Introduction: How to Make the StratoFang Paper Airplane

Picture of How to Make the StratoFang Paper Airplane

Fast, long range and nimble, the StratoFang is a tiny drone fighter paper airplane meant to fly at high speed.

The origins of the StratoFang are more of that of a test plane than a drone fighter of its own right. I had wished to explore a canard design reminiscent of the spiroid winglet design now in development. While the objective of the spiroid winglets is improved fuel efficiency due to wing vortex reductions, my interest in the shaping was to improve stability and wing strength. To test my ideas, I decided to modify the StarFang--an existing, proven design. This effort was helped by its unused dorsal fuselage forward of its vertical stabilizer. Using methods previously used in my Sparrow and Moth designs long ago, I made the new canard design. The canards provide additional lift as well as bracing for the wing, increasing its rigidity at high speed.

Flight testing showed the concept to work well and the aircraft capable of being its own drone fighter. With this result, I approved the design for publication. Based on this success, I anticipate application of this new concept in future designs.

TAA USAF Designation: D390-1

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials

Required:
1 Piece of 8 by 10.5 inch graph paper

Tape

Scissors

Ruler

Pencil

Stapler

Step 2: Begin Construction

Picture of Begin Construction

Fold your paper in half so that half a box is at the crease line. Make two marks 8 boxes from one another and mark out the fuselage as shown. The counterweight should be made as a 2 by 3 rectangle with the vertical stabilizer two boxes behind it. Behind the counterweight folds, make the canards as shown by copying all lines as shown. 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. 2.5 boxes from either end of the solid horizontal line, make a vertical, perpendicular dotted line.

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

Picture of Making the Fuselage

Cut out your fuselage and fold its counterweights into place. Cut off the extra vertical fin (but do not damage the canards in doing so). Cut along the solid line depicting the leading edge of the vertical fin and the trailing edges of the canards. 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; Stapling

Picture of Applying the Wings; Stapling

Cut out your wings and fold along the dotted lines made on them earlier. String the wings through the slit made earlier, then apply tape where designated. Apply one staple in the area of the counterweight then apply tape to the struts of the canards at the wings' surfaces as shown. This will complete the aircraft.

Step 5: Flight

Picture of Flight

The StratoFang is very straightforward in its handling and is easily flown; anyone with experience with the Fang or StarFang should have little difficulty transitioning. 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). Test flights should be conducted to see if any trim is required. Additional applicable surfaces include slats, flaps, flaperons, elevators, ailerons, spoilers, spoilerons, air brakes and a trimmable rudder. Enjoy!

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Bio: I am someone who mass produces paper airplanes and am always developing new designs. I post regular updates on Twitter and Google+. Follow me there ... More »
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