Modeled after ActionMailer this gem allows you to render PDFs from HTML via Rails templating engine. Also you can preview your PDF templates via a supplied engine during development.


Add this line to your application's Gemfile:

gem 'pixelpress'

And then execute:

$ bundle

Or install it yourself as:

$ gem install pixelpress


Run the printer generator providing the name of your printer with methods to be generated:

rails generate pixelpress:printer NAME [method_name1 method_name2 ...] [options]

This creates an ApplicationPrinter in app/printers and the corresponding subclass and also mounts the engine in your config/routes.rb file.


$ rails g pixelpress:printer invoice customer_invoice delivery_document     

will generate app/printers/invoice_printer.rb file which looks like this:

class InvoicePrinter < ApplicationPrinter
    def customer_invoice
        # put your code here

    def delivery_document
        # put your code here

Also this command will generate the corresponding templates as .pdf.erb files located in app/views/printers/invoice/:

  • customer_invoice.pdf.erb
  • delivery_document.pdf.erb

You can preview your documents by running rails s and go to


To use your printers in code, you can instantiate them just like mailers:

InvoicePrinter.customer_invoice.pdf # render a temporary pdf file
InvoicePrinter.customer_invoice.html # get the rendered document in html format

So you can send them to the client via a controller action:

class InvoicesController < ApplicationController
  def show
    document = InvoicePrinter.customer_invoice
    respond_to do |format|
      format.html { render html: document.html }
      format.pdf { send_data document.pdf.read, disposition: 'inline', type: 'application/pdf' }


After checking out the repo, run bin/setup to install dependencies. Then, run rake spec to run the tests. You can also run bin/console for an interactive prompt that will allow you to experiment.

To install this gem onto your local machine, run bundle exec rake install. To release a new version, update the version number in version.rb, and then run bundle exec rake release, which will create a git tag for the version, push git commits and tags, and push the .gem file to rubygems.org.


Bug reports and pull requests are welcome on GitHub at https://github.com/Alex/pixelpress.


The gem is available as open source under the terms of the MIT License.