Paper Unicorn!

Rock the unicorn back and forth and she stretches out her head and neck using a simple linkage concealed beneath the body.

I designed this model for Brother International Creative Centre, it is available to download for free here.

It is a fairly straightforward model being classified as medium difficulty on their website. I hope you enjoy it!


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£2.50
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Shark Attack!

Turn the handle and the sharks circle menacing around the boat. Duuh duh! Duuh duh!

This model uses a variant of the mesh gear essential mechanism which I will shortly be releasing as a stand alone project.

Paid subscribers to robives.com can download the model for free at the link, thanks for your support! Non-members can download the parts file for £2.50


The model comes in both coloured and non-coloured versions. Print out the one you choose onto thin card. (230gsm/67lb is ideal) Score along the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes before carefully cutting out the pieces.


Fold over the gears to make double thickness card and glue them down.


Once the glue is dry carefully cut them out.


Roll up the three axle tubes carefully lining up the edges with the arrows as shown.


Fit the pinion gear into the pinion tube lining it up with the grey line and gluing it into place with the tabs.

Fit the 8mm tube into the square tube lining it up between the two grey lines.


Fit the gear shaft into the large gear and thread in the 9mm axle tube so that it lines up at the bottom face of the gear.


Fold round and glue the base piece leaving the ends unglued. Fit the base spacer into position. The end of a chop stick can be handy for reaching inside the base when gluing the tabs on the spacer down.


Glue closed to complete the base.


Fold up and glue the box front and box back. Note that the long triangle tube is a right angled triangle.


Crease the score lines on the box sides in preparation for assembly.

Note the four grey alignment arrows, arrowed in the picture.


Glue the two sides to the base between the alignment arrows.


With the two sides glued into place, glue and push home the 7mm tube.


Fit the large gear over the 7mm tube. It should be free to turn smoothly.


Glue the box front to one of the box sides. Make sure you glue it to one of the edges closest to the rectangular holes in the side pieces.


Join the box front to the other box side.


Fit the axle support between the two box sides making sure that the circular hole is facing towards the front of the box.


Thread the pinion gear into place between the box front and the axle support.


Glue the box back into place.


Thread the box top down over the vertical axle tubes and glue the top into place.


Assemble the handle in three steps as shown.


Glue the handle to the pinion shaft.

Once the glue is dry turning the handle should turn the outer of the two vertical shafts. The centre vertical shaft should remain stationary.


Glue together the rotating disk and tube.


Make up the shark fins from double thickness card. Once the glue has dried carefully cut them out.


Glue the fins to the disk. The wake pattern on the disk should be behind the fin.


Fit the rotating disk to the outer vertical tube. Turn the handle and test that the disk turns properly.


Assemble the boat stand and boat stand inner.


Fit the boat stand to the inner vertical tube.


Assemble the two parts of the boat.


Fit the boat onto the boat stand, you won't need to glue it down.


Assemble the boater man from double thickness card.


Glue him into the back of the boat to complete the model.

Turn the handle to see the sharks circle menacingly round the boat!


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Essential Mechanisms: Mesh Gear.

Turn the handle on the side of the box and the interlocking gear teeth drive the vertical shaft. Make the model as a demonstration of pure mechanism or use it as a starting point for your own character based automata.

Members can download the project for free at the link. Thanks for signing up! Non members can download the parts for £2.50. Once you have downloaded the file, print out the pieces onto thin card. (230 gsm / 67lb) I used coloured card for a colourful model. You can use coloured, white or patterned card. The choice is yours.

Score along the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes before carefully cutting out the pieces.


Start by making the two gears. They are made from double thickness card. Fold over the pieces and glue them together. Once the glue is dry carefully cut out the teeth.


Make up the crank in three steps.


Fit the nine tooth gear to the crank handle. Line it up with grey line on the handle shaft.


Roll up the two axle tubes and glue down the edges so that they are lined up with the arrow points as shown.


Glue the an axle tube into the handle pushing it completely home.


Glue the short axle tube into the gear, again lining it up with the grey line.


Thread the axle tube into place so that the short axle tube is between the two grey lines.


Fold up the box inner as shown. The end tabs are folded round and glued down to make equilateral triangle tubes. Note that dashed lines are hill folds, dotted lines are valley folds.


Assemble the two short stiffeners and glue them into place on the underside of the box inner as shown. They should be roughly two millimetres from the hole.


Assemble the two box sides. The side tubes are right angled triangles and the end tube is an equilateral triangle.


Fold up and glue down the triangle tube sections on the box top.


Assemble the two box top stiffeners and glue them to the underside of the box. They should be a couple of millimetres from the hole in the box top.


Glue the two box sides to the folded up box inner as shown.


Fold up the box sides and glue them to the box inner as shown. Keep the box centre as square as possible.


Thread the small gear shaft through one side hole in the box inner, through the alignment piece, and out the other side.


Drop the larger gear into place so that it meshes with the other gear.


Complete the mechanism by gluing the box top into place.

As the handle is turned the gears mesh and the vertical shaft is rotated.


The rotation of the vertical shaft can be difficult to see. The hand makes it clearer.

Glue the two halves of the hand together leaving the middle unglued. Slip the completed hand over the vertical shaft.


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Essential Mechanisms: Gearbox.

This gear box features a two to one reduction gearbox. (The gear ratio is actually 23:12 so that the same teeth are not constantly in contact with each other) Use this model as an experiment in pure paper mechanism or as the starting point for your own character based designs.


Print out the parts onto thin card. I used coloured card to make a colourful model. You can use coloured, white, patterned or a mix of all three. Thin card, roughly 230 gsm / 67lb is ideal.

Score along the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes before carefully cutting out the pieces.


The teeth of the pinion gear are made individually. Don't worry, there are only twelve! Fold up and glue down each tooth then glue them together in a strip. Make sure that the teeth are just touching at their base.


Twelve teeth glued together.


Glue one of the gear centres to the pinion axle along one of the grey lines.


Glue the two gear fillets into place so that their ends touch the gear centre where the tabs stick out. (arrowed)


Glue the second gear centre into place.


Take the gear strip. Starting from the end with the hanging tab glue the teeth round the central core...


...finishing by gluing the end down to complete the pinion.


Roll up the two paper axles gluing their ends down lined up with the arrows.


Take the longer of the two axle tubes and thread it through the pinion. Line up the grey line with the end of the square tube. (Arrowed)


The larger gear is made of double thickness card. Fold the piece over and glue it down. Make sure that the central tabs are not stuck. Once the glue is dry, cut out the gear. You can cut out the four sector holes if you like although they are purely for decorative purposes.


Fit the gear to the second square tube lining it up with the grey line then fit the white axle tube into place.


The two gears ready for action!


Assemble the handle in three steps.


Making the Box

Make up the two box side. The triangle sections should be right-angled triangles.


Make up the two box ends. This time the triangle sections are equilateral triangles.


Join the two ends to one of the sides. Use the two and three dot makings to ensure the correct arrangement.


Fit the second box side.

Glue in the side flaps from the box ends onto one side only. Make sure that the box stays square.


Fit the gears into place as shown.


Close the box over the axles and glue them down.


Complete the gear box by adding the handle to the pinion gear.

You can use this as a complete model, the gear is a rather satisfying mechanism in its own right. Or you can use the project as the starting point for your own character based design. I'll be adding a couple of examples of what you could do in the near future.


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Download Dinosaur
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A paper dinosaur to print out and make.

Members can download the parts for free at the link, thanks for signing up! Non-members can join in the fun for £2.50. There are three versions in the download, two coloured and one line only version for you to print out on your choice of coloured or patterned card. Print out the dinosaur onto thin card (210gsm / 67lb) Score along the dotted and dashed lines and carefully cut out the parts.


Fold round and glue down the bottom tab of the centre piece.


Note these two marks on the body top...


Glue the centre piece to the body top between the two marks.


Starting from the end of the neck (arrowed), glue the two sides into place.


Work your way right down to the tail end gluing the tabs down two or three at a time.


Glue the two tail parts together using the tabs.


Using the small arrows for alignment, glue the body front into place.


The legs and feet are made from double thickness card. Fold the pieces over and glue them together. Once the glue has dried carefully cut out the pieces.

Glue the legs to the feet.


Glue the legs to the body on the grey areas.


Assemble the head then glue it to the top tab. Make up the eyes from double thickness card and glue them into place.


The arms are also double thickness. Once you have made them and cut them out, shape them gently for a realistic pose then glue them into place.


The paper dinosaur could be a good starting point to design your own animated paper character!


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The crank slider is a combination of two mechanisms, a crank and unsuprisingly a slider. It makes a useful starting point model for your paper animation projects. Build the mechanism then fit a flying bird or a leaping cat or perhaps even a writhing snake!

The model is free to download for all members. Non-members can download the parts for £2.00


Print out the two pages onto thin card (230 micron-67lb) Score the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes before carefully cutting out the parts.

 


Fold the crank ends over and glue them down to make double thickness card. Once the glue is dry carefully cut out the parts.


Assemble the the two crank parts as shown.


Roll up the three axle tubes. Line up the edges with the the small triangles.


Assemble the push rod. Glue the push rod ends into place with the short axle tube threaded into position.


Glue the two crank parts and the two axle tubes into position.


Glue up the two box sides as shown.


Glue up the box top and base as shown.


Glue together the four parts of the box. Note that the holes in the box sides go furthest away from the box top .


Assemble and glue the slider tube into position.


Thread the push rod up through the slider tube. Fit the box onto the crank and glue the box closed.


Glue the front and back flaps into position.


Assemble the handle.


Finish off the box by gluing the handle into position.


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Turn the handle on this paper automata and the cow jumps up and down in a completely improbable fashion!

The model uses a scotch yoke mechanism to drive the cow up and down and a simple linkage to make the legs move.

Members can of course download the parts for free, thanks for signing up! Non-members can download the parts for £2.50

 


Print out the three parts sheets onto thin card. (230 micron, 67lb)

Score along the dotted and dashed lines, cut out the holes then carefully cut out the parts.


Assemble the head and glue on the horns.


Glue the tab on the top of the neck to the inside top of the head.


Fit the neck into the body using the grey areas for alignment.


Fit the two body inners into place lining up the bottom edges with the bottom edge of the body.


Fit the leg inners front and back.


Glue the leg push rods to the leg inners lining up the end with the end of the legs (arrowed)


Make up the four legs by folding over card to make double thickness. Once the glue is dry, carefully cut them out.


Glue the legs to the leg inners. Make sure that you don't get glue on the body, they should be free to move up and down.


Fit the main push rod into the body between the two leg push rods.


Fit the push rod slider tube to the box top the fit the box top stiffeners to the underside of the box.


Make up the two crank parts as shown.


Roll up and glue the three pins lining up the edges with the arrows.


Assemble the yoke. Glue the two slider tubes into place.


Assemble the crank inplace in the yoke. The long pin is in the centre.


Make the handle in three steps.


Thread the main push rod down through the slider tube in the box lid.

Glue the yoke to the end of the push rod so that it is lined up front to back with the cow and the tabs on the box lid are to the sides.


Glue the two box sides to the box lid as shown.


Fold the box side down and glue them together.


Thread the two pillars into the yoke slider tubes. Glue them into place top and bottom.


Finish off the model by gluing the leg linkages to the front and back of the slider tube and gluing on the handle!


Turn the handle and watch the cow jump up and down. Check out the Instagram animation here.


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A simple paper gearbox to download and make. The input gear has eight teeth, the output gear has twenty two teeth giving a gear reduction ratio of 4:11 or almost 1:3

The finished model can be used as a simple to make gear in it own right or as the starting point for your own charater based paper automata projects. Members can download the parts for free at the link. Non-members can download the parts for £2.50

 


Print the four parts sheets onto thin card. (230 micron/67lb) The parts are not coloured. You can make the model more colourful by printing out the parts onto coloured card.

Score along the dotted and dashed lines and cut out the holes with the a sharp knife before carefully cutting out the parts.


The big gear is made from double thickness card. Fold the card in half and glue it down. Leave it to dry completely under a heavy book to keep it flat. Once dry, carefully cut out the gear and fit the square section shaft into place.


On the other shaft fit the two small gear centres glued back to back as shown.


Glue the teeth down on the grey areas leaving the two ends un-glued.


Glue the teeth to the gear centre following the steps in the pictures.


Fold up the base and top of the box to make right angled triangles.


Fold in and glue down the various tabs on the box end.


Assemble the three parts of the other box end and repeat the process of gluing the tabs down.


Glue the four box parts together.


Fold round and close the box. Don't glue the sides in yet.


Roll up and glue down the two axle tubes lining up the ends of the tubes with the arrows on the tube sides.


Assemble the handle in three steps.


Thread the axle tubes into place inside the square section tubes on the two gears. Use the two grey lines for positioning.

Fit the two gears into place with the small gear at the smaller end of the box. Fold and glue down the box sides and glue down the various remaining tabs to complete the box.

Finish off the model by gluing the handle to the shaft with the small gear.

Check out this Instagram animation to see the gear box in action. I'll be using use mechanism at the heart of my forthcoming hippo model. What will you use yours for?


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Add to Cart to download this kit for free !
Download Paper Bird

These simple-to-make paper birds are a delightful decoration to brighten up any house!

The parts are available at the link for everybody to download for free. Included in the parts file is a special discount code that gives you 10% discount on standard membership and 20% discount on membership plus! The special offer is valid for use until the end of August 2014. I hope you enjoy making these paper birds!


Print out the parts onto thin card. 230 micron / 67lb is ideal. Score the dotted and dashed lines and cut along the solid lines before carefully cutting out the parts.


To make the bird extra colourful, print it out twice onto complementary coloured card. Cut out both sets of parts then use the legs, feet and beak from one colour and the remaining parts from the other colour. Once you are done you can make a matching, complementary bird with the remaining set of parts.


Glue one side of the beak to the head lining it up between the two dots. (Arrowed)


Glue the other half of the body to the other side of the beak. Don't glue anything else, just the beak. Make sure that the body halves are lined up.


Glue the body top into place. Start with the first set of tabs lined up with the bottom of the beak. (Arrowed)


Finish gluing the body top into place lining it up with the top of the body sides.

Glue the two wings to the tabs on the side of the body.


Fold round and glue down the end of the body inner to make a triangular tube.


Glue the end tab of the body inner to the front underside of the body top. Glue the sides of the body inner into place so that it slopes down at forty five degrees.


Assemble the legs as shown. The knee should be at ninety degrees.


Glue the feet to the legs.


Glue the legs to the body inner. Use the grey glue areas for alignment.


The completed paper bird! Try making a flock of different colour birds or try making birds from pattern printed papers.


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Double crank mechanism. Turn the handle on the side of the box and the two pads on the top of the box move back and forth in opposite directions.



Make this project as a way of understanding mechanisms or as the starting point for your own character based paper automata.

Members can download the parts for free from the Add to Basket link at the top of the page. Non-members can download the parts for £2.50

Print out the parts sheets onto thin card. (230 micron / 67lb) The design has no colour in it. To make a colourful model print it out on some pre coloured card. Score along the dotted and dashes lines then carefully cut out the holes before carefully cutting out the parts.


Fold in the box top and box bottom and glue down the side flaps so that they make right angled triangles.


Glue the three box top stiffeners into place. Glue the flaps from the sides of the slots back onto the box top stiffeners.


Glue together the two slider bars and thread the two slider tubes into place. Make sure that the slider tubes are free to move back and forth along the length of the slider bars.


Glue the two slider bars to the underside of the box top so that they are exactly centred in the slots.


Make sure that the slider tubes are free to move back and forth.


Roll up and glue the various pins. Use the arrows and grey areas to make sure that the edges are glue down in the correct place.


Fold over, glue down then cut out the four crank rod ends. Glue two crank rod ends to each push rod and thread the 'Centre' pin into each one.


The completed push rods.


Fold up the long centre crank...


....and glue down the ends as shown.


Assemble the two other cranks in the same way.


Assemble the handle in the three steps.


Join the two push rods together by gluing the pins into the long crank section. Make sure that the two push rods are the same way up, tabs to the bottom.


Finish off the crank assembly by gluing on the two shorter crank pieces and gluing the pins into place.

Make sure that the push rods are free to turn on the pins as the glue dries.


Glue the ends of the push rods onto the bottom surface of the slider tubes. The crease on the tab should be roughly in the centre of the slider tube.


Fold round and glue the triangle sections on the sides of the box end.


Glue the box end to the box top. Make sure you glue it to the opposite end of the box from the two slots as shown in the picture.


Thread the crank assembly into the box end and glue down the box end sides.


Fit the other pieces of the box into place then fold them round to close the box.

Fold in the tabs and glue them to the inside wall of the box.


Fold in the two tabs at the other end of the box and glue them back to back to make a triangular tube.


Finish the model by gluing the handle into place.

Now that you have completed your double crank mechanism it is time to think about how you could add a character to the top of the box. What will you make? A cross country skier? Michael Jackson moonwalking? Two pirates swabbing the deck? It's over to you!



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