How to Make the Jayhawk Paper Airplane

About: I am someone who mass produces paper airplanes and am always developing new designs. I post regular updates on Twitter and Google+. Follow me there to keep up with the latest developments!
Designed as a supplement to the popular Cardinal paper airplane, the Jayhawk is a little airplane I designed to follow its predecessor in the demonstrator/experimental platform role. In addition to its abilities as a research aircraft, the Jayhawk is also a very good cruiser and is a very good choice for someone looking for and elegant, straight flying paper airplane. 

A few days after publishing the Cardinal I figured out that another airplane was needed to detail the surfaces of an airplane more closely. The Jayhawk was designed with a straight wing to make the addition of surfaces like flaps and ailerons easier than on a tapered wing like the Cardinal's.

As for how the Jayhawk can be used in a classroom or a briefing room:
  • The dynamics of flight can be illustrated with this airplane, and standard control surfaces can be shown with it, unlike other models used. It is also flyable and can give an idea as to how a plane might fly in a certain configuration.
  • It can be used in the classroom for experiments on: weight and balance; glide ratio; and hangtime
  • This aircraft is also capable of a more scandalous role in the classroom--but please do not use this capability my fellow aviators...  
As always, I am happy to assist educators should they have any questions or concerns; or if they have a lesson plan that they'd like to find an aircraft for.

TAA USAF Designation: D164-1

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--13 full boxes apart. Use a ruler to make a straight line with the length of 13 boxes directly up 1 row of boxes from the two marks you just made. Then make the elevators, rudder and counterweight as shown. Follow the photograph markings. Then, three boxes back from the rear of the counterweight, mark a line that stretches 2 boxes further back. 1 box back from the beginning of this line, make a dotted line vertically. Once all is marked out, cut out 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. 6 by 2 boxes. On the last set of two boxes, make a dotted line one half box in from the wingtip. Then cut it out.

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

: 1 box = 0.25 inches

Step 3: Making the Rudder

Begin making your rudder by separating it from the elevators. Then cut one of the two layers of paper where the rudder should be off (I usually cut off the left myself). After you've cut these 6 boxes (3 by 2) off, you may discard them.

Step 4: Making and Taping the Fuselage

After having cut out all of the fuselage. Begin folding it along the dotted lines. After you've folded all the lines correctly, you should now cut along the line in the middle of the fuselage. Do this by folding the fuselage to the right, making a cut, and repeating the fold to the left. Then tape your fuselage together at the front, back, tailplane leading edge and across the counterweight fold.

Step 5: Applying the Wing

Now it is time to work with your Jayhawk's wing. Separate the fuselage around the cut you made. Then put the wing through the fuselage and pull half of it through. Then fold the two halves up on each side of the fuselage. Then apply a small piece of tape to the underside of the wings while they are folded up flush with the fuselage.

Step 6: Winglet Folding and Stapling

Now that the tape has been taken care of, pull the tips of each wing's outer boxes down to their own edges, halving them. Once they have been halved, unfold the wings. The airframe should now be able to sit upright with its ventral winglets supporting it. Once done, apply one staple to the front (over the counterweight fold).

Step 7: Flight

The Jayhawk is a very easy flier. It requires a moderate throw and will go far fast with such a pitch. For best performance, avoid ceiling fans and air conditioning units. Upon landing and on the ground in general, the Jayhawk does well with its outrigger ventral winglets that double as skids.

As for usage as a demonstrator/experimental platform, the many additional surfaces that can be applied on this airframe include: flaps, ailerons/spoilers, elevators, and a rudder (the second photograph depicts a Jayhawk with all these features.

All of these features require half box cuts, and are fairly simple to add:

Flaps: 3 by 0.5 boxes
Ailerons/spoilers: 2 by 0.5 boxes
Elevators: 3 by 0.5 boxes
Rudder: 3 by 0.5 boxes




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    5 Discussions

    No, (though I really don't choose at the university level anyway). This plane's namesake was U.S. Coast Guard's HH-60 Jayhawk, not the mascot of the University of Kansas.