This post: InkscapeForum.com • View topic - problem with path outset seems to suggest that "squared joins" are to blame, but here is an example showing the problem regardless:

Draw a straight line (using the Pen tool) with two nodes; make it some 22 units long, and set its stroke width to 2 px:


Then, do Path/Stroke to Path; set the fill of the new shape to None, and the stroke to black, 1 px:


This should now be a rectangular path (with nodes), not a rectangle object.

Finally, duplicate this path, and with the duplicate selected, call Path / Outset; the result is this:


As you can see, the outset is not rectangular anymore, but it has some weird roundings (I've selected it with the node tool so its nodes are visible - those are weirdly positioned to begin with). You can also see I've used "sqared join" stroke style all the time.

So, what can I do, to get an inset/outset in a case like this, such that if the input is made of straight lines (rectangular) - the output is made of straight lines (rectangular) as well?

2 Answers 2


The inset/outset steps changes by 2.0 px (Inkscape preference default value) which is perfect while working for larger objects (not for the above example). When the same settings is used for small paths the outset & inset becomes distorted. To avoid this problem try decreasing the value in preferences-Steps-inset/outset by

Here's the same rectangle with outset applied,with inset/outset setting changed to 0.2px.



Have you tried Dynamic Offset?

This is what it did for me with Inkscape 0.91

enter image description here

  • Thanks @SeanMadsen - but that outset is still round, not rectangular; cheers!
    – sdaau
    Mar 4, 2015 at 16:21
  • @sdaau: But that’s what an outset is supposed to do: It gives you the boundary of the set of points closer than x to the original path. If it would produce a rectangle, it wouldn’t be an outset anymore, but a rescaling.
    – Wrzlprmft
    Mar 4, 2015 at 17:22

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