Introduction: How to Make the Lightning Paper Airplane

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A fast, long range dart--the Lightning is a paper airplane that would make a great addition to anyone's air force.

TAA USAF Designation: F198-1

Step 1: Materials

1 Piece of 8.5 by 11 inch Paper


Step 2: Fourth Folding

To begin making your Lightning, fold the paper into fourths. Do this by folding the paper in half along its length, then its width. Then open it along its width. It should now look like the paper in the last photograph.

Step 3: Canard Preparation Folding

Start this step by folding the paper down so that at the edges it come down to the edge's center and the width half fold. Then fold the paper of the corner into the crease as shown. Then fold the paper down again along the crease. Repeat on the other side.

Step 4: More Canard Preparation Folding

From its previous alignment, fold down the swept tip of the paper along the preexisting width half fold. When this is done, flip the paper over and pull the corners into the center.

Step 5: Canard Folding

First of all, begin this step by flipping the paper over so the diamond-shaped folded paper section is on type. Then pull the paper open and flatten it as shown. Then fold a large isosceles triangle part of the flattened canard into itself and a small equilateral part of the more solid underlying paper onto the outside of the paper.

Step 6: Fold the Wings and Winglets

First, fold the paper up in half along its center. Then from one inch above the bottom of the fuselage, fold down the wings. Once both wings are folded, fold the winglets. Do this by folding the paper of the wingtips in an inch.

Step 7: Taping

To finish your Lightning, tape the fuselage together at its front and back. Then once these two places are taped, tape the flaps on the side of the fuselage together for reasons of minimal drag.

Step 8: Flight

The Lightning is a more advanced paper airplane, and is less forgiving in flight as a result. The closest handling flier is the Super Hammerhead. Enjoy!

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