How To Make A Paper Model Aircraft: Instructions And Tips

Basic paper airplane-folding steps to help you get started creating and designing your own aircraft.

When making paper airplanes, unless they are a very rare and unique design, you'll need nothing but the paper. There are so many different ways to make a paper plane, but after making some of them, you'll notice that they don't fly that well, indeed, some may even crash immediately to the ground. After learning some basic techniques for making paper planes, you can then experiment and find other designs which give better performance. When making paper airplanes, use paper with a straight edge, not perforated.

One design you do quickly is to fold the top two corners of a paper down until they meet in the middle. Crease well. Now, fold the paper in half, lengthways, the opposite direction as you folded the two corners, creasing well. Take one of the long, straight edges of the paper and fold it up to the middle fold, then turn the paper over and do the same to the other straight edge. Next, take one of the long, straight edges and turn it back up to the fold, creasing, but not excessively. Do the same to the other side. Unfold these newest folds until they stick straight out. Now you're ready to fly. Hold this plane near the nose and throw straight forward. Although this model won't impress you with its distance, it's simple for youngsters to make and will fly enough to allow them some fun.

Another simple design is a dart-like model which is easy to fold and fly. Fold a piece of paper in half, lengthways, crease well, then fold the top two corners down until they meet in the middle. Now fold the long sides of the paper in until they meet in the middle. Then, fold the entire plane in half, lengthways, where no folds are showing. Lay the plane on its side, with the nose pointing to the left. Fold the paper, from slightly above the nose, down. Crease. Repeat on opposite side. Before flying, push these last two folds up slightly to make wings, then toss.

For the more serious paper airplane folder, fold a sheet of paper in half lengthways, and then unfold it again. Fold the two top corners down until they meet in the middle. Do not let them overlap, even slightly. Fold this entire triangle downward from the base of the triangle, towards the valley of the paper. Fold the tip up an inch, and then unfold. Now fold the 2 top corners in until they meet at their points, in the center, then fold the tip up. Now fold the plane in half lengthways, so that your folds can be seen from the outside view. Fold the wings down and you're ready to go.

Another design, although slightly more complicated, can be done by beginning how most paper airplanes begin: Fold the paper in half, lengthways, crease, and fold the two top corners down to meet in the middle. You now have a triangle shape at the top. Fold the tip of the triangle down until it meets the base of the triangle. Now fold the tip of this upside-down triangle until it meets the base of the upside-down triangle. Fold the two raw edges, which are now revealed, until each one touches the base corners of the triangle. Fold top side corners until they meet in the middle. Fold in half down the middle, lengthways, with wings showing on the outside. Lay on table with fold facing up and point facing left. Now fold the top right corner about a third of the way down, and then unfold. Now fold this corner down again, slightly above the first fold. Fold up the triangle corner, then unfold, making the tail section of the plane. Unfold until the plane looks like it did when you laid it down, fold up, onto the table. Fold in half, then fold the fin diagonally and unfold again. Press down the tip between the layers.

As you learn more about folding, you can take basic designs and improve them, or create your own designs. You can also decorate them with colored pencils, and then collect them by the dozens.

© High Speed Ventures 2011