What's the best way to change the spacing with glyphs that have metrics keys?

Hi guys,

I’m working on a font where I’d like to change the spacing. The main glyphs have metrics keys, so other glyphs depend on that. But some glyphs don’t have metrics keys, because they’re just better off handled manually.

Now I’d like to change the spacing, say overall -10%. What’s the best way to do this? Is there a plugin that takes the values in the metrics keys in consideration, and changes the other values as well?
Or perhaps Glyphs can do this out of the box?

Love to hear from you. Thanks in advance.

I would adjust the spacing globally with the transform filter and then reapply the metrics keys.

there is a @mekkablue script/plugin that does exactly this, it change spacing of the whole font by percentage

The change by percentage is in most cases not a good idea. The script was done on a special request. You mostly like to do it with a fixed value. Because glyphs with a negative side bearing will get tighter otherwise.

I agree. Percentage changes are usually wrong, and I have yet to see a case where it isn’t. I wrote the script because some people insisted.

You want to reduce spacing? Then subtract x number of units from all the sidebearings. You want to increase spacing? Then add x number of units.

A percentage change is not ‘increasing’ or ‘reducing’ sidebearings. It is de facto randomly changing the spacing. Some glyphs will receive a lot more, some will receive a little more, some remain unchanged, some are reduced a little and some are reduced a lot.

I would be very interested in a scenario where this would actually make sense. I do not believe it exists though.

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Hi Georg and Rainer, I’d like to reduce spacing. I agree, reducing it by percentage might not work! I’ll do this optically, but I wrongly called it reducing by percentage. :wink:

I just want to prevent my metrics keys getting messed up if I reduce by x number of units.
I’ll just have to give it a try and see what happens. I’m sure it will work out fine, I just wanted your opinion on best practises.

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Your metrics keys may get out of sync. So make sure you update metrics after batch-changing sidebearings.

Georgs tips worked. I tried a few ways, but the easiest was just to change the spacing with the transform filter and then apply and adjust the metrics keys. Glyphsapp rules! :wink: