Toothpick Bridge Project

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Introduction: Toothpick Bridge Project

The objective of this project was to build a bridge using nothing but school glue and toothpicks. Our teacher have us credit for just simply building a bridge but gave us extra points for every pound it held with the maximum being 30 pounds. 

Step 1:

First thing you would have to do is figure out which bridge design you want to go with for the main part. I decided to go with the Warren (with verticals) design but you should choose one that would be easiest for you or the one you think would hold up the best. I used this paper as reference of the different types of bridges I could build. The one I chose to build is in the third row third column. 

Step 2:

Gather your materials. Any kind of toothpicks will do I got mine from walmart. My teacher made it a requirement to use only school glue so specify with your teacher as to what type of glue you could use.

Step 3:

Start to sketch out your design for the bridge. Make sure to make a sketch for your main bridge and the base that will hold up your bridge. The image depicts the sketch I made for the base of the bridge. I would recommend using grid paper to draw your sketch on so you know that the size and shape will be accurate. I got the print out of the grid paper from  http://donnayoung.org/math/graph-paper.htm and I selected the 30 X 40 one.

Step 4:

Now in this step I would suggest you place wax paper over your design so that you wont have to draw your design again and you wont have to rip your toothpicks off your paper. 

Step 5:

I used a wire cutter to cut all the toothpick pieces accordingly. You will probably need parental supervision to use this tool. Or you could used safety scissors but that will also take longer and be more painful on your hands and might come out uneven. 

Step 6:

Now after building your two sides make two segments that will connect the two pieces together. As you can see in the picture I made part of what was going to connect the two side together and you form an X to make the structure stronger. You can make your two segments as big as you want it just depends how wide you want to make your bridge. These two segments will go on the top and bottom connecting the two sides together.

Step 7:

When you're done putting together all the pieces yours should look like this. This particular bridge was able to hold the maximum 30 pounds. 

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    14 Comments

    Exact project we are using ! This helped very much thanks in advance!

    this has helped me so much thank you so much

    This helped my project a lot! Thanks!!;]

    a little more detail would be nice

    could you send me photos of how you did your bottom base structures, (not the actual bridge part) but whats keeping it up

    My daughter just got this assignment for her 7th grade science project, I'm glad I stumbled upon your instructions! Thanks!! These tips will come in handy! Your bridge looks awesome and sturdy beeteedubs!!

    These were great tips on toothpick bridges. This really helped get an idea on how to build a bridge on toothpicks. Thank You.

    we are doing that in right now in 6th grade

    this looks really hard but it looks fun