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Parallel Line Drawing Tool (Parametric)

by CodeCreations, published

Parallel Line Drawing Tool (Parametric) by CodeCreations Oct 4, 2012


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15245Views 2632Downloads Found in Learning


This is a fully parametric parallel line drawing tool you can use in the classroom or at home to quickly and easily draw things that require consistently-spaced parallel lines, including musical staffs, tablature (TAB), guitar chord diagrams, etc, as well as handy things for math like Cartesian coordinate graphs and multiplication tables.

If you know a music or math teacher, or even a mathemusician, ask them how wide their writing implements are and how far apart they like their lines, and you've got a great gift idea.

The OpenSCAD file is fully parametric, well-commented, and easy to modify. You can change the number of lines, the distance apart, pen diameter, pen grip length and thickness, amount the grip "wraps", extension from handle, extension thickness, handle height/thickness/length, and even handle curve radius.

With a little tweaking of the parameters, you can set it up for chalk/blackboards, street chalk, pencils, different dry erase markers, crayons, or just about any other cylindrical writing implement.

I plan to add a keyhole-style mounting system because it also seems to serve quite well as a pen holder -- and if you hold the pens at the cap, you'll never forget to recap them because they won't stay held if you don't.


The default settings (and the STL) are set for the ubiquitous Expo dry erase markers, spaced 30mm apart. Modify these parameters and re-render for other things like chalk, crayons, pencils, etc.

1) Print.

2) Snap the writing implements into place.

3) Hold the jig between your thumb and index finger, and pull it across the surface to draw the lines.

The example pictured (printed from the STL) used only about 1.4m of 3mm filament (about US$0.25) and holds up nicely printed with two perimeters, two solid layers, 10% infill, and 0.4mm layer height.

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By any chance do you know if there is something similar to the Stravigor http://www.antikeychop.com/stravigor or the Nolligraph https://www.amazon.com/Noligraph-5-line-Staff-Liner-Pickboy/dp/B0046S0O4E?
Thanks .

Hi, I had one of this printed and had a little trouble keeping all the pens touching the board at the same time, as well as holding them in the tool for that matter. They'll fall off if I try to add a gentle pressure in order to make them all touch the board, so I figured it was due to the default clampHeight. When I changed clampHeight, it also seemed to be generated from that same z value upwards, rather than calculate a proper z value so that it would be vertically centered on the frames.

So I made a remix in order to tweak that and added a bar at the top to make sure all the pens touch the board at the same time. As I'm using a white board mounted on wheels, I thought I'd add hooks for hanging the whole thing on top of it as well. Haven't printed it yet, but here it is. Hope it's okay. :)


Parametric Jig for Music Staff


Hi, nice tool! I've a question , I'm looking for a tool with 6 lines . Can you fix that for me?
Thanks, Suzan

You should see an "Open In Customizer" link now -- you can change lots of parameters, including the number or lines. Enjoy!

I need something like this for an invention convention project. Does it have a patent??

I did not patent it.

All the teachers had one of these when I was in grade school, but they held chalk. I don't think dry erase was invented yet, or photocopiers.

Yeah, I've seen them use pinstriping tape, too, but I've always been fond of this approach. 

Remember the mimeographs? :) 

 Mmmmm.... fresh mimeograph smell!