Abstract Aligned large-scale deposition of nanowires grown in a bottom-up manner with high yield is a persisting challenge but required to assemble single-nanowire devices effectively. Contact printing is a powerful strategy in this regard but requires so far adequate adjustment of the tribological surface interactions between nanowires and target substrate, e.g. by microtechnological surface patterning, chemical modifications or lift-off strategies. To expand the technological possibilities, we explored two-directional pressure-controlled contact printing as an alternative approach to efficiently transfer nanowires with controlled density and alignment angle onto target substrates through vertical-force control. To better understand this technology and the mechanical behavior of nanowires during the contact printing process, the dynamic bending behavior of nanowires under varying printing conditions is modeled by using the finite element method. We show that the density and angular orientation of transferred nanowires can be controlled using this three-axis printing approach, which thus enables potentially a controlled nanowire device fabrication on a large scale.