Make a Simple Paper Slide Rule




Introduction: Make a Simple Paper Slide Rule

About: Engineer, Author, and Amateur Scientist

How to make a simple paper slide rule.

Step 1: Download and Print

You need to download the PDF image of the slide rule from or from link below.  Print the page on paper as thick as your printer can handle.

Step 2: Everything Else You Need

You will also need:
Piece of thin clear plastic 1 by 5 inches

Step 3: Cut Out the Parts

Carefully cut along the solid lines to make the body and slide.

Step 4: The Body and Slide

Step 5: Fold the Body Parts

Fold back along dotted lines to form top and bottom scales.

Step 6: Insert the Slide

Insert the slide. You might need to slightly trim the slide or adjust the folds so that the slide is free to move back and forth.

Step 7: Draw the Cursor

Draw a fine line down the center of the clear plastic.

Step 8: Fold the Plastic

Fold the plastic up about 1 inch from the end. Fold towards the side with the line.

Step 9: Fold Plastic Around Body and Tape

Fold the plastic around the body and tape in back. It should be free enough to slide back and forth also.

Step 10: Finished

Your slide rule is ready to use. In the photo the C and D scales are set to multiply 25 times 2.

2 People Made This Project!


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8 years ago on Introduction

Great work. I would prolly make one if I didn't still have my original engineering slide rule in it's carrying case. Is that not sad. LOL

Phil B
Phil B

Reply 3 years ago

A widow gave me her husband’s K & E engineering slide rule. It has some discolorations because it was kept in the case for many years, and the metal frames around the cursor glasses had corroded away. Discussions on good slide rules say the case is not friendly to a good slide rule over time.


5 years ago

I made mine out of butter board so it would last longer

it still works!!!!!


6 years ago

This is just what I was looking for. I teach 4th grade math and some of my students are struggling with multipication and division. I was hoping to find a simple slide rule I could print out and this will fit the bill nicely. I suspect all my students will want to have their own. I have a feeling something old is about to become very cool again.


This would be a great way for schools to teach the lost art of math in your head. The students could even assemble it them selves.