A Perfect Fold.

General discussion about Origami, Papers, Diagramming, ...

A Perfect Fold.

Postby Nesting Crane » July 1st, 2005, 1:43 am

I'm sure I know what the answer is. However, just in case I am wrong I will ask the question.

Is there a method of getting perfectly even folds. I try to fold my projects perfectly, however, I always end up with them being just a little crooked. So, when I am finished, my subject looks crooked. Most of them tilt to one side, and if they have small heads then they will usually have twisted features.

So, I was hoping that there was a method of perfecting this that I didn't know about. :?
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Postby wolf » July 1st, 2005, 2:26 am

First thing to check: If you're starting from a square, can you be sure that the paper you start with is perfectly square? Commercial papers aren't always cut that precisely, and factors like humidity will cause uneven expansion/shrinkage of the paper as well. Also, even minor misalignments will tend to propagate as the folding progresses. Another problem is paper creep - a large majority of the paper used in folding are of finite thickness, so everytime a section with many layers are folded together, some layers will inevitably be tugged out of place.

So apart from checking/cutting the starting paper to the correct dimensions, the only other fix for this problem is practice - this will allow you to identify problems beforehand and try to correct them as soon as possible.

Sometimes, a skewed model can be nice, particularly for animals - perfect symmetry for living creatures tends to make them look wooden and artificial.
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Postby Nesting Crane » July 1st, 2005, 3:14 am

wolf,

OK. With the issue of inferior paper. What is the best kind to use?

so everytime a section with many layers are folded together, some layers will inevitably be tugged out of place.


Yeah, I have ran into that problem many times. Even when I make perfect folds, as the project progresses, the constant folding compromises perfection. :(

perfect symmetry for living creatures tends to make them look wooden and artificial.


Some of mine look like they were hit by a Semi moving at 70mph. :lol:

Well, it sounds like this would be a good time to invest in that paper cutter I have been meaning to buy. :idea:
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Postby wolf » July 1st, 2005, 3:51 am

Nesting Crane wrote:OK. With the issue of inferior paper. What is the best kind to use?

It depends. What do you want to fold, how do you want to fold it and what kind of effect do you want to achieve?

For simple models with a few layers (eg cranes and other traditional folds), kami would be mostly okay.

For intermediate models with more layers (eg Montroll animals), kami will work but depending on the design of the model, the finished model may splay or split, even if Montroll himself says that the majority of his stuff can be done with standard 10" kami. If you want to wetfold such models, you'll want to use a heavier weight paper like Canson or Elephanthide.

For complex models (eg insects), tissue foil is usually the weapon of choice since they can hold creases extremely well, and ridiculously large aspect ratio flaps can be squished into place. Tissue foil is bulky though, so while it might be suitable for a dragon, it would be extremely difficult to get a convincing insect out of it, particularly for those with long thin legs (eg the majority of Manuel Sirgo's bugs). For these, strong thin fibrous paper would be ideal (eg kozo, lokta and the Origamido papers), and often these papers are backcoated/"painted" with methylcellulose glue which allows them to hold their shape.

Paper cutters don't guarantee you perfect squares (or whatever polygon you want) either. I find that a straightedge, cutting mat and sharp knife work better. Using square templates made from sheet metal work extremely well too.
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Postby malachi » July 1st, 2005, 5:10 am

Only use rotary blade paper cutters. Not the guillotine style.
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Postby ilithiya » July 1st, 2005, 8:46 am

Malachi brings up a good point. Guillotine cutters have a nasty tendency to cause the papers to shift as they're being cut, and this is particularly noticeable when you're cutting a stack. The hobby sized photo guillotines are pretty worthless.

Rotary cutters, both handheld and frameset, cut in a different manner and cause much less shift during the cut. They're also vastly easier to keep razor sharp than guillotines.

Guillotines chop, rotaries slice. Most rotary blades are also sharpened on both sides for a good V edge, where guillotines are sharpened on one side for a slanted edge (which is what causes the shift).

Thanks, Malachi! (And sorry for my rambling!)

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Postby hermanntrude » July 1st, 2005, 9:24 am

i've heard people mention tissue foil a lot here, but i have no idea what it is... do you buy it or make it? where and/or how?
blahblahblahboringsignatureblahblahblah
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Postby wolf » July 1st, 2005, 11:13 am

Short answer: Take tissue, glue to foil. Repeat on other side of foil (optional). No shop sells it yet, as far as I know, so you'll have to make it yourself.

For more details, one of the best articles on the subject is that by Sebastian Marius Kirsch:

http://www.papierfalten.de/en/articles/ ... cking.html

...although I've found that the paper rolls are not really necessary - just use a stiff plastic card (eg credit card) to smooth out the wrinkles.

I'm sure there's lots more articles on this topic (google search, or search the origami archives).
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Postby Nesting Crane » July 1st, 2005, 4:56 pm

wolf,

Yikes!! I had no idea origami could be so complicated. Well, can I get any of those papers at an origami supply shop, or are these papers that come from other places?


Only use rotary blade paper cutters. Not the guillotine style


malachi & ilithiya,

I am so glad you two added that bit of information. I got paid today and was going to buy the guillotine paper cutter online today. Talk about dodging a bullet. That just makes me sick knowing how close I came to making that purchase.

I have a lot of thinking to do. Even when it comes to origami paper I was not putting any thought to it. I thought paper was paper. So, I was buying the traditional 6 inch origami paper you buy at craft stores. :?
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Postby Nesting Crane » July 1st, 2005, 5:36 pm

OK. Before I made a major decision on this, I wanted to know if this was the same thing as a rotary cutter? It was in the rotary trimmer section, but they call it a rolling trimmer. Is there a difference? :?

I know that sounds like a stupid question. However, some companys give their products different titles, because they like to set it apart from the crowd. While other companys give their products different titles, because it isn't the same thing. :?

Anyway, here is the link to the product I am speaking of.

http://www.dickblick.com/zz571/30/
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Postby Joseph Wu » July 1st, 2005, 5:51 pm

It's the same thing. And the link shows exactly the type of cutter you should be getting. It's sturdy, made of metal, and has a large surface to allow for alignment of paper.

However, I agree with wolf: with practice, a straight-edge and Xacto knife on a good quality cutting mat works best. Get a "self-healing" type of mat and a metal straight-edge (ruler) with a non-slip pad on the bottom. I like KDS Safety mats because they are in centimetres (Xacto makes good ones in inches), and AlumiCutter straight-edges.
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Postby Nesting Crane » July 1st, 2005, 6:49 pm

I thought if I dig long enough I could find it. You can find Tissue Foil at this website.

http://jofounter.en.alibaba.com/group/50006899/Foil_Tissue.html

I don't know if it is the same thing. Also, sometimes a person can get better results if they are willing to make their own product. I really don't know how it all works. I just know there is something called Tissue Foil. :?

Joseph Wu,

Thanks for the confirmation. :)


However, I agree with wolf: with practice, a straight-edge and Xacto knife on a good quality cutting mat works best.


Well, my real problem is that my hands shake real bad, and I could never make a good precision cut that way. When you have 4 Frappuccinos, a jumbo ice tea, a Dr. Pepper, and lots of chocolate, a straight line just isn't possible. :lol:
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Postby Joseph Wu » July 1st, 2005, 7:39 pm

That foil tissue looks different than tissue foil. In origami circles, tissue foil refers to a hand-made product, a sandwich of artist's tissue with aluminum foil. The foil tissue on that website looks like a machine-made product. Without having examined the foil tissue, I would guess that it is thinner than tissue foil, meaning that you could fold finer details with it, but that it would probably be easier to tear.
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Postby phil » July 1st, 2005, 8:24 pm

I've been using a 12 inch guillotine paper cutter that my Grandfather bought at a garage sale in 1971. It's never been sharpened and it cuts perfect squares up to 24 inches every time using all types of paper. I tried using a large rotary cutter at Kinkos(a copy store). I really had a hard time getting it to cut good squares. So It really just depends on your personal prefrance. You can go to copy stores and they sometimes let you use their paper cutters for free, so you can see what type you like to use. I've also had good results cutting small squares with a box knike and square template using a piece of cardboard as a cutting mat.
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Postby Joseph Wu » July 1st, 2005, 9:33 pm

Yes, I suppose it does boil down to personal preference. However, speaking in general terms, a rotary cutter is easier to use than a guillotine cutter. Why? Because the guillotine has a tendency to drag the paper whereas the rotary cutter does not. YMMV.
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