Originally Posted by william
For what its worth, in my opinion Gui builder's are not for novices. More often than not cause many more problems than they are worth, as they skip over the fine grain details and when a problem arises, fixing said problem becomes extremely difficult due to the lack of knowledge of the underlying details. In other words, a gui builder will not fix the underlying problem of the original post.
To the original poster: use an appropriate layout manager (see A Visual Guide to Layout Managers (The Java™ Tutorials > Creating a GUI With JFC/Swing > Laying Out Components Within a Container)
) and become familiar with the API of the classes you use - deprecated methods should be avoided. If you wish to set sizes of a Component, use the appropriate method (setPreferredSize, setMinimumSize, setMaximumSize). In most cases, the appropriate layout manager and call to the appropriate method mentioned should be enough. If not, post an SSCCE of the problem