414: Sopwith Camel

I have been asked many times by well-meaning people whether I can make paper air planes:

The honest answer is “sort of” – I love fantastically complicated and detailed Origami models of actual planes, but cannot make one that can fly for shit.

This little beauty was a right bastard of a fold but closely resembles, at least in intent, the Sopwith Camel – a famous dogfighter in WWI. A fantastically detailed little model with propellor, machine gun, pilot, landing deat abd a lovely set of supported twin-wings.

Designed ingeniously by Jose Maria Chaquet from a bird-base within a bird-base, I mis-judged how dense the paper would become and started with too smaller a square I think – 40cm was not big enough, but still, battled on with the Kraft paper and think the end result is pretty nice for a first fold.

If I were to fold this again, I think 50-60cm would make the final modelling easier. As the fuselage is so dense I had to “cheat” and use some small bits of double-sided tape to hold it together and stop it unfolding itself in the humidity but I will not tell anyone if you do not.

2 thoughts on “414: Sopwith Camel

  1. Please can you give some advice on how to do the bird base inside another bird base as i found this very confusing… Please help!

    1. You need to form the big birdbase first, the top little triangle, when unfolded is a square which you can, with great perseverance, fold a smaller birdbase (which is just a 4 pointed star made up of angle bisectors). It took me a while to work out hoe both could co-exist, the smaller one was very difficult to collapse and my paper fatigued considerably in the many attempts. I would suggest you practise on a scrap square first before trying to integrate it in to your production fold.

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