -- easily loosened and removed. Replacement rings can, I believe, be obtained from FC.
"I think the surest sign that there is intelligent life out there in the universe is that none of it has tried to contact us." (Calvin and Hobbes/Bill Waterson)

I tried this...

It was an intriguing diy idea and I wanted to try. But it didn't work for me. Fortunately I tried it on an old binder I'd been given and didn't care about, so it wasn't a big loss. But I suggest that if you care about the binder, you not do the twisting bit--if you can get a bolt cutter or something similar and just cut off the rings, it would probably be fine, but twisting and trying to break off the rings might not work so well.

5 1/2 x 8 1/2 paper

Staples sells packs of 100 sheets 100% recycled three hole College Ruled lined paper refills, SKU 70972 20810, at least here in VA. $2.29 @. Made by Roaring Spring Paper Products, Roaring Spring, PA.

Dear JOnas, Thanks so much

Dear JOnas, Thanks so much for the info....Shirl

7-hole punch

If you use a 7-ring binder, as do I, you know refills (when you can find them) are very expensive--even for just drilled lined pads! I invested in a 7-hole punch and design all my own forms to print 2 abreast on normal 8.5x11 paper. I print a master, take it to the quick printer and have him run a ream or more on my paper on both sides. I cut the paper in half and punch it while watching CNN or C-Span or some other channel that just requires my listening, not viewing. In no time I have the job done at barely the cost of one set of refills.

HERE'S THE BEST PART: You can get a 7-hole (acutally 2-7 holes adjustable) Swingline punch for only $20.35 (it cost me with tax and s/h only $28.80) from http://www.discountofficesupplies.com The item number is ACC74011. It's a heavy-gaged quality hole punch worth every penny and it has save me a lot of money not having to buy expensive pads and forms. The added advantage that I customize my forms precisely the way I want them!

Hope this helps, as it took me weeks before I located an online store that sold and INEXPENSIVE hole punch. Forget Staples, they wanted something like $70 for a non-adustable 7-hole punch 1/10th the quality of the Swingline that I purchased. It was my first buying experience from Discount Office Supplies and it could not have been better. Delivered in a timely fashion, the item was exactly as described and the price was reasonable. What more could one ask?

P.S. You can also phone your order at: 1-800-734-6020. Yes, it's true: toll-free and a live person on the other end!

Get the authentic Franklin Covey punch for less!

If you go to the franklincovey.com website, you can get the 7 hole Classic punch for less than the Swingline.

Item # 22997
List Price: $22.95
Price: $18.36

I have one of these at my office and it works well, although I've since switched to a Circa system and the Circa punch costs a heck of a lot more!

I actually picked up the Swingline adjustable 7 hole punch for only $10 at a local office supply store on special, though like my FC punch at the office, have not been using it much.

I found that Hammermill 24 lb multipurpose paper works very well for printing Classic size DIYplanner templates and then cutting and punching. It takes fountain pen ink very well. The slight extra thickness, compared to "normal" 20 lb paper works better for Circa discs, and the quality is better than the lined paper sold by most of the stores.

Good luck,

Remember, no matter where you go, there you are.
B. Banzai

stapes bought out discount office

and now, I cannot seem to find the hole puncher you shared about. :(

5 1/2 x 8 1/2 paper

The office supply stores carry lined, punched paper this size, but you have to look hard for it. Some address books are this size so you might also look for tabs etc. in the address book section.

Making tabbed dividers

I actually make my own, and it's quite easy. From the Handbook: Basic Supplies:

You can purchase a couple of sets of tabbed dividers, or you can make your own. If you choose the latter, I recommend 100-120 lb card stock and Avery self-adhesive "Shield Tabs" -- I found the clear ones (37107) at the local Wal-Mart for about $1.50 USD.

Of course, you can also use the coloured ones, or the ones that have little stickers you can adhere. Making your own set allows a lot more flexibility in how you set up your planner (e.g., different colours for @Inbox, projects, references, etc., several different tiers for easy look-up, and even horizontal/vertical tab mixes). Still, it does look a litle more... uhm, "D-I-Y", depending on how much work you want to put in on it.


Prepunched Paper

I get Staples to cut down 10 letter-sized pads at a time, and to do the punching. I end up with really nice 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 inch paper at about 75 percent less than if I bought from Franklin or Daytimer.


What are the settings used in Word for 5 1/2x 8 1/2 paper

I have been trying, rather experimenting, with creating my reference lists in Word (I have Mac office). What are the best settings for the top, bottom, margins for 5 1/2 x 8 1/2 paper?

Respectfully Yours,


I like 1" for the left edge where the holes will be and 1" at the top. I do 1/2" on the right side and bottom. I'd go closer to the edge on the side and bottom, but my printer will not allow me to do that.

Classic margins

I don't know if this helps, but the margins on the Classic pages from the D*I*Y Planner are about 3/4" on the inside (where the rings are), 1/4" on the outside, about 1/4" on top, and 1/2" on the bottom (the latter depends on the length of the template, and varies slightly). That being said, that assumes headers and the like, so aesthetics might dictate a slightly bigger margin on top if you don't have one (such as 1/2" or so).

all my best,

Making your own lined paper

I used to buy the pre-punched AtaGlance pads that Staples sold, yet at almost $5 US for 30 pages, I felt that this was I rip off. So I bought some junior size legal pads ($3 for a pack of 12 at 60 pages each), removed them from the cardboard piece holding them in place, hole punched them, and then put them back into the cardboard (stapling it shut). All in all, this takes about 2 minutes per pad, is just as effective as the AtaGlance pages, and is substantially cheaper than buying pre-cut pads or having them cut professionally.

I use up a lot of space

so I fill up my page as much as possible. I set mine (in word) at .3 top and bottom and .2 in and outside. I set "Mirror Margins" and give the inside a .3 gutter position.

Re: Classic Margins


Thank-you for your help.

Respectfully Yours,

I buy the 200 pages classic

I buy the 200 pages classic size white unlined pages from Franklin Covey.

~~making innocent internet bystanders evil, one username at a time. ~~

pre-drilled paper for 5.5x8.5

Try these people for blank & lined paper
looks pretty cheap to me.
Want fancy paper?

cool links

Thanks for the link! I'm going to order something from Linton Labels, just because I love their quirky sense of humour :)

I just went to my local copy

I just went to my local copy shop first because I prefer to patronize local small businesses. They wanted to charge me $31 per ream of paper to cut and hole punch. And I wanted a ream of white, a ream of blue (I use blue pages for ideas), and a ream of graph paper. So that would have been a lot of money.

Then I went to Staples and they said they'd cut it for me for free but they couldn't do the hole punching. So I bought all of the paper I wanted from them and spent about $25 for 3 reams of paper. They cut it in half. And now I have to order a hole puncher but it's still cheaper than having the printer do it. Plus I'm sure I'll be making other customized things, pockets, etc. for my planner so I'll need the hole punch anyway.

I go to Office Depot...

As we don't have a freestanding Staples here... I will have to look into Staples when we move to Phoenix AZ in a couple of years, that sounds like a bargain!

Anyways, because I have a teacher's discount, I get 15% off of printing needs - which includes cutting, binding, and anything else out of that little area.

I just print on 8.5x11 paper. I don't cut my planner pages because I like being able to do four weeks together and just fold them over. It keeps them together, and I don't have to flip through all the pages for one month. Call me weird, that is just how I work.

I use a puncher from Franklin Covey, but am looking into something with more power. This one is plastic, and I know there has to be ones out there that punch like regular punchers! Any suggestions?

See my post above for punch suggestions...

You can get a metal Classic desktop punch from Franklin Covey for less than $20 plus shipping, or check out Fisher Hawaii for a metal Swingline 7 hole punch model 74011. Oddly enough, I found that the Swingline couldn't be adjusted to punch the 6 hole Compact size (6.75" x 4.25") to fit another binder I had. Strange, but true.


Remember, no matter where you go, there you are.
B. Banzai

pre-drilled paper for 5.5x8.5

Thanks susancragin! Exactly what I wanted.

thank so much...

for the link with the fancy paper. I must have it!! Not sure what I will do with it, but ....something!! :)

I made 5.5" x 8.5" paper

I made 5.5" x 8.5" paper from the ordinary white letter-sized paper. How can I set up the margins to print on 5.5" x 8.5" paper in Adobe Reader, Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel? (I'm using Windows XP)

by program

In the office suite page size is a part of the print proprities. In acrobat, you tell it to scale it to the whole page and tell your printer it has classic sized pages.

5.5"x8.5" Paper & 7 Hole punching

I recommend, like some others, to take as many reams of paper (8.5"x11") as you need over to a local copy shop for cutting down to the 5.5"x8.5" size. Kinko's in my area charges $1.50 per cut; they can cut a huge stack of paper with one cut, so when I took in one ream of paper, it cost me just one cut - $1.50. Cheap!

As for the hole punching, I recommend the Swingline #74011 adjustable 7 hole punch. This is the one I purchased based on recommendations from members of this Website, and I could not be more pleased. The Swingline #74011 is heavy duty and smooth, and it's easy on my hands. Since it's adjustable, I can use it for just about any other job, though I have used it, thus far, solely for my Daytimer planner punching needs. Also, while I have read on this site that the Swingline #74011 cannot punch the 6 hole configuration, I believe it could be easily modified by drilling a couple of holes to allow for the correct spacing for 6 hole planners. Great product!

You can check with your

You can check with your local print shop to see if they will hole punch the paper for you. We have one in our area that will make and print all the types of paper you listed, for a reasonable price. The price/quantity comparison is much better than buying from your local office supply store but you may have to be willing to buy more than you need as some print shops have a minimum piece of paper requirement.

Removing Rings From FC Binders

Hi, I stumbled to this discussion late, but for those of you who have FC binders...

A while back a friend of mine (not me :-) was not using her FC binder because one of the specialized screws holding the ring assembly to the binder had fallen out, and the rings were flopping around attached only by the other screw.

Having been a heavy FC customer in the past, I called them up on her behalf to see if the binder could be repaired, and it turns out that they had a screw and tool kit that they send out FOR FREE to reattach the ring assembly when this happens.

So if you have a messed up binder from a 7-ring to 3-ring conversion attempt, it might be worth a call to them. Maybe (without necessarily confessing all :-) you could purchase a new ring assembly at nominal cost or an el chepo sale binder and screw/tool kit to repair your binder.

Or maybe they would send you just the screw/tool kit for free it you want to try removing the rings and doing the 7-ring to 3-ring conversion in a more controlled environment, like with a bench vise and cutting tool.

Crafty Pagan Computer Geek

5.5 x 8.5 paper

I have seen (and lusted after) packs of 100 pages that are perforated down the middle to print the Classic size on.
It is at a Staples here in GA. BUT it is in Breast Cancer pale pink. Since I am a 4 years survivor I need to find me a fella to buy some for me. I'm too cheap...er...financially challenged.

Filler paper

Office Depot online item #498899
120 sheets, lined, 7 hole punched for $1.99