LEGO Ruler and Sorting Tool

This article is the second in the series about buying and selling used Lego.

I don’t know about you, but I can easily distinguish a 1×2 from a 1×3 at a glance, but I can’t tell the size of larger parts without counting the studs. Technic axles are even harder to tell apart at a glance since they don’t have visible studs. When I started sorting through my craigslist collection, I looked online to find a printable guide to help sort the various lengths of Technic Beams and Axles. I found a simple tool which I used for a while, but knew I could make something better.

My printable Lego sorting tool and ruler

My printable Lego sorting tool and ruler

Figuring that I could improve on the design, I have created the following printable tool to help you sort your Lego bricks. It has been enhanced to show Technics angled pieces, the basic dimensions of a Lego brick, and includes two rulers along the edges of the paper.

Lego sorting guide and ruler in use

Lego sorting guide and ruler in use

To measure a plate, align it with the lower-left corner to see its width and height. To measure the height of a part, use the ruler on the right edge of the printout.

Measuring dimensions of a Plate using the included ruler.

Measuring dimensions of a Plate using the included ruler.

Directions to make your own Lego sorting tool and ruler:

  1. Download my Lego sorting tool and ruler (version 1.1)
  2. Make sure to print it at “100%” scaling factor. I designed it to fit on both an 8.5×11 inch (US) and European A4 Paper.
  3. If you have access to a laminating machine, laminate the page to make it more rigid and durable. If not, try to print it on thick paper or cardstock.
I hope you find this tool helpful. Liked it? Pin this to your wall or share it with your friends. If you have ideas how to make it better, let me know by leaving a comment below!

You may also like...

28 Responses

  1. Tom Alphin says:

    There is an enthusiastic discussion about this Lego Ruler and Sorting tool at bricksetforum…


  2. Ian says:

    Tom, do you have a vector graphic format of this available? I’d like to use it with my laser engraver to make a slightly more sturdy version… and maybe something with enough depth that I can drop the Technic axles into a slot to measure.

  3. Larry says:

    Ian – take a look at this ruler. It has slots for Technic axles and works beautifully with all Lego. It’s made by Lego but very hard to find. I have a few of them and use them all the time.

  4. Pixopath says:

    Ian, a PDF file is a vector graphic file, just try to open it in Illustrator.

  5. Mayalison says:

    Hey Tom, I really liked your initiative to do a Lego challenge. I bought the set and I’m thinking in trying a project as yours, but weekly. 🙂

  6. Jennifer says:

    ok so my son has over 10k in Legos. I live in Kc and can’t seem to find anyone to buy incomplete sets. Would anyone know where to sell? Or should I start sorting? Do you take sets Apart? I don’t have some books to go with sets. Help!!!

    • Julianne says:

      Hi Jennifer,
      You can sell anything on It allows you to state whether it is new or used, and what is missing (such as the instructions, box, stickers and so on).

  7. Thank you so much for this chart!!!! My husband and I have been looking everywhere for one of these. You have done a wonderful job on it and we are so appreciative of your time and effort in making this chart. Thank you again!!!!!

  8. AK says:

    Thank you man

    Awesome work!!!

    Thanx for sharing

    May your god loves you and the people you care for!

  9. Victor says:

    Thanks. Great chart!

  10. Tee says:

    Thanks! This graph also helps me organize the beams and axles.

  11. Axel Andersen says:

    Thanx! You just saved me 3 hours of support 🙂

    Mindstorms is cool, but there is no ruler in the box.

    • Tom Alphin says:

      Axel, Glad to hear that the ruler is helpful. I have two copies in the house, both laminated. One is upstairs with the LEGO collection, and another is in the office by the computer!

  12. Boston says:

    You are freaking awesome, Tom!! Thank you!

  13. Mike says:

    Any tips on wheels and rims? Thanks!

  14. Joe says:

    This is SO useful, thank you so much!

  15. Jana says:

    This is fantastic. Thank you for putting it up.

  16. Bill says:

    I’m so glad that I found your measuring tool for the Lego technic axles. I’m going to tell others that I know that are into Lego to check out your printable ruler for Lego.

  17. Oh my goodness, this is sooooo useful! Wish I had run across it years ago! 🙂

  18. Daniel Gladstone says:

    Is there any tool for Angle Bricks

  19. Michael says:

    Does anyone have (or want to create) a 3d print model Tom’s tool? More common these days than a laser engraver.

    Or does anyone have a 3d print model of the tool here:

    I saw a few but they are one-dimensional stud counters.

    I don’t do a lot of technics, so I don’t need that reference as much. Am considering what else would be useful as a 2D or 3D print reference.

  20. Tanner says:

    Thanks so much!!! This is going to be a super handy guide to have on hand.

  21. James Pretzsch says:

    awesome, thanks
    works perfectly for me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please solve this math problem * Time limit is exhausted. Please reload CAPTCHA.