# Soda
Straw Stuctures

A
relatively simple way to make geometric structures using plain soda
straws.

*You are welcome to
use this procedure as you wish. All I ask is that you give me credit:*

*Michael
J. Patten*

and email me as to where
and how:

pattenmike1@yahoo.com

The
trick is the hinges that hold the struts together.

How
to Cut

Since you will need two
hinges for every strut, you must cut the straw into thirds (one
strut, two hinges)

Measure a representative straw (hold
several straw in a bundle and discard the long and shorter
ones).

Divide that measurement by three.

Mark on straw
down that distance; cut.

You now have a template for all other
cuts.

Hold remaining straw end by end and cut remaining
pieces.

(note, the last piece may be longer or shorter than the
rest, but since it will be a hinge, it is not as important).

The
first cut should be uniform and used as the strut (the uniformity of
length will become apparent if you attempt building complex geometric
shapes).

How
to fold hinges

The piece that will make a
hinge should be flattened.

You can roll the straw between your
fingers and you will feel where the straw was made (it should flatten
easier).

Fold the flattened piece down the middle (it should
want to fold one way more readily than another).

Bend the
folded piece in half.

Notice that the hinge now has a "V"
shape, which may be useful to combine in your structure for natural
tendency to bend one direction or the other).

How
to assemble

If you want to
construct straight-line structures, place hinges in opposite
directions.

For geometric structures place hinges with "V's"
the same direction so that they naturally tend to fold in the angle
direction.

During complex, multi-layer structures, construct
inner structures first, working out.

I use this method to
make the 5 Platonic Solids and the 13 Archimedes Solids

(of course
they are now NOT solid)

as well as models of any geometric shape
you can imagine.

These models are not that stable.

You
could stabilize them by putting a staple or other wire through the
strut and two hinges.

## Contact
Information

Please feel free to
write with suggestions on improving this instruction.

**Electronic mail
address**

pattenmike1@yahoo.com

Hey,
spam just proves that someone knows I'm alive (the delete key is
handy)

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##### Copyright © 1938-2002,
Michael J. Patten

Last revised: February , 2002