Introduction: Impossible Staircase
The Penrose stairs, also known as the impossible staircase, is a two-dimensional depiction of a staircase in which the stairs make four 90-degree turns as they ascend or descend yet form a continuous loop. Although the staircase is conceptually impossible, it does interfere with your perception since it looks like a person could climb forever and never get any higher.
Watching the video is the easiest way to see how it works. I’ve included a drawing which is linked in the video description.
Step 1: Tools/Materials
- Band Saw
- Tape measure
- Sander (optional)
- Wood 1 x 6 or 1 x 3
- Wood glue
Step 2: Cut First Side
Cut wood as shown in the pictures. I used a table saw for the sections and a band saw for the steps.
Step 3: Cut Second Side
Step 4: Cut Third Side
Step 5: Cut Fourth Side
Step 6: Glue Sides Together
Use a vice or clamps
Step 7: It Should Look Like This When Assembled
Step 8: Highlight Edges
Use a pencil or marker to highlight the step edges. You could also paint the steps as an enhancement.
I used a Canon DSLR camera for the photo and video. It took a few minutes on a tripod to line up the angles. I also had to use manual focus to blend the focus which helps with the illusion.
Step 10: Another Example
If you like this, check out another example