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ASCII ART AHEAD

There are many types of origami throwing stars, and here is one of them. It is composed of 8 modules (modular origami), and it also serves as a sort of iris.

Note about ASCII art: ':' means folded, and the line characters define borders of the paper. There is no indication of "hidden" edges or folds.

The module

Each module is made from the same sized square piece of paper.

  1. Fold the module in half, then open it up.
     _____
    |  :  |
    |  :  |
    |__:__|
    
  2. Fold two of the corners into the "valley".
      /|\
    /__|__\
    |  :  |
    |__:__|
    
  3. Close up the valley, while at the same time tucking bottom part into the valley.
       __        ___
      /  | -->  /  /
    /____|    /__/
    
  4. The module should have two prongs on the tucked end.
  5. The module is complete. You need to have 8 total.
Assembly

Note: P stands for the two-pronged end. Modules must be oriented correctly.

  1. Place one module in the pronged end of another, making sure that the open edges of the modules are on the inside.
      ____
      \___\_P
      /    /\
    /____/\___\
               P
    
  2. Fold the tips of the prongs into the prong area of the other.
      ____
      \___\...... folded
      /    /\
    /____/\___\
    
  3. Slide the module down
       ____
      /    \
    /____/   \
          `\___\
    
  4. Go back to step 1
The last 2 modules may be somewhat more difficult to assemble.

The result

  Retracted            Active
    _____                 |\
   /|    \           _____| \ /|
 /  |__/   \         \_____\ | |
| \ /    \__|        /  /\|/\| |__
|__|     |  |  or  /__/|--*--|/  /
|   \___/ \ |        | |\/|\/__/
 \  /  |   /         | | \     \
   \___|_/           |/ \ |~~~~~
                         \|

End notes

  • I didn't come up with this masterpiece, so if somebody can inform me as to who originated it, I will include a reference here.
  • Ah, I now see that this has already been done in How to Create a Throwing Star out of Post-it Notes. However, I have better diagrams. So there. :-)

Another kind of shuriken that I've found to be much sturdier and flies better than the one above. All you need is one square sheet of paper, 8 inches to a side for a decent sized cubicle weapon.

Cut the paper in half vertically so you have two 2:1 rectangles.

     |¯¯¯¯|        |¯¯¯¯|
     |    |        |    |
     |    |        |    |
     |    |        |    |
     |    |        |    |
     |    |        |    |
     |    |        |    |
     |____|        |____|

Fold each paper in half lengthwise, then crease each piece across in the middle.

      |¯¯|         |¯¯|
      |  |         |  |
      |  |         |  |
      |..|         |..|
      |  |         |  |
      |  |         |  |
      |  |         |  |
      |__|         |__|

To fit together, these pieces need to be mirror images, so this is an important step. On one piece, fold the top half diagonally right so the previous left edge is against the crease. Then fold the bottom half diagonally left so the previous right edge is against the crease. Reverse the directions for the other piece.

     _______
    /       |
   /________|             ______
   |   |                 /      |
   |   |       ->  _____/_______|
   |   |          |        /
   |___|          |_______/


         ______    ______
        /      |  |      \
  _____/_______|  |_______\____
 |        /           \        |
 |_______/             \_______|

Turn the models over. Where the piece under sticks out the sides, there should be a square. Fold the outermost corner of these squares diagonally so they make a triangle (labled 1). This half of the entire model shall be labled A. (For clarity's sake, I'm only showing one of the models. You should be smart enough to figure out how to do the same on the other.

  ->  _______
     |      | \
     |      |   \
     |______|.....\ ______
             \     |      |
               \   |      |
                 \ |______| <-

            _
          / | \
        / 1 |   \
      /_____|.....\ ______
             \     |     /
               \   | 1 /
                 \ |_/

Now fold the other paper this way (piece B). Lay B atop of A upside-down so the slit (line of ":"s) is vertical.

>
                |\
            _   |  \
          / | \ |____\
        / 1 |  / :   /
      /_____| /  :  /_____
             /   : /|     /
            /____:/ | 1 /
            \    |\ |_/
              \  |
                \|

Fold the 1's horizontally into the slit. This locks the two pieces together. Turn over and you'll see that piece A has it's own slit to tuck the triangles into.
Finished result:

        |\
        | \
        |  \
        |   \__________
        |   |         /
       /____|____  /
    /       |   /
 /________  |  |
           \   |
            \  |
             \ |
              \|

Perfect for warding off Pointy-Haired Bosses, annoying roommates, or those who doubt your Ninjutsu skillz.

My ASCII sucks, so sue me

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