Do papercraft blanks exist for polyhedra?
December 1, 2016 1:24 PM   Subscribe

I kind of doubt this exists, but am asking with a small glimmer of hope: I am looking for white cardstock that has pre-scored fold & cut lines for a dodecahedron. I would be open to other polyhedra as well. I would design a skin for it and print it out using a laser or inkjet printer. The recipient should be able to easily fold it up into a shape. I would like to create about 20 of them.

I have found numerous templates online for creating your own patterns, but I want to make this as easy as possible and not have to do any extra cutting or scoring by hand. Say the budget is $200 and the timeframe is a week.
posted by oxisos to Media & Arts (8 answers total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Could you get hold of a Cricut or Silhouette machine and run yardstick through that to be cut according to a template? Then you would have the shape cut out, and the places to fold would be quite obvious.

Could you pay a teenager a portion of the $200 to pre-fold (or at least score) all of them? Or call a local Kinko's? They do weirdo jobs like that for $$$.

My town's library has a Cricut, and another one nearby even has a 3-D printer. *shrug* You might be just as lucky.
posted by wenestvedt at 1:36 PM on December 1, 2016 [3 favorites]

There are pre-cut "pillow" style gift boxes that you can get in craft stores, usually in the papercraft/scrapbooking aisles or with the wedding/party favor supplies (a la these) I feel like that's where you should start looking. I didn't have any luck finding fancier shapes online, but I am certain I've seen some in stores.
posted by pixiecrinkle at 2:00 PM on December 1, 2016

I googled for "folding dodecahedron paper kit" and adding "kit" surfaced some possibly interesting options. Check out this math art page, maybe? Scroll down to the geoballs, which looks like a kit of 18 prescored cardstock polyhedra. Google found some others, but that one looked closest.
posted by instamatic at 2:12 PM on December 1, 2016 [3 favorites]

Sorry, I should have added the description to save you a click.
Geoballs is a cut and scored kit that allows the construction of 18 different polyhedra from card stock. No glue or tape is needed; a locking tab-and-slot system is used. These models bring together two ancient geometric disciplines: the study of Platonic and Archimedean solids, and traditional Islamic patterns.
posted by instamatic at 2:13 PM on December 1, 2016

Ugh, sorry, I see that you specified WHITE. This vendor seems a little Etsy-ish? Might be worth an email to see if you could get blanks with no designs?

Which actually makes me think...maybe check Etsy?
posted by instamatic at 2:18 PM on December 1, 2016

Sorry for flooding this thread, but this is such a lovely relaxing thing to search for. Check out this Etsy supplier who offers laser cut card stock kits in different shapes. It looks like they create to order, and it says 1-3 business days. Worth a try?

Laser cut 3D polyhedra from 2D cardstock by RandomicityStudio on Etsy
posted by instamatic at 2:34 PM on December 1, 2016 [4 favorites]

I got something very similar to what you're describing from the Illinois Geometry Lab at UIUC when visiting last spring. Might be worth e-mailing them if all else fails. The ones I got from them were on 11x17 bright pink paper, with a few polyhedra on each.
posted by Wulfhere at 4:27 AM on December 2, 2016

It turns out that I do know someone with a Silhouette machine who was willing to help. However, my hand-cut prototype was so well-received by my group, they wanted to make 60 of them, which would require something more heavy duty. So I contacted RandomicityStudio and it looks like they will be able to do exactly what I want very quickly for a reasonable price. Thanks for the great ideas everyone!
posted by oxisos at 9:07 AM on December 3, 2016 [1 favorite]

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