Paragon Cardmodels

Instructions / General Construction:

    Welcome to the instructions section!  I have some good news and some bad news.  Bad news first; the majority of my models do not have instructions, and will probably never get their own set of instructions.  The good news is that my models, being of very similar subjects, are likewise similar in design, and one should be able to easily figure out how to build new models using the same techniques I lay out for older ones.  The relative simplicity of the models also allows a pretty generalized construction technique.

     Each of my models has the same general parts, that will each receive their own section here, with accompanying reference images.


The first piece of advice is to use rather heavy paper.  I build all of these models with 110 lb card stock.  I don't know what that converts to, or what the foreign equivalent is, sorry.  I would not suggest using much lighter or heavier paper than this.

A Note on Difficulty:

I've added a simple difficulty rating for each of my models.  The short and simple of it is that the lower the rating is, the easier it is to build.  To delve into a little more detail:

1 - This rating means the cuts, folds, and gluing is pretty much the most simple of them all.  This is only compared to the rest of the models on this site but if you're looking for a good place to start, the 1s should be plenty easy.  If you're looking for a good model for a child, these can be cut almost entirely with scissors (instead of significantly more dangerous x-acto knives), and can be assembled quickly and with reasonable ease.

2 -  This rating means the model is almost as easy as the 1s, except that in most cases they require standard cardmodelling tools, and a little bit of experience to build.  They typically have "full" wings, and require scoring in multiple places.  Construction itself is about the same as the 1s, but the parts require slightly more preparation.  I would not suggest this for children you do not trust to use knives.

3 -  Almost the same as 2s, these models require more scoring to fold properly.  The construction for 3s is also typically less obvious, and might require a little planning and thought to make sure they go together well.  Its good to have a bit of experience before trying any of these.

4 -  You will need to read some of the instructions below to build models with this rating, there is no way around it.  For the previous ratings, instructions are useful, but not necessary, for 4s, you really should follow instructions at least the first time you build one.  There is one feature that will always win a model a rating of 4; swing-wings or other rotating parts.  Without an understanding of the swing-wing mechanism, you will have a very difficult time completing the model.

5 -  There is currently only one model with this rating; the V-22 Osprey.  This model is my most complicated, especially if you want the rotors to rotate and tilt.  I will be sure to include images of all the important steps of construction every time I release a model of this difficulty, so if a model has that number, you should make your way back to this page to get the guide/instructions.

6+ -  None of my models currently deserve this difficulty rating, and while I doubt I will be designing any with this kind of detail, it is not an impossibility.  My V-22, while difficult compared to the rest of my models, is still a simple model compared to some of the truly high-quality cardmodels out there.  These models require detailed instructions because they consist of a large number of parts, some of which can be confused for each other, and therefore must be numbered.  If I ever charge for any of my models, it will most likely be for this kind.



    Depending on the model being constructed, the wings may be the most reasonable place to start.  It is important to note that my models vary between three different types of wigns.  This section will detail construction for each type.

 Type 1: Flat

    The first, and most overwhelmingly common type of wing present in my designs is the flat wing.  This wing is essentially two pieces of stock, cut in the shape of the wings, glued together.  Typically, these wings are the strongest, the dual thickness makes them hard to bend, and they tend to be entirely connected; the left and right wings are both made from the same pieces of card stock.

    This particular type of wing is taken pretty much directly from Ojimak's designs.  It is especially appealing to a designer because it is easy to design, all you need is a top and bottom view of the wing. If a model has apparently mirrored wings, with no tabs along the edges, it is to be constructed simply by gluing the two pieces together. 


 Wings from the MiG-15 model.












     Sometimes a model also includes a white part that appears similar in shape to the wings, only thinner.  This can be glued between the wings, and helps add weight to the front of the model and form a better airfoil, to make a better glider.


 Wings of the MiG-15 under construction, note the thin part that will be glued between them.








    Some models, typically those with cigar-shaped fuselages and wings that sprout from the middle of it (as opposed to the top or bottom) will also include tabs on the wings to be used to affix them to the fuselage.  They will appear to be a long trapezoidal shape, with the longest side missing.  The three apparent sides should be cut, and the tab folded up and glued to the fuselage (typically the outside, though the inside also works).  The wings are inserted into a slit in the fuselage when constructed.

 Tabs are circled here in blue.











Left: Wing tabs folded up.

Right: Tabs glued to fuselage.






    Other control surfaces for models with flat wings are typically flat as well.  The are also folded over and glued together, though tabs on the ends are folded apart and glued to the fuselage (or whatever part they belong on).


Tabs of control surfaces circled in blue.








Example of tabs being attached to fuselage.











 Type 2: Swing-wing

    The second type of wing is also flat, however it includes a mechanism to make the wings rotate.  First, the two wings should be constructed.  Any red circles on the roots of the wings are to be cut out.  An axle is then inserted into the hole.  The axle is affixed to the top and bottom of the housing.

     There are two types of swing-wing mechanism, the "cog" design and "pin" design.  The "cog" design is typically better, though harder to design.




Parts for a "cog" type swing-wing.









Cut out and assemble the wings.  Cut out the red circles. 








Attach the semicircular collar to only one side.







Cut out, roll, and splay the ends of the axles, then insert them into the holes in the interior brace.








Fit the cogs of the wings together and put them on the axles.







Fold and glue down the splayed ends of the axles.  Construct the rest of the plane around them. 






     The pin design is almost exactly the same, the only difference is that instead of using cogs, the wings have slits that lay atop each other, into which a pin is inserted to ensure they move together.



 Example of "Pin" swing-wing parts.







Everything red is cut out, especially the slit in the white part.  A pin is inserted into the slits, to keep their motion together.








 Type 3: "Full" wing

    The third wing type is pretty simple to construct, and is more realistic looking.  The difference to look for on a model is the presence of tabs along the edge of the wing.  This means the paper is meant to be attached by glue, not the rest.  I typically recommend that you do not score the leading edge of the wing during construction, to make it more round, though it depends on the aircraft.



Rounded leading edge of a"Full" wing.










 Once again, the same typically applies to the other control surfaces on models that use this technique. 

Individual Instructions:

    Some of my models have actually recieved their own instructions, here they are.  I suggest everyone look at them and use them to help with construction of other models.

F-25 Instructions.pdf

F-86 Instructions.pdf

MiG-21 Instructions.pdf

MiG-37 Instructions.pdf





Design Tutorial

For anyone interested, I have made a design tutorial for anyone interested in designing models like mine.  It does not require 3D programs, but does require a good layered 2D program (Gimp works just fine).

 Design Tutorial (Forum)