The AxiDraw Drawing Machine (Legacy version)

[This documentation is for the older-model AxiDraw, sold prior to February 2016 with white Delrin chassis. Click here for current model support.]

Introduction to AxiDraw

Have you ever wanted to be able to draw on box tops, lids, coasters etc. - i.e. any flat object? Well, a flat-bed printer will do, but they're rather expensive.

The AxiDraw® is a 2D plotter which controls a pen (or any other drawing instrument) and allows you to draw on any flat surface. The drawing head extends beyond the machine, making it possible to draw on objects bigger than the machine itself. There is no limitation on the height of the object being drawn on. The AxiDraw® is not just a drawing machine - it will carry out any function where XY control is required.

The AxiDraw® is operated from within Inkscape, an easy-to-use vector graphics program. The actual hardware is controlled by the versatile EiBotBoard, used in many popular robotic products including the EggBot and WaterColorBot.

The AxiDraw® kit can be assembled in under an hour - full assembly videos and information are available on the documentation pages.


  • Precision-made: all of the plastic parts are machined or laser-cut from Delrin engineering plastic. Linear ball bearings are used on the X & Y axes.
  • Maximum travel 180mm (X), 160mm (Y), 10mm (pen)
  • Maximum speed 50mm/s
  • Drawing arm extends from the front of the machine - you're not limited by what can be fitted "inside" the machine
  • Holder accepts pens (or other drawing instruments) up to 16mm diameter
  • Controlled from InkScape using the existing WaterColorBot extensions, which have extensive documentation
  • Uses a standard EiBotBoard, so can be used with all the EBB serial commands.

Don't forget, if you have an example of something interesting you've drawn using your machine, or have modified it in a novel way, you can post photos to the public Flickr group.

About AxiDraw

I first developed the AxiDraw® in early 2014, after buying an EiBotBoard to control some stepper motors and being impressed by how easy it was to use. I realised that there might be interest in a small drawing/plotting machine and subsequently developed a full kit of parts to build the machine.

For any questions or comments about the AxiDraw® machine itself, please contact me (Lindsay Wilson) at If you need help with the WaterColorBot extensions, then please refer to EvilMadScientist's extensive documentation. They also have a great forum dedicated to the WaterColorBot. For information on using Inkscape, please check out their website which has a range of good tutorials.

Make sure you stay up-to-date with any news or product releases - see the bottom of the page for links to YouTube, Google+, Twitter, FaceBook etc. Use the hashtag #axidraw in any of your own posts to identify them. You might also want to check out my other websites and

If you're interested in how some of the AxiDraw's parts are made, see this page.

I'd like to thank both Windell Oskay ( and Brian Schmalz ( for help with the WaterColorBot Extensions and the EiBotBoard, respectively.


All products manufactured by IJ Instruments Ltd. carry a one-year warranty, commencing from the date of purchase, against any manufacturing defects. Should any faults arise within the warranty period, IJ Instruments Ltd. will replace the defective product free of charge.

[Return to Legacy AxiDraw documentation]

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