Limit WordPress Post excerpt to specific physical size

My theme is a magazine style layout. On the front page, I have four columns that each show a preview of the most recent post from four different categories.

I would like for all of the excerpts to fill the allotted space and to display the <more...> link.

It is easy enough to set up a widget that posts a specific number of words, but because words come in many different sizes, I may have two excerpt that each contain 30 words, but one may take up five lines and the one next to it seven.

I can make a div to display the excerpt with the overflow set to hidden, but that hides the <more...> link at the end.

How can I make my post previews fill a specific space so that they each match each other?Desired outcome
LVL 26
David BruggeAsked:
Who is Participating?
Immanuel KumarPHP DeveloperCommented:
Hi,put this code in the template function.php

function string_limit_words($string, $word_limit)
  $words = explode(' ', $string, ($word_limit + 1));
  if(count($words) > $word_limit)
  return implode(' ', $words);

and call this in your display page.

  $excerpt = get_the_excerpt();
  echo string_limit_words($excerpt,25);
Thank You
Jason C. LevineNo oneCommented:
Try switching to a character count solution:

<?php $little_excerpt = substr(the_excerpt(),0,X); ?>
David BruggeAuthor Commented:
Sorry for the delay. This one slipped past me.
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