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sprite editing questions

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can't belive i've been hanging around here for years and am now about to post newbie questions :-)

i'm trying to finish up my scimitar (chainsaw replacement). it's a f**king big sword and takes up a lot of the screen, so my sprites are all about 256 tall, but they dont all fit on the screen, i was assuming the target screen height was 240, and they would scale to the user's resolution but i think i'm getting it wrong, what size would a weapon sprite need to be to fill the viewport exactly? (not that that's what i want to do but might be useful info)

one of the sprites has artifacts to the top right that arent there in the original BMP, which i converted to the doom pallette manually

plus in my version of XWE the viewport window outline only appears when i give the sprite a negative offset. it also seems like it's trying to outline the viewport and hud to be helpful, but the vertical offsets in relation to that seem to bear little to no similarity to what i actually see (in prBoom or Eternity).

slightly unrelated, my arena maps have orbs you need to collect, but when they are placed on a ledge above the player they dont clip properly and you can still see the bottom half of them through the ledge, hmz, the offset appears to be the bottom of the sprite but i probably don't understand it or something

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