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Homemade Pantograph Drawing Machine

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Combine science, art and math in this cool pantograph drawing machine project!

Pantograph drawing machine- science art

This project is featured in my new book, Science Art and Drawing Games for Kids!

Have you ever seen a drafting machine?  It is a tool used in technical drawing that rotates. My grandpa used to sketch inventions and blueprints and had this awesome drafting table that I used to just love!  I made a similar type of tool to play around with the kids this week called a pantograph. It is much simpler and made of cardboard, but we have been having a lot of fun with it! Our pantograph drawing machine draws duplicate content but on a larger scale. It works according to the golden ratio in math. It’s pretty cool!

drawing machine

The Pantograph got my kids thinking and wondering about how it works and why the second image is larger than the first. I love the hands-on aspect of it! This activity combines math, art and science all in one!  It is a great STEM education project.



How to Make the Pantograph Drawing Machine

pantograph supplies

Supplies You Will Need:

Corrugated Cardboard
Large Drawing Paper
Metal Brads
1 Thumbtack
Pencils or markers

Cut four strips of cardboard about one inch wide. Cut two of the pieces ten inches long and two of the pieces six inches long. You’ll also need a large square of cardboard for the base. 

drawing machine science art

Connect the two long pieces together at the top with a metal brad.  Make the holes for the brad with a pair of scissors or a utility knife.

In the center of the long pieces connect each of the smaller pieces with metal brads. Overlap the two small pieces at the other end. Put a hole through both pieces for a pencil or marker to go through.  

Poke holes at the bottom of each of the long pieces. The one on the right will hold a pencil or marker. The one on the left will connect with a metal brad to a larger piece of cardboard. 

pantograph science art project

Tape a large piece of paper over a larger piece of cardboard. Connect the pantograph to the bottom left corner of the cardboard with a metal brad.

Insert markers or pencils through the holes on the other two ends. Use the center one to draw. As you draw, the marker on the left will draw the same image, but larger!


How to Make a Pantograph Drawing Machine

Start drawing!

pantograph science art


See what you drew!

pantograph STEM project


The Science Behind This Pantograph Science Art Project:

A pantograph is a simple machine that was used anciently by the Greeks to trace images. There are two pencils that draw identical images, but different sizes. The pantograph uses a lever to move in and out or back and forth as you draw with it. They are used by engineers and artists to reduce or enlarge their drawings.


Now go check out my book!!  Science Art and Drawing Games for Kids



See more STEM ideas in my post on 20 STEM Projects for Kids!


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  1. Thank You Ever So Much !! 😀 I was so looking for a simple pattern for one of these This is an awesome find on the world wide web Thank you again Oh by the way Nice Web Page !

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