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Counter-weight vs Cross-wire Parallel Motion


The choice of which parallel motion is best for you can be a difficult one especially if you are new to using a drawing board. Even if you're not, the type of design work you find yourself doing can allow you to benefit from the differences between them if you choose correctly.

One thing to bear in mind is that the straight edge ruler is the same on both systems. The same wire thickness and Orchard build quality also ensure that you get a professional drawing table whichever model you choose.


To prevent the straight edge dropping to the bottom of the board when being used on an angle, the crosswire features a friction grip which applies a small, even amount of pressure onto the back of the board. On the other hand the counter balance parallel motion relies on its weights, not friction and so the straight edge feels slightly freer to move.


Both systems have exactly the same straight edge and board, in terms of build quality you would not be able to choose between them. The main difference you notice when using the two side-by-side is that the crosswire parallel motion offers slightly more resistance when moving the straight edge.


The crosswire parallel motion features a continuous wire running in an 'X' shape across the back of the board. At each corner the wire runs around a sealed steel roller bearing encapsulated within solid plastic tire. Each wheel is mounted in a protective housing which helps prevent accidental damage to the corners when the board is in transport.

Great for students and professionals alike they provide everything needed for complex design work whist being super portable and durable. The motion of the ruler is smooth and consistent with the steel roller bearings offering reliable and solid turning points for the steel wire.


All of our drawing board tables are made from a hard wearing smooth white MFC, the same material that most modern office desks are made from, but without the fake grain. It provides a firm, consistent drawing surface and a solid fixing for the parallel motion components and stand.


Ultimately we want you to be happy with whichever system you choose. Both are manufactured by us in the UK to exacting standards and are equally capable of producing professional grade drawings (depending upon user capabilities!). You have to decide which suits your style of drawing and take into account any transportation / storage issues, even though we can supply protective carry cases for both types of drawing board.


All of our drawing boards are supplied FULLY ASSEMBLED and ready to use:

Desk Top
Small desk top drawing boards are usually sent on carrier in a box, simply remove the drawing board from its packaging and it is ready to use.

Floor Standing
Floor standing drawing boards are either sent by carrier or by haulier. If sent by carrier your drawing board will arrive in a large box, if is sent by haulier it will arrive fastened to a wooden pallet and wrapped in protective packaging.


Depending upon which drawing board you choose and the overall order quantity, will dictate which transport method will be used. We always optimise to ensure that everything arrives safely and efficiently and we will make sure you are made fully aware of any logistical issues prior to delivery