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Is it possible to lock the scale in the QGIS 2.0.1 print composer? Every time I resize the map, the scale is adjusted. This makes trying out different map layouts really annoying.

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  • What do you mean with "resize the map"? Commented Nov 10, 2013 at 20:01
  • In the print composer I can change the size of the map on the page. If the page is A4-format I can make it the size of the page or leave a border. When I do this the scale always changes. Commented Nov 10, 2013 at 20:28

5 Answers 5

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Update 27/07/2018: As of QGIS 3.2.1, my workaround below no longer works! If I find an alternative solution I will post here again. This is very, very annoying...


There is a way to do this.

  • In the Item properties tab for your map item, click on the black-and-yellow "data defined override" icon to the right of the "scale" box.
  • Click on "Edit".
  • In the "Expression" box, type your desired scale (for example, 50000) and hit OK.

The item's scale will now be fixed at 1:50000 and will remain so no matter how much you move or resize it.

Jyler's suggestion simply doesn't work (QGIS 2.6.0 Brighton) while I can only assume that Ardit either has the world's fastest PC and/or only works on very simple maps with a handful of layers. The automatic rescaling "feature" is incredibly annoying and I cannot imagine why the developers thought it was a good idea.

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  • Your solution continues to work in 3.8 and 3.4 though so that may have been a temporary bug.
    – she_weeds
    Commented Aug 10, 2019 at 14:16
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    I can confirm this solution works in 3.10 and 3.12 as well.
    – amcaninch
    Commented Jun 3, 2020 at 14:54
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This function was not added to QGIS until version 2.2, so it's a surprisingly recent development. In the most recent version the print composer behaves a little bit more like what we're used to with graphics editors - simply hold shift while you resize your map frame.

If it's a great inconvenience you can upgrade, otherwise you'll have to deal with this frustration. Here is a blog post that provides an overview of print composer improvements in 2.2, as well as a list of additions slated for future releases.

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    "Holding shift while resizing items locks their aspect ratio" not the scale.
    – underdark
    Commented Aug 11, 2015 at 21:48
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You can type in the desired scale manually in the scale text box every time you change the paper size. This can be done in a split of a second and I wouldn't call it annoying as far as you don't change the paper size let's say more than 20 times.

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This can be achieved in 3.0.2 by setting the 'unit' dropdown menu in the Symbol Style options panel to "meters at scale".

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I was looking how to do this today. If you're happy with the scale and the position of the upper-left corner of your map, then you can copy and paste your Scale, X min and Y max values as data-defined values.

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