How to Make the StarVigilante Paper Airplane

Introduction: How to Make the StarVigilante Paper Airplane

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Fast, long range and versatile, the StarVigilante is a great lightweight paper airplane that was developed from the popular Vigilante. The StarVigilante's trapezoidal wings and great wing area give it excellent speed and glide characteristics, making it one of the best of its type.

The StarVigilante's originates from my efforts to complement the Starhawk, which--although a great performer--had fairly high wing loading. To complement the Starhawk, the Vigilante was designed. However, I believed the Vigilante was too dissimilar to adequately serve as a direct complement to the smaller Starhawk. I begin to explore ways on reducing the Vigilante's size and ultimately chose that which the Starhawk had used. The resulting StarVigilante performed excellently. It had lived up to all expectations and more. Its speed and range was equal to that of the Starhawk, but its wing loading was lower. Because of this, its stall speed was lower enabling easier slow flight.

The StarVigilante is an excellent paper airplane that can fill just about any role and would be a great addition to anyone's paper airplane cache.

TAA USAF Designation: A156-1

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Step 1: Materials

1 Piece of 8.5 by 11 inch Paper
Scissors (advanced models only)

Step 2: Length and Corner Folding; Cutting the Trailing Edge

Take your paper and fold it along its length. Then pull the corners in at each end and fold them into the center. Then unfold one pair on the same side and cut them away along the crease. You may then discard these pieces.

Step 3: Security Fold Preparation

Prepare your airplane for its security fold by folding one corner to the other side. Then repeat on the other side. Pull the upper half of this cross fold over its lower half once the "X" has been established.

Step 4: Leading Edge and Security Folding

Fold the corners into the creases made by the cross ("X") folding. Then fold them down along the mutual crease that comes together at the center. Fold the leading blunt edge of the front in towards the center as shown. Then pull the small trapezoidal tab of paper forward and secure the leading edge folds down.

Step 5: Wing and Winglet Folding

Measure 0.75 inches in from the wingtips and then make a line parallel the center crease. Once you've done this, fold the winglet down and repeat on the other side. Then measure 0.75 inches above the center crease at the front and back and make marks. Also measure 2.5 inches inwards along the center crease from the back tip (this will become the vertical stabilizer). Then fold the wing down so the wing root fold connects the two marks. Repeat on the other side.

Step 6: Tail Folding and Taping

Fold the vertical stabilizer by folding the fuselage aft of the 2.5 inch mark you made previously upward so that a crease forms in between this mark and the trailing edge of the wing at the wing root. Then unfold. Next, open the fuselage and reverse the folds, pulling the fin into the fuselage as shown.

Next, begin taping you StarVigilante at its front and back, underneath its tail.

Step 7: Flight

The StarVigilante flies similarly to the heavier Vigilante and other comparable darts. A fast throw at a neutral attitude will give the airplane the fastest, furthest flights possible. Additional applicable surfaces include slats, flaps, flaperons, elevators, ailerons, elevons, rudders, and air brakes. Enjoy!

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