Introduction: How to Make the Starfighter Paper Airplane
Fast, small and long range, the Starfighter is a nimble "drone fighter" paper airplane. The Starfighter is designed as an alternative to the comparable Fang paper airplane.
The Starfighter was designed quickly, retaining the airframe design of the Turbo Meteor, which has proven quite capable in that design and the Fang previously. The wing design for the Starfighter, on the other hand, is new. Flight testing was uneventful, as the aircraft showed itself to be quite stable and otherwise docile. I cleared it for publication after the completion of testing and seeing this good handling.
Some potential experiments possible with this airframe include:
- Glide ratio
- Weight and balance
- Hangtime versus other aircraft
- How surface inequality can affect aircraft (geometry/shape studies)
- Physics experiments
TAA USAF Designation: D374-1
Step 1: Materials
1 Piece of 8 by 10.5 inch graph paper
Step 2: Begin Construction
Fold your paper in half so that half a box is at the crease line. Make two marks 10 boxes from one another and mark out the fuselage as shown. The counterweight should be made as a 2 by 3 rectangle, with canards and the vertical stabilizer behind it.. Measure 1 box forward along the half box line and and make a mark; then make a solid horizontal line 5 boxes from it as shown.
After the fuselage is made, take another sheet of paper that is folded in half along the lines of boxes. Mark out the wing as shown (1 boxes in length by 6 boxes in width, and a swept portion in front of this box of 3 boxes of span eliminated every 4 boxes of chord toward the front of the fuselage). Then cut the wing out.
Solid lines indicate places to cut. Dotted lines indicate fold lines.
Note: 1 box = 0.25 inches
Step 3: Making the Fuselage
Cut out your fuselage and fold its counterweights into place. Cut off the extra vertical fin. Once this is done, fold along the vertical dotted line and cut along the solid horizontal line. Once the cut has been made, undo the fold. Fold down the canards and tape where designated.
Step 4: Applying the Wings; Taping and Stapling
Cut out the wings, pull the wing through the slit in the fuselage, and then apply tape. Fold the winglets along the dotted lines. Flatten the wings and canards to where they have no anhedral deflection. Apply one staple in the area of the counterweight folds. This will complete your Starfighter .
Step 5: Flight
Like the similar Fang, the Starfighter is quite forgiving and stable in flight. Launches should be done at neutral or positive attitudes at medium to high speed. Launches can be done at a positive attitude, but launch speed should be increased (range may be reduced). Additional applicable surfaces include slats, flaps, flaperons, elevators, ailerons, spoilers, spoilerons, air brakes and a trimmable rudder. Enjoy!