How to decide measurements when customize cardboard tubes for retail packaging?

To customize successful cardboard tube packaging for retail applications, above all, the most important step is to make sure the measurements are all correct.

Why? Incorrect measurements will make the cardboard tube packaging lose its functionality.

4 Dimensions in paper tube packaging

There are usually 4 dimensions to consider when it comes to the measurements of custom paper tubes. They are respectively as below:

1)Inside diameter (ID for short);2)Outside diameter (OD for short);3)Wall thickness;4)Length (Or called height)

#1 Inside diameter

Inside diameter is the actual distance from one end of the inside of the tube to the other end of the inside. Its the longest chord of the circular package that provides available horizontal space relating to products’ LENGTH and WIDTH.

#2 Wall thickness

Cardboard tube packaging are spiral wound from piles (layers) of paper and cardboard. The thickness of the total piles or layers is the wall thickness of the paper tube package. When the number of layers of paper is decided, the wall thickness is decided  from the outset and unchanged.

#3 Outside diameter

Contrary to inside diameter, outside diameter is the total distance from one end of the EXTERIOR of the tube to the other end. Outside diameter (OD) is the total of inside diameter (ID) plus the wall thickness. Lets look at an example below:

ID: 4’’

Wall thickness: 0.13’’

OD = ID + wall thickness + wall thickness

4’’+0.13’’+0.13’’=4.26’’ OD

outside diameter of paper tubes

Except that, try to be age-specific, especially for marijuana packaging such as like vape cartridge packaging, CBD oil dropper bottle packaging. The first consideration for packaging would be child-proof. And a child-resistant cardboard tube packaging should be a must-have.

#4 Length

Length is the total distance from the internal surface of the top cap to the internal surface of the bottom of the tube. This is the ACTUAL available vertical space for your product relating to height.


1)Product length / width (Take whichever is larger) decides the inside diameter (ID); 2)Product height decides the length of the tube.

Therefore, its crucial to provide correct products dimensions (length / width / height) to your cardboard cylinder packaging manufacturers.