Introduction: Paper Folded Barrel Structure

Picture of Paper Folded Barrel Structure

I was reading along in a great book called Why Buildings Stand Up [Salvadori] and I came across a cool folded paper arch. When properly supported laterally by buttresses, it can support a couple orders of magnitude above its own weight. It also looks great and can be a hat! Here's how to fold it.

Step 1: Start With a Piece of Paper

Picture of Start With a Piece of Paper

Start with a plain 8.5x11. 
Fold into eighths along the long direction.
Then fold 14 diagonals in the opposite direction, using the ends of the first folds as guides.
I made poor creases on the first try (they didn't align with the edges of the first set of creases), but then had much better success using a pencil and a straightedge.

Step 2: Taking Shape

Picture of Taking Shape

As you complete the diagonal creases, the sheet will begin to curl. 
Finish the barrel by encouraging the folds so that the paper curls into a half-circle.
Eventually, it will fold up accordion style into a flat, rotationally symmetric 2D shape.

Have fun!

Awesome thin shell concrete roof:


antonia_bg (author)2017-03-23

Which lines should be folded up and which ones should be folded down?

IanM68 (author)2015-10-28

... And why does a rectangular piece of paper turn into a perfect hexagon?

태영최 (author)2015-04-12

My children will love this. I'm trying it!

foobear (author)2013-06-09

I like it. the book sounds good too

rimar2000 (author)2013-06-05

This is very useful, you can make a bellows whit this method. I need some like this for my workshop. Thanks for sharing.

About This Instructable




Bio: just getting back into Instructables. Hopefully some better projects to come!
More by danielhfourie:Sewing a Mini ParagliderPaper Folded Barrel StructureHow to True a (really wonked) Wheel
Add instructable to: