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Paper modeling is a great little hobby:-


A 3 Pyramid Puzzle

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I came across this puzzle in Arthur C Clarke's novel "The Ghost of the Grand Banks". In one of the several sub-stories the young daughter of some very bright parents gets into trouble at school. Then came the second puzzle - if you join 1 tetrahedron and 1 square based pyramid (whose triangular faces are also equilateral triangles) how many faces are left? All the kids answered 7! (4 + 5 -2), except for the girl in question, who said 5. She refused to retract her answer, and was accused of stubbornness and just being plain difficult. A letter was sent home. MORE...

A Circle Cutter is so very useful for paper modelling

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Trying to make wheels for paper models is quite difficult. It needs a very good set of scissors, a steady hand and a good eye to cut out accurate circles. After a number of attempts with only poor results I went hunting for a circle cutter and found this one on eBay The scales are in millimetres of radius and diameter, but I find I mostly just adjust till I get the right size disc. It cuts 200 gram / sq. metre card-stock with ease. Very precise and clean edges. There is no problem with distortion of the tool - the end of the circle always meets the beginning of the cut. The blades have been long-lasting too (it comes with 6, and replacements are available). MORE...

An Elephant and an Owl from Yamaha

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Here are two animal models in folded and glued paper (actually thin card, 200 grams per square metre, about twice as thick as normal photocopy paper). These and many more are available as free downloads from Yamaha's web-site. Yamaha bikes and scooters too, and the quality is excellent. MORE...

A Paper Pyramid Map of the Earth

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. A Tetrahedron wanting to be a Sphere! First published 12 Oct 2015 MORE...

A Paper Sushi Lunch

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I'd heard of the lacquered sushi food boxes ("bento" box ???) so when I saw this paper model I was instantly intrigued by it. A love of models, miniatures, bright colours and orderly shapes (but not yet of Sushi food!) made it a "must-make-one" for me. I printed it out on to 200gm/m2 card, and took it with me while on holiday. These paper models are fascinating and fairly quick builds, and just the thing for an interesting relaxation and diversion. I've also got someone in mind who might like it. MORE...

A Reindeer warming up for Christmas duties

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A Reindeer warming up for Christmas duties MORE...

Benjamin Franklin's Folding Paper Ink Tray

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I've forgotten where I heard of this one, but my idea is Ben Franklin invented this as a disposable ink tray in his printing business. As a printer he probably had his fair share of scrap paper to use up. I can't find anything on Google, but if anyone knows whether Franklin did invent it, or who else did, please let me know. Its not essential, but a square gives good final proportions MORE...

Bugatti Type 35

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The Type 35 was, according to Wikipedia, the most successful racing car of all time, winning over 1000 races. They were designed by Ettore Bugatti of France in the 1920s. Notable features were a small straight eight engine with roller bearings for the crankshaft allowing 6000 rpm, very high for the time, alloy wheels with integral drum brakes, a hollow tubular steel front axle (to reduce the unsprung weight - most cars then had heavy forged "I" beam front axles) and one of the most beautiful two-seater bodies ever designed. The racing rules of the day required a second seat for the riding mechanic. Bugatti happily sold the cars to anyone that wanted (and could afford one). The instructions are in German, so I had to make do with just the pictures and a bit of ingenuity. MORE...

Citroen 2CV

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This is a fascinating and quirky car, France's answer to the VW just after the war, designed to carry the French farmer and his family and 100Kg of goods across the dreadful French country roads. It also could cross a ploughed field without breaking eggs in a basket on the front seat. The first ones produced had only 9 brake horsepower from their little 2 cylinder motor, and a top speed of about 40 MPH, unless going down hill. However, they did get about 60 MPG, which was no doubt well received in post-war France. Later models had bigger engines and about 30 BHP. MORE...

Classic Willys Jeep - Paper Model

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The parts are very precisely printed, but the wording is all in Spanish. I thought I could work out everything but hit a few snags - in hindsight I should have used an on-line translator or dictionary to at least get the part names in English. Still, it turned out pretty well. Front view MORE...

Construction Hints for the Paper-model of the Voison Laboratoire Racing Car

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Daihatsu Midget Three-wheeled Micro Truck, Paper Model

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Three wheeled micro trucks were very popular in the immediate post-WW2 years, being cheap to make and own, and small and nimble enough for getting around the tiny streets of many older towns and cities. They are still popular today in Europe (think here of the Piaggio Ape), India and Asia (think of the Indian Bajaj and the Tuk-tuks). MORE...

Dirkon Paper Pinhole Camera - and it works!

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What do you give to a colleague who is leaving work after many years, is a camera enthusiast, and I enjoy making quirky paper models? Obviously a paper model camera! Not only is this one a good imitation of a quality SLR camera, it actually works. It is in the category of pinhole cameras. MORE...

Experimental Delta Recumbent Trike

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Recumbent = lying down (or at least sitting and leaning back). This results in increased comfort and reduced air drag and pedalling effort. Delta = a tricycle with 1 wheel at the front and two at the back. MORE...

Great and Glue-less Paper Car Models from Japan

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I made this one while on holiday at Nelson Bay, March 2010. These simple paper models are a useful pastime for holidays - very little to pack, and not much to bring home either. MORE...

Making Paper Squircle Fold-ups with ImageMagick

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Years ago I received some advertising from IBM, content now long forgotten. What intrigued me was the unusual, large, glossy, black, glue-less envelope it came in. I kept that envelope for many years. Its shape, when opened out, was a square with a semi-circle on each edge. MORE...

Old Mumbles

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Old Mumbles is a lighthouse near the Mumbles Rocks in Swansea Bay, South Wales. It was built in 1794 and lit by two coal-burning fires, to warn ships of the danger. If you get the taste for paper ship building, this is a good site to visit. There are a few free downloads, and the quality is very good. The scale makes them quite small (Old Mumbles is only 6cm high; the model that is ;-0), so you need good eyesight, or a good magnifier. I've ordered the latter. MORE...

Schrodinger's Cat

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This is based on a famous thought experiment in quantum mechanics. If you want to know what it means, there is a good write up on Wikipedia. If you don't understand it, don't worry - I didn't either 8-(. I read about Einstein's theory of general relativity when I was younger, and did not understand that either. Lately I've made several attempts on Stephen Hawking's "A Brief History of Time" with the same result. This model is not a free download, but it was well worth the small cost. It is Schrodinger's famous cat hiding in a rubbish bin (being very unwilling to partake of an experiment with about a 50% chance of a dead-cat result!). The accuracy of the parts is excellent and it went together very well. The gears and cam are beautifully done. You can get it from MORE...

The And-Goat

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For Lucy, who understands such things >8-) Logic gates are the building blocks of microprocessors, of the personal computers we take for granted now. MORE...

US Civil War Mortar Boat

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Mortars are short distance high trajectory cannon designed for shooting over the walls of fortifications. In the US Civil War armoured barges like the model below were used to get the mortars within range. If you get the taste for paper ship building, this is a good site to visit. There are a few free downloads, and the quality is very good. The scale makes them quite small; the mortar barge is only 74mm long! I ended up rolling the trunnions for the mortar barrel around a piece of paper-clip wire, by feel, as I could not really see them all that well. I have since bought a head-band mounted magnifier, which is a great help. MORE...

Voison Laboratoire - Extra Pix

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Voison Laboratoire - Extra Pix MORE...

Voison Laboratoire Racing Car

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Paper Model of a 1923 Voison Laboratoire Racing Car Last updated: $22 September 2021 MORE...

Volkswagen Micro-bus - Paper Model

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This is a model of a VW Micro-bus (not sure what vintage - my knowledge of years and models ends with the original Type 2, which I once owned). The downloaded PDF is quite detailed and accurate, and there are a number of variants at the web-site, including a pickup. MORE...

Yes Indeedy!

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This is a download of a mechanical model "Yes Indeedy". This one is quite simple to build. The design expects you to print double-sided on an ink-jet (unless of course you have a colour laser at home!). However, the solid blocks of colour on the reverse sides use a lot of ink, so you might like to just leave them white, or colour the reverse sides of the cut-out pieces some other way.. MORE...


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