10 August 2016

Gillio Mia Cara in A6 size

As you might know I'm a keen user of the A6 size planner format. I find the pages more 'natural' to use.

I have quite a few personal size organisers in my 'collection', but I don't think I will be getting rid of them just yet. I still like that size as well.

I've asked the people at Gillio a few times 'So when will Gillio be making an A6 Mia Cara?' They replied "One day but we don't know when yet"

So I decided to create my own and here it is.

Now I can hear you saying 'But Steve isn't that a Medium Size Mia Cara?'  Yes it is.... but here is the difference.

This one is fitted with A6 Krause rings. And look here are the pages in it.

And to prove they really are A6 pages here is a photo with a personal size page along side them.

Now I'm sure some of you might recall me previously saying that personal rings and A6 rings use different mounting points so one type will not fit in the other. Correct they will not.

Those are personal at the top with A6 below, notice the rectangular slots are placed differently.  Err so come on Steve how did you do it....

OK I will come clean and this is how I did it....
  1. Step one remove medium (personal rings) from the Mia Cara, keeping the backing plate. See the video for details. 
  2. Take apart a set of A6 rings. 
  3. Mark the medium backing plate for reducing in overall length, taking approximately 10 mm off each end with a hacksaw and a file to finish off any rough edges. 
  4. Put the A6 rings on to the modified medium backing plate as you would any other rings when reassembling them. The backing plates are the same width so the rings fit and work exactly the same. 
  5. Put the new modified A6 ring mechanism on to the Medium Mia Cara organiser section.
  6. And Robert is your mothers brother. 
Simples... or is it... 

OK there are some small issues with doing this modification that you need to consider before doing it yourself. 
  • You need to know and be confident at taking rings apart and reassembling them. See the video for details. 
  • You need some metalworking skills and tools to shorten the medium size backplate.
  • You could use the medium size backing plate without reducing the length of the backing plate, but the cover plate from the A6 rings doesn't fit very well, plus the backing plate has some nasty sharp edges on it when left exposed, which is why I shortened mine.  
  • In use the inserts get very close to the edge of the closed removable organiser because the pages are 10mm wider than the organiser was designed for. So top tabs as you can see above solve that problem. But you can use side tabs because there's plenty of space when reassembled in the outer jacket part of the Mia Cara. Side tabs will stick out of the organiser section though. 
Some tips if you are thinking of doing this modification yourself. 
  • See this post on where to buy your rings from.
  • If you are purchasing a set of A6 rings, you might want to consider purchasing a set of Personal (Standard/Medium) ones at the same time, so that if you want to revert your Mia Cara back to Medium rings then you will have an un-modifed set of rings to go back in to the organiser. 
  • Consult the Gillio warranty before performing any modification on one of their products yourself. 
I only 'converted' mine this morning so I can't really say what this will be like in every day use compared to a conventional A6 organiser, but I will let you know.

If it doesn't work out I will be able to swap it back to medium rings. 


  1. As an A6 lover myself, like Steve, i've also imagined an A6 Mia Cara. Just like the old saying: "Necessity is the mother of invention," just substitute the words: 'Planner love' for necessity!
    Grand idea Steve! (But when I saw the word 'hacksaw' I hesitated!)
    Here's hoping Gillio hears our A6 Mia plea!

    1. Yes I'm sure one day they will produce one. In the mean time this will do me fine.

      Also for people who aren't sure about going A6 for a relatively low cost (a couple of sets of rings) they can try it out and if they don't like it go back to personal in the same organiser.

      The hacksaw was used well away from the leather! I have been asked to do a video sometime to explain the swap in more detail. Hopefully in the next few days I will get that done.

  2. I would absolutely begin by watching a video of course -- and only then, I'd ask you to please do it for me? Kidding!
    Would you please consider posting this on our "Using A6 ... " FB group? I know hundreds of our members would love it! Thanks, Steve!

    1. I have posted a link there already Linda :)

  3. Beautiful.... but why would you not just use a6 paper in your personal rings? Especially since you print your own inserts. The official hole spacing it not the same, but if you use a personal punch for a6 paper, you still get 6 well spaced holes. I am using a6 paper for my personal too, because I like the format better and want to incorporate index cards, and all I had to do is switching to dividers/section markers at the top rather than on the side.

    1. Yes you could do that, but all my inserts are already punched for A6 already.

  4. Very creative! I want to do this but I hesitate because I use my mia for everything and don't want to go up to a medium size. I have resolved to using a pocket mia cara until one day an A6 makes an appearance in the line. I dislike the pocket for the fact that it doesn't have a zipper so I am SUPER dreaming we see am Mia Cara in an A6 with a zipper. I would buy that sucker in a hot minute!

  5. Steve!? Will a a6 compagna fit into a medium mia jacket?

    1. No it is too tall! But nice idea... although you would have the issue of the clasp etc to deal with!

  6. Hey Steve, I'm seriously considering doing this, I have an a6 mia in dark brown now but so badly one one in croco, did you use 20 or 25mm a6 rings for this conversion? I'm wondering if you used 25mm, if 2025mm rings would hold the pages in far enough for side tabs to not overhang the binder. Hope this makes sense.