How to Make the SkyScout Paper Airplane

Introduction: How to Make the SkyScout Paper Airplane

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Fast, long range and aerodynamic, the SkyScout is a small "drone cruiser" paper airplane meant as a larger follow-on to the Super Scout.

The SkyScout was developed as a response to the recent lack of swept wing miniature sailplane paper airplanes. To simplify construction and development, the SkyScout retains the airframe design of the Super Scout. However, the wing design is completely new. This larger wing design is designed to give the aircraft superior glide characteristics and lower wing loading. In flight testing, performance was found to be good and handling acceptable; publication followed shortly thereafter.

TAA USAF Designation: D376-1

Step 1: Materials

1 Piece of 8 by 10.5 inch graph paper (4 boxes per inch)






Step 2: Begin Construction

First, begin by folding your your graph paper in half (excluding three boxes on the perforated side). Once the paper has been folded appropriately, make two marks--11 full boxes apart. Use a ruler to make a straight line with the length of 11 boxes directly up 1 row of boxes from the two marks you just made. Then make the rudder and counterweight as shown. Follow the photograph markings. Then, mark out the wing spars and skids. Half a box forward of the trailing edge of the vertical stabilizer, make a solid horizontal line 2 boxes in length as shown (this will later become the slot through which the horizontal stabilizers pass). Also, draw the diagonal line along the bottom of the fuselage.

After the fuselage is made, take another sheet of paper that is folded in half along the lines of boxes. Mark out the wing as shown (2 boxes of chord at the root, by 5 boxes in width, with a leading edge sweep of 1 box of chord eliminated every 2 boxes away from the fuselage root and a trailing edge sweep of 1 box of chord every 5 boxes from the root). Then cut the wing out. Measure 2 boxes along the crease, measure two boxes upwards from one mark and make another point. Then draw a diagonal line connecting this new mark to the one further away. From the mark you just made, measure one box further away from the one now connected to the line and make a mark. Sketch a line between this mark and the other mark along the crease. Then cut the horizontal stabilizers out.

Solid lines indicate places to cut. Dotted lines indicate fold lines.

Note: 1 box = 0.25 inches

Step 3: Making the Fuselage

Cut out your fuselage and fold the counterweight into itself as shown. Then unfold the fuselage and cut the right vertical stabilizer off. Then restore the fold. Fold the fuselage forward at the vertical dotted line on the vertical stabilizer. Once you have made the cut along the solid line, unfold. Once this is done, fold down the spars and skids. Then apply tape where designated. Now cut along the diagonal line at the keel of the airframe.

Step 4: Applying the Wings and Horizontal Stabilizers; Stapling

Cut out your wings and lay them out flat. Align the fuselage over top so the spars align with the wing as shown. Then apply tape. Cut off any excess. Flip the aircraft over and apply tape to the leading edge of the wing above the leading edge root extensions.

Once you have finished with the wings, cut out your horizontal stabilizers and slide them through the slit in the fuselage you made earlier. When through, fold them up and apply tape to the underside; then fold down.

Then apply one staple in the area of the counterweight. This will have completed your aircraft.

Step 5: Flight

The SkyScout flies very similar to other mini paper airplane designs and handling is quite docile. Launches at moderate speed at a neutral attitude will result in best performance. Trim may be necessary, so test flights are recommended. Additional applicable surfaces include slats, ailerons, flaps, flaperons, elevators, a trimmable rudder and air brakes. Enjoy!

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