Paper Airplane Contest 5 (Closed)

Although my previous PAC4 competition failed to attract any entries, I have decided to reboot it—with relaxed specifications. Paper Airplane Contest 5 (PAC5) takes a step back, decreasing the minimum range requirement by 10%, and the decreasing the longevity requirement by 33%. I specifically designed this contest to appeal to the concerns of those who analyzed the specifications of PAC4.

For this contest, the specification is again for a long range plane.


1. Aircraft Requirements:
• Ability to fly at least 50 feet from a launch height of 5 feet or higher
• Durability to fly at least 20 flights
• Provisions for landing gear and/or skids (not required for flying wings)
• Use of less than 8 inches of Scotch tape in construction
• Use of less than 3 pieces of 8.5 by 11 inch (A4) paper in construction
• Usage of glue or wood (excluding toothpicks) is prohibited
• Aircraft must be named

2. Instructables Requirements:
• 1 page strictly devoted to materials required in construction
• 1 page explaining how to fly the aircraft
• The instructable's license must be: "Attribution Non-commercial Share Alike (by-nc-sa)"
• This sentence and link must be displayed on your entry's intro page:
“This instructable is an entry in Paper Airplane Contest 5 (http://www.instructables.com/community/Paper-Airplane-Contest-5/)”

For this contest I will award the publishers of the top 5 performing paper airplanes* one patch each.
However, unlike previous contests, each patch will feature its respective aircraft, rather than medals. The first place winner will also receive a 3 month Instructables Pro membership.

*Multiple entries are allowed. To keep the distribution of patches wide however, each entrant can only win one prize.

How to Enter:
To enter this contest, you must send me a private message entitled “My Paper Airplane [Member Name Here]” with your instructable's URL included. I will then put the link and author's name onto a list on this topic under "Entries".

For this contest, I have decided that I will judge all the planes myself based on abilities. I have decided this way because I believe judging on performance rather than shape is a more objective approach.

The contest begins Friday, May 27, 2011 and ends Thursday, June 30, 2011. Entries must be published before Thursday, June 30, 2011. From July 1 to July 3, I will be judging all entries. I will announce the winners of the contest on Tuesday, July 5, 2011 and issue them their prizes Wednesday, July 6, 2011.


DJ Radio:
"Super Bullet" (http://www.instructables.com/id/The-Super-bullet-Possibly-the-fastest-paper-air/)

The Skinnerz:

"The 50 Calb."


1st Place:

“The 50 Calb.”

2nd Place:

“DJ Radio”:
“Super Bullet”

3rd Place:

“The Skinnerz”

Picture of Paper Airplane Contest 5 (Closed)
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OrigamiAirEnforcer (author) 5 years ago
Contest Results:

1. The 50 Calb. was a very stable airplane. The 50 Calb. proved to be the easiest paper airplane to make, owing to its great commonality with the Super OmniDelta. In flight testing, the aircraft proved quite durable. Lastly, with its numerous expanses, several surfaces are available for additional control surfaces. A great new variation of the Super OmniDelta with potential for further development too!

2. The Super Bullet was an airplane that was suited fairly well for fast flight. Because of this though, it relied solely on its energy transferred upon launch. It had no wings to contribute lift, and was only perhaps a lifting body. As a result, its range was directly limited by the amount of energy transferred. Ultimately, what kept it from flying into first place were the crash characteristics--which led to poorer flights later in testing. However, its potential for high speed and overall design makes it a seemingly ideal, conformal pod—a development I plan on experimenting with in the future.

3. The Goose was the very distinct aircraft of the contest. Unlike its competitors, the Goose used all paper allotted, and had a wing and tailplane. The only surface missing were vertical fins. Although the Goose was a somewhat conservative design, its relative complexity proved to be its Achilles’ heel. The many cuts and separate parts required lead to an intricate airplane, which had a significant portion of its weight aft of the wing. To compensate for this, several paper clips were placed on the wing to bring the CG forward. Although the Goose was a neat, sleek airplane, it ultimately lost out to its challengers. Nonetheless, it was still an awesome entry that obviously received quite a bit of thought in designing.

I'd like to thank the people who entered the contest. Its very obvious that each entrant put quite a bit of thought in how to approach the requirements. Prizes will be issued tomorrow, Wednesday, July 6th, 2011.
DJ Radio5 years ago
omg second place!
Goodhart5 years ago
I don't think I will get to even finish my last project by June 30th, much less start this.....things have been....busy, to say the least.
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  Goodhart5 years ago
Ah but, there is another opportunity already: PAC6: (http://www.instructables.com/community/Paper-Airplane-Contest-6/)! :D 
LOL yeah, I can hardly get a simple one to fly, I can see me attempting to fold an origami a-plane. I could probably get a wadded up piece of paper to fly much further then anything I have "folded" :-)
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  Goodhart5 years ago
Well, PAC6 is actually geared toward simpler planes for use as trainers--so perhaps there may be a chance for you to look into your papercrafting skills...
Goodhart5 years ago
I am still finishing up my LED project.....I will see what I can do after tomorrow...
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  Goodhart5 years ago
That's good, hope your project goes well.
I hit a few "snags" (you'll get that little joke if and when I get my ible published LOL) and have to delay publishing until later...
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author) 5 years ago
Paper Airplane Contest 6 (PAC6) or "Next Generation Trainer (NGT)", has begun: (http://www.instructables.com/community/Paper-Airplane-Contest-6/).
heavyfire885 years ago
Have you made a typo by saying " Ability to fly at least 50 feet from a launch height or 5 feet or higher " or really, can I throw it from an apartment ? :D
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  heavyfire885 years ago
Yes and yes. The first "or" should have been an "of", and yes, an apartment is alright, but it must still be able to make 50 feet from a launch height of 5 feet.
But sir... A glider ( or in other words - a slope soarer ) soars slopes :D So if you dont have a really good slope, your plane will probably be ineffective againts a dart.
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  heavyfire885 years ago
Technically, all of my planes are gliders (darts included), and they have never needed slopes--(which I assume are in regards to walk-along aviation).

Generally, I've found darts are less effective than gliders, with higher wing loading and shorter ranges.
Dude, technically speaking sucks -.- Gliders use their wings to fly while you can throw a dart with your all force. And you cant throw a glider with a big force. It wont fly.
You can transfer a lot of kinetic energy to your dart. And it will simply pierce through air.
But you can transfer a lot of kinetic energy to a glider. You need to transfer your kinetic energy to potential energy. And your glider will transfer it slowly to kinetic energy while flying.
At heigts, a glider has the advantage since height has nearly no effect on a dart, especially when dart starts to dive at a 90 degree angle.
On ground, darts have the advantage.
So I am trying to say that if the contest is about "which goes further", building a glider is no use. But if it uses the feet limit ( 50 feet ), then how you are going to select the winner ? You know, there can be two planes that overhelm the limit ?
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  heavyfire885 years ago
Generally, darts only have a speed advantage. Range is usually something gliders excell at at most any altitude.

Darts also face many problems that gliders don't as a rule. For one, darts are rarely tough and get damaged easily. Second, they rely solely on brute force with wind usually being a hinderance, rather than an assistance like it is for gliders. Finally, darts tend to stall quickly.

In the event of a tie, with two or more entries being able to fulfill all specifications, the contest will go into a runoff.
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author) 5 years ago
If you have any questions about the contest, make sure to leave a comment!
Goodhart5 years ago
I've built metal detectors, sine wave generators, and various test devices from scratch or schematics......but for the life of me, I can not make a paper airplane that flies if my life depended on it......luckily I didn't go into areonomics as a career LOL
If I could rise above my knex and halo self and post an airplane I think you can too...
I can post any one of the many I have tried to make, but none of them have ever "flown" :-) I've made paper go further by wadding it up and tossing it LOL
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  Goodhart5 years ago
...are you sure you can't...? It seems like a pretty solid resume to me.
I can try again I suppose, but every plane I have ever folded that I remember, from little on up, for the past 48+ years either nose dived immediately or went UP and stalled and then crashed.....I'm a better cook then I am a paper airplane folder :-)
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  Goodhart5 years ago
Eh, that seems to be trim work there, albeit that also takes time and concentration.
I even messed up a really simple model rocket once....it took off, flew 20 feet in the air, did two loop-de-loops and embedded itself into the ground, then tried to pop the parachute out, and exploded :-)
lemonie5 years ago

For my interest, how would you judge the planes' abilities?
Do you intend to build them all and test them 20x?

OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  lemonie5 years ago
That is correct.
What if you get over 9000 entries?
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  DJ Radio5 years ago
Then I'd be happy, but I might need to extend the judging period slightly... :P
Good, because I'm going to enter one. Just a little tip, throw mine as hard as you possibly can.
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  DJ Radio5 years ago
Great, looking forward to seeing it! :)
Almost done with it, just have to wait for some images to upload, then tagging and posting of course. I can get a video of me throwing it tomorrow at the earliest.
aarij0075 years ago
I don't understand how to enter in this competition. Can you please explain again. I'll be really thankful.
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  aarij0075 years ago
To enter this competition you:
  1. design a plane,
  2. post an instructable on it,
  3. and PM me with the ible's URL, its name and your intentions.
Are there any regulations as to the weight of paper allowed? Can heavy stuff like card be used, or lightweight fax paper, or is it restricted to normal printer paper?
That's a good question, and yes, regular 8.5 by 11 inch (A4) paper is the only type of paper allowed, per Aircraft Requrement #5. The thickness and weight are what necesitated this standard.

By this, I mean, A4 paper is allowed and may be cut, so long as it maintains its weight and thickness.
One more thing:

Are other bits of common stationary such as staples and paper-clips, still allowed, as in previous contests?
Yes. Staples are permitted, and so are paper clips (though the size must be made clear).
Thanks for the quick reply to clear that up.
heavyfire885 years ago
I think you have designed that "PAC5" amblem in paint. dsfgf :D
OrigamiAirEnforcer (author)  heavyfire885 years ago
That would be correct. The emblem was indeed made in MS Paint. :P