We're aware of an issue with converting some DOC, DOCX, ODT, and RTF files to EPUB through our Ebook Wizard.
We've created this Forum Thread with some workarounds and advice to assist you in publishing you ebook.

Unwanted white gutter added around each page after upload.

I've been creating 8.5" x 8.5" books for a couple years now, but when I uploaded the latest version this time around it added a while gutter around each page leaving a white gap between my full-page images and the edge of the page.


For example, here's a screenshot of the PDF before i uploaded it (link to actual file parenthesis):




And here it is after:




But what's odd is this is the exact same template I've used before. All I did was swap out images and change text. But the old proofs from past projects don't show the gutter:




Even when I upload my PDFs from old versions (the ones I created and uploaded), the proofs now come back with the gutter.




Any ideas? Something appears to have changed since I last used Lulu and I don't know how to adjust to make sure my full-page images do in fact go edge-to-edge when printed.


  • We did update the way out converter displays the print ready file for you. Previously, if you uploaded a file at the exact size, our printers added the trim margin on their end. The problem this presented is that authors would not realize their document could have a trim margin added when creating, so we changed the converter to accurately display this trim margin on the print ready file.


    If you want your color to extend to the edge of the page, you'll need to set up the file for full bleed:



  • Very much appreciate the reply, Paul.


    That makes sense. I did notice a bit of white on a few edges of previous books once they were printed that was likely the result of that mismatch between what i saw and what margins the printers had to add at printing.


    Am I correct to assume, then, that if I upload the same 8.5" x 8.5" PDF now that I did last year, the actual size of the text and images will be identical in the printed books?




  • Em_PressEm_Press Professor



    If you upload a PDF that is 8.5x8.5 you will have white lines around your images if they touch the edge of your page.


    If you upload a PDF that is 8.75 x8.75 you will have no white lines. This is called full bleed.



     A citizen of the world.

  • Right, my question was simply whether an 8.5" upload printed now would look the same as an 8.5" upload before the change.

  • Em_PressEm_Press Professor

    Your 8.5 upload will have white lines. It will look the same as the images you provided -- with the white lines.


    If you upload an 8.75 x8.75 PDF, it will not have white lines.

     A citizen of the world.

  • EM got it right on. If you stick with the 8.5 x 8.5, you'll likely see some white on the edges. 

  • Is that a "yes", then?



    I understand what you've both said about margins and white and sizes, but I'm not asking about those with this last question. I'm asking a Yes/No question about printing now versus printing then.


    Will an 8.5" file uploaded and printed in April 2016 look the same as an 8.5" file uploaded an printed in April 2015?


    Yes or no?

  • The amount of white you see around the edge could vary slightly. Basically, the printers need an extra 1/8" to trim, but they can trim a fraction more or less, which can result in the white border (if you aren't setting up for full bleed). So a printing from a year about with an 8.5 x 8.5 file could show some white bordering, while a 8.5 x 8.5 file published today could show none. 


    The constant is that, if the file has full page color and you don't size the file for full bleed you MIGHT see some white bordering, but you might not.



  • I really don't understand this. So we have added the bleed, as shown in the instructions, to our interior pages for the casewrap hardcover book -- which adds the bleed for our pages. Our page size is set at 8.25 x 10.75 as stated in your instructions. Now we are seeing an unwanted white border, even though we did add the extra bleed. Now I think you are saying that we need to make the PAGE SIZE 8.5 x 11 and add the bleed beyond that?!

    I don't understand why there is only a template provided for the cover, but not the interior of the casewrap book, since the template would probably answer this clearly.

  • Hi FontaineL,

    Bleed is required at 0.125" on each side of the page. If the file uploaded is not 0.25" larger than the page size, our system has to resize and add bleed.

    This article goes into detail about how to achieve full bleed printing:

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