New Kirigami (Folded Paper) Designs Support 14,000 Times Their Own Weight



Looking carefully at the picture of the this bit of kirigami, I thought, well, that can’t be too hard to make.

It turned out to be a little trickier than I thought, but not bad. Here it is cut in white cardstock:

and for those who might be interested, here’s the file: (2.9 KB)

In the design the blue and aqua lines are score lines, the orange and red lines are cuts.

Getting it to fold up is a fiddly process, but not hard. It’s mostly a matter of going around and around pushing all the folds gradually into their final shapes and making the triangular tabs that give the thing its strength end up in the right places. I started at the outside edge and worked in.

It works best to have the score lines on the underside, both because it makes it easier to fold (the longer scores are then “mountain” folds) and because it leaves the front side clean.

All in all, an interesting exercise.


Nice! Have you tested it for strength?


Almost 140lbs if the math is right!

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No. no testing, I’m afraid.

From fooling around with it, I can see I’d need a bigger field of the little truncated pyramids to do a reasonable test – at lease one more ring of them. In the version I made, all but six of the truncated pyramids are at the edge where they are not held together as well as the ones in the middle are.

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