I'm trying to find the correct way to read and understand the dimensions of a 3D printer. For example, if I read the following dimensions for the Robo 3D R1 Plus as 10x9x8 Inch - I want to know what 10 stands for (does it mean print height?), 9 (depth?), and 8 (width?); etc. I'm not sure if I'm assuming correctly.

I know this should be simple, but I'm not sure where to reference the proper ordering, respective to each aforementioned dimension.


While looking at Makerbot's Replicator technical specifications, I see them listing their dimensions as follows:

Build Volume

29.5 L X 19.5 W X 16.5 H CM
[11.6 X 7.6 X 6.5 IN]

So, if I'm reading this correctly, can I infer that 11.6 IN is referring to the length/depth, 7.6 IN is referring to the width, and 6.5 IN is referring to the height. Would this be the universal/standard way of referring to build specifications for all 3D printers?

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ LWH is a very common order for measurements, but it's not specific to 3D printing at all. $\endgroup$ Commented Sep 25, 2016 at 16:00
  • 2
    $\begingroup$ Typically LWH is transferable to XYZ dimensions in machine tools (3D Printers, Mills, Lathes, Lasers, etc). ie Length=X Distance, Width=Y Distance, Z=Height. $\endgroup$
    – tbm0115
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 14:09
  • $\begingroup$ The 11.6 value, as L, would be the x direction typically, and therefore the left to right as you are facing the machine. W would be the front to back "depth" or y dimension. Your notation of "length/depth" is problematic, I think. $\endgroup$
    – JKEngineer
    Commented Sep 28, 2016 at 18:24
  • $\begingroup$ Just a thought, that it mostly matters to distinguish the Height particularly. Length and Width are somewhat symmetrical - you can re-orientate the print by 90 degrees with little consequence; you usually cannot do that vertically, and it makes a huge difference to the structure of a print if you do. If your printer has a moving bed, the non-symmetry of X and Y might make more of a difference (I don't own a moving-bed printer: does that actually make a difference to your X/Y positioning choices?). $\endgroup$
    – SusanW
    Commented Sep 29, 2016 at 7:24

1 Answer 1


Having the dimensions of your 3D printer ordered in Length x Width x Height is a common way, but nobody actually decided it. I think it has something to do with the 3rd dimension being the "new" dimension for printing things, that's why it's appended at the end. Additionally, the first axis on a 2D-coordinate system usually is the horizontal one, so writing Length x Width makes sense for me. If you are unsure you can always test your printer (if you have one) by writing your own G-Code that moves the printhead on a defined axis.


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