Introduction: Origami Crystal Sculpture

Picture of Origami Crystal Sculpture

Hi and welcome to my very first Instructable!

Disclaimer: I accept no responsibility for anything you break in frustration while making this model.
If you have never folded any origami before, I would recommend starting with something easier, like a crane or a box. :)

This is a modification of a model by Daniel Kwan, the diagrams (of the original) are in the Origami Tanteidan magazine, volume 106.
With that said, all the instructions are in Japanese, and are probably illegible to 95% of the Instructables reader base.

What you will need:

1. Patience
2. 3 sheets of A4 paper. 
3. Guillotine/blade/scissors (depends how accurately you can cut!)
4. Glue (optional)
5. Good music
6. Patience. I'm being serious.

Ok lets get started! 

Step 1: Cutting Out the Paper

Picture of Cutting Out the Paper

Ok, so first things first. 

Put on some groovy tunes to keep you going!

Plain bland common or garden variety white A4 looks dreadfully boring. You are going to be spending a lot of time on this model, you want it to look as good as possible.
If you have a printer nearby, print a nice design on the one side of your pages. Black and white geometric patterns work nicely, but go for whatever floats your boat.

Mark off 10 intervals of 2cm each on the SHORT end of your A4.

You will have about half a cm left over, dont stress, you gonna chuck that away.

Cut the paper ACCURATELY (I mean it) into 10 strips of 2cm wide, and 29.7 cm long (the length of an A4 page). Do this for all 3 pages, giving you a total of 30 strips.

Step 2: More Markings

Picture of More Markings

Now that you have your strips, mark off a line 2.5 cm from either end. Do your markings on the white side of the paper, for obvious reasons.
Mountain fold this little flap so that the printed surfaces are touching each other (see photo if you don't understand).
Don't worry about the lines in the paper, those are coming now.

Step 3: The Folding Begins...

Picture of The Folding Begins...

Valley fold the paper in half lengthways.
This is MUCH easier said than done.

I found the easiest way to do this is to fold the 2 corners together, crease a little bit, match up the edges, crease a little bit more, match up edges again, crease more etc etc all the way along the length of the paper.

You are welcome to use whatever method, but I can almost guarantee that this is the only way you will get an accurate STRAIGHT fold all the way through the center of your paper.

The printed side should be on the outside (see photo).

Step 4: Prelim Folds

Picture of Prelim Folds

Ok, unfold the previous step, and now fold both long edges into the middle line that you just made using the same method.
Once again, printed side on the outside.
Good luck. 
This is harder than it looks. MAKE SURE IT"S ACCURATE!!

Step 5: On We Go

Picture of On We Go

Unfold. Should look like this.

You will notice that all those folds are in the same direction. If yours aren't, go back and make sure that they are all folding inwards.

Step 6: Warming Up...

Picture of Warming Up...

Ok things are starting to get exciting.

Valley fold the BOTTOM RIGHT corner to the MIDDLE CREASE LINE, as shown on the photo.
MAKE SURE that the fold you are making now crosses the middle crease exactly where your previous crease (at 2.5cm) crosses the midline.

There should be 3 creases intersecting at 1 spot; the middle line, your horisontal crease at 2.5cm, and your oblique crease that you just made now.

If you don't understand, I can't explain it any better than that. Just do it and see what happens.

The easiest is to use your nail (or any sharp object), hold it on that center spot where the creases intersect, and get your flap in place around that. Then you know that you will be folding around the correct axis.

See the photos on the next 2 steps to check the creases if you are still confused.

Step 7: ...

Picture of ...

Unfold the previous fold.

Fold the bottom line up to the oblique crease you just made.
Match the left vertical crease to the point where the oblique fold intersects the left crease. NOT ALL THE WAY TO THE 2.5CM LINE!!
See the photo if you are confuzzled.

Line up the vertical creases to make sure you are accurate.

DONT fold the whole piece of paper, ONLY the most right hand 1/4. This is just to mark off a distance. Check the photos.

Step 8: ...

Picture of ...

Push the right hand side of your model in, and make a flap along the creases you have just make, as shown on the photo.

This is why it's necessary to have the oblique line intersect where your other 2 folds meet.

The model will now start becoming 3D.

Step 9: ...

Picture of ...

Fold the right hand side 1/4 over, preserving your previous fold. I'm holding the model sideways, so its the top 1/4 in the photo.

Step 10: ...

Picture of ...

Do the same on the other side, except that step 8 is now folded on the outside of the model, not the inside. You'll see. Just follow the creases that have already been made.

Should now look like this.

Step 11: Repeat

Picture of Repeat

Do the same on the other end of your model.
It will now look like this. (notice the nice bent ends!)

Step 12: ...

Picture of ...

Fold from the center line to the outside of your crease you marked off earlier. This is important, make sure you are accurate with this one.
Note that this is on the RIGHT hand side. It appears to be on the left because the model is now upside down. Just make sure you do it on the same side as the photos, otherwise you will kick yourself later. I warned you.

Step 13: Reverse!

Picture of Reverse!

Unfold that fold and reverse it.

Step 14: Tuck

Picture of Tuck

Tuck the little flap underneath the other side.

Step 15: ...

Picture of ...

Fold the top corner down to the middle line as shown on the photo. If you can't get it exactly to the middle line, don't stress.
Get it as close as you can (don't fold the flap you tucked in in the previous step).

Step 16:

Picture of

Pinch the end along the middle line to crease the little flap made in step 14.

Step 17:

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Repeat on the other side of the model. 
Well done, first one completed!
Should look like this.
Make 30.

Step 18:

Picture of

Ok well done!
If you've had the patience to get this far, you're 90% of the way there.
Now comes the exciting bit!
Up till now you've been making the puzzle pieces, now you get the satisfaction of putting the puzzle together...

The small flap of one model fits into the reverse fold of the next model, as shown on the photo. 

NOTE: Here is where your optional glue comes in.
This model "will" hold together without glue, but it is much sturdier when glued.
However, if you use glue this is then technically no longer origami (yes, I'm a purist).

If you decide to use glue of some sort, apply a SMALL drop/smear on both sides of the small flap before inserting it into the reverse fold.

Attach the opposite ends in the same fashion.


Step 19:

Picture of

Attach 5 of these in a ring, on both sides.
Here is your first crystal!

Step 20:

Picture of

Ok, the tricky bit starts now.
Fold a second crystal, and weave it into the first one in the manner shown on the photo.

I'm going to do my best to explain the way these little guys fit together.

Each crystal has 5 "pillars". When 2 crystals intersect,  there is 1 pillar on the outside, and 2 pillars in each of the 2 segments between pillars. The other crystal then has 1 pillar on the outside of the first one, on the opposite side. This is the only way 2 crystals can intersect each other symmetrically and at right angles.
This principle applies for any number of new crystals being added, each new crystal MUST intersect ALL the others in this manner.
This is a difficult concept to grasp, but it is essential for understanding how to fit these things together.

I have also attached a photo of the diagrams from the Tanteidan magazine, in case you are able to find them more useful than my instructions.

Step 21:

Picture of

Great! 
Well done.

A word of warning. The following couple of steps are tricky. RESIST THE URGE to throw your carefully folded pieces on the floor and jump on them. You will be tempted. Take a break and make a cup of tea if necessary.

Add a third crystal, in the same pattern (1 outside, 2 inside, 2 inside, 1 outside). Make sure the new crystal you are putting in follows this pattern for BOTH of the crystals that are already there.

Step 22:

Picture of

Add a fourth crystal in the same manner. Remember to check that it meets the criteria for ALL 3 of the crystals that are already in place.

I found that the easiest way to do this is to check each piece as I put it in, in a systematic manner with each of the crystals that are already in place to make sure that I haven't put a piece in the wrong place. This can be confusing, just make sure you check each piece as you put it in.

Step 23:

Picture of

Ok crystal number 5!
You're getting close, don't give up!
This is the most difficult one.
By now you should be getting a feel for the way everything fits together. 
Same principles, but by now it's impossible to just stick things in at random. You will start to notice the symmetry, but the nice pattern of 5 overlapping pillars (as you can see on the diagram) will only be complete on 2 sides of the model, the other 5 sides need the 6th crystal to complete.

Check each crystal in order when you stick a pillar in to make sure it follows the 1-2-2-1 rule for each and every pillar.
If it doesn't, pull it out and stick it in a different spot.
Sticking these things in by now is hard, because the pillars aren't straight. I found a tweezer very helpful in pulling them through the tight holes.
If you straighten out a pillar by mistake, open up the folds and redo step 8 to make sure the angle is correct.
BE CAREFUL!

Good luck is all I can say.

Step 24:

Picture of

Woohoo final pillar!
This one is easy, by now you should clearly be able to see where she goes :)

Take a squiz at the nice pentagonal pattern on the photo. That has to form TWICE for each pillar you put in now, in the center of each of the other crystals.

Two of them are already formed, around the axis of where you will be putting this final crystal in place.

Step 25: Well Done!

Picture of Well Done!

Pat yourself on the back, take a photo of your achievement, and go get some fresh air.

Well done.



Hope you guys enjoyed my first instructable! Let me know if you enjoyed making this sculpture!
J

Comments

Bobby Sarito (author)2015-06-22

Hello,

If anyone is interested about the original diagram, I found it online (along with the rest of the magazine issue):

https://drive.google.com/folderview?id=0B7vtCu1MKR...

Oh, and thanks joettle for putting up the instructions to damn amazing designs.

Thanks.

No, seriously, thanks a lot.

You're like a gold mine of diagrams.

Thanks

torstenp16 (author)2012-11-18

amazing! I MUST try this sometime... that is, if I ever get the time!

joettle (author)torstenp162013-02-20

You should try it, as far as I know nobody else has done it yet...

joettle (author)torstenp162012-11-19

Another Escher fan I see :)

LauraLauraLynn (author)2012-11-18

That is totally awesome!! I really like origami!

joettle (author)LauraLauraLynn2013-02-20

Thanks! Give it a go and post a picture!

diegofenner (author)2012-11-18

I will try this on vacation :)
But I guess that an easy way to fold it straight. Use a good ruler?
great tut.

joettle (author)diegofenner2012-11-19

You can try, but you will need a very thin ruler, since the paper tends to make 2 folds along the edge of the ruler... perhaps to give you a guideline crease? Let me know if it works :)

craftyv (author)2012-11-18

I love your work and and can't wait to have a try at this one. I only like origami that makes geometric shapes, not keen on frogs, cranes and so on although they are probably good to learn how to fold. Your choice of paper is good (looks Escher-ish) . The snippets look as if they are in fact crystal and reflections. Brilliant.

joettle (author)craftyv2012-11-19

Thanks!
You are totally right, it's one of eschers tesselations.
You can play with the paper dimensions, anything longer than 1:5 works, as long as the dimensions of your end flaps are constant at 1:1.25 (2x2.5cm in this case).
You will find that the model itself is adjustable, and you can get several different "looks" by pushing the crystals further in or out.

happy2bmom (author)2012-11-19

Looks great! I need to try this! Thanks for the great instructable!

craftyv (author)2012-11-18

Great Instructable all round.
Comment for all: Work on a plain surface so that the folds etc. stand out from the background. Much clearer to see. Great stuff.

nocount (author)2012-11-18

this is awesome. BUT at what point do i start the music playing? hee hee

joettle (author)nocount2012-11-18

First things first :D

Penolopy Bulnick (author)2012-11-15

That looks kind of complicated, but such an awesome result!!

joettle (author)Penolopy Bulnick2012-11-17

Thanks! Try making it, it takes a lot of time, but it's not as complicated as it looks!

valhallas_end (author)2012-11-15

Very cool - well done! I may have to try this...my old mineralogy text has some images that would look great in origami form...

joettle (author)valhallas_end2012-11-15

Ooo yes great idea.
You can play with the paper dimensions, just not less than 1:5, as long as you keep the dimensions of the end flaps constant (1:1.25).
In theory you should be able to do this with 6 sided crystals, but I haven't tried that yet... Send me a photo if you get it done!

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