Long ago, before the internet was invented, we used to make these paper airplanes out of paper torn from our notebooks in class. It looks great and flies fast.

The video shows me making and flying the plane.

Step 1: Dismember a Magazine

To keep the tradition alive, I shall build this plane out of scavenged paper - from a magazine.

The first step is to tear off (or cut) a rectangular piece of paper from suitable stock. I am illustrating the process with an old magazine I had lying around.

Step 2: Diagonal Fold

Now fold the paper diagonally as shown in the picture. This forms one fold needed for the plane, and also to mark a square shape.

Step 3: Straight Fold

Now fold the bottom part upwards. This puts a fold exactly where the rectangular piece of paper may be cut to make it into a square one.

The body of the plane is folded from this large square piece.

The smaller rectangular piece becomes the tail.

Step 4: Cut and Separate the Tail

Now open up both folds, and tear off or cut at that straight fold. You will end up with a large square piece, to make the body of the plane, and a smaller, rectangular piece, that makes the tail.

Step 5: Fold Along the Other Diagonal

Now fold the paper along the other diagonal and open it up again. You will have a square piece of paper with folds along the two diagonals.

Step 6: Turn Paper Over

Turn the paper over, so that you are looking at the back of the folds you just made.

Step 7: Parallel Fold

Fold the paper in half, so that the three folds cross each other at the centre of the square. Open it up, again.

Step 8: Magic

It's magic. There is no other explanation, since the paper will automatically fold itself into a sort of triangular hat shape with four leaves at this point.

If it doesn't, (you're a squib?) just take up that piece of paper and urge it to fold along those three lines, all at once.

The two pictures show the paper on my scanner, and the picture taken by the scanner. It is a great way to document instructables, since the scanner automatically takes care of all lighting and framing and exposure.

Step 9: Fold the Fuselage

Now you take the two top 'leaves' and fold them forward, diagonally. This will form the fuselage of the plane.

Step 10: Fold the Engines

The ends of the triangular pieces you have just folded are folded inwards to make the two engines.

Keep them small if you want performace. Or make them large for your plane to have large mean looking engines.

These add drag, so it is preferable to keep them small.

Step 11: Fix the Tail

Now assemble the plane. Take that rectangular piece of paper you did not throw away when you cut it off and insert it into the body of the plane.

Fold the body in half, along the line of the tips of the engines. This fold will also lock the tail in position, and prevent it from taking independent flight when you launch it.

Step 12: Pull Out Engines and Add Dihedral

Now pull those two last fold out so that they look like jet engine nascelles.

Put a dihedral on the wings by folding lengthwise. This also stiffens the tail, and makes the plane stable in flight.

Some control may be excercised over the flight trajectory by warping the wings and tail.

Warp the wings downwards to increase lift. Warp the tail upwards to make the plane climb.

Because of the large weight of the plane in relation to the wing area, this is a fast plane, and flights will be short but fast.

Step 13: Launch It!

That's it, have fun.

The plane is best launched by an overhand throw, nose pointed slightly downward. It shoud swoop close to the ground, then climb because of the initial speed, and then level out and settle gently into a descent.
The "magic" fold, for those inept in the arts (or non-paper airplane nerds), is called the squash fold.
<p>or the accordion fold</p>
Mine doesn't fly...it just flops to the ground. I made it exactly how i saw it in the video and it looks just like it.
A4 size paper huh !!!!!!
The music in the video... it motivates me... :3
so...about the rec. piece...do i..just...stick it in there...lol
lol my stepdad taught me that one like 4 years ago, hes 53, he knows alot of the original paper airplane designs and this plane is a good one, at my school i threw it and it landed on the public library 5 blocks away( NOT A LIE) i have people who can vouch
...... i have never had a paper plane fly even close to that far..... and i have to ask you this.......sir......are you jesus!?
have u posted any??????????
i saw the same paper plane on different site! its under the titlw of worlds best paper plane! any wayz its a good out dooR!
&nbsp;my dad makes a better air planes
This plane is way to big for inside of a house...<br /> Unless you r Bill Gates<br />
my dad makes these =D<br /> but my design (completely different) is better :P<br />
what the hell!<br /> It is&nbsp; newspaper ?<br />
You Rock man!Your plane is awesome and I got famous in my grade becauseof it.<br />
look cousins :D this plane and a variation of the swallow
i dont want to ruin the tradition but would it work with a sheet of line-d notebook paper?
i cant wait to try bluiding it cuz my friend makes oragamis and planes alot and i dont think he no's this 1 so im gonna brag for a while lol
how old are you neelandan?
Old enough.
Just received the prize (for max page views) today. T-shirt, Pilot's License and stickers.
i like the Harry Potter humour
heehee! I like the video. How did you get your hands to be edited as invisible? What program did you use? [and the flying segment of the video, as well]
I have a post in the forum detailing the process of creating the video. Read it here: <a href="https://www.instructables.com/forum/Paper-airplane-videography/">https://www.instructables.com/forum/Paper-airplane-videography/</a><br/><br/>The programs I used are listed here in my instructable: <a href="https://www.instructables.com/id/Time-lapse-movies/">https://www.instructables.com/id/Time-lapse-movies/</a><br/>
oh an by the way umm...precious_sweetie_4u he's using fishing line you can see it reflecting from the light
put this on toss it!
Vid = lawl<br/>
What size paper, 8.5"x11" or something else?
I measured the magazine. It is 27 cm x 20 cm.
cool! i make something like this and ill get a pic up of it
I need help on step 12 i'm confused
Maybe I'll put that bit in the video ...
Pretty cool. Did you have to scan each step to take a picture? I find that... very annoying and long. :P<br/><br/>Great job, might try it out.<br/><br/><sub>You have to have a 30 second or less video of it in flight.</sub><br/>
Yes, compared to a video of the process, scanning the steps is tedious. But I find that the best imaging device I have now is the scanner, and my best pictures come from the scanner. Perhaps I have yet to learn to use the digital camera effectively. I am working on the video, and hope to get it posted sometime before the deadline. Thanks for the encouragement.
it works. even though it took me a bit of time to figure out the picture...
kind of good....
i built it and it worked very well.

About This Instructable




Bio: Hi. I'm Chandra Sekhar, and I live at the southern tip of the Indian subcontinent. I'm interested in building small one-off circuits around ... More »
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