Folding Technique - Folding technique is very important for successful flights. Make each of the folds carefully and accurately according to the instructions. Creases should be made by applying pressure to the fold with the edge of your thumbnail. This is best achieved by holding your thumbnail on the fold, applying pressure, and pulling your thumb along the fold line toward you. This will produce clean, crisp folds that will allow for accurate paper planes. If you make a mistake on a fold that you cannot correct, don’t be discouraged! Just print another template.

Line Types - There are two main types of lines referenced by the instructions: fold lines and cut lines. Fold lines are dashed and cut lines are dotted.

Model Adjustments - No matter what anyone tells you, EVERY paper airplane needs fine-tuning to achieve its best performance. There are several things you should keep in mind while making adjustments to your planes.

Dihedral - Dihedral is a slight upward tilt of the wing tips with respect to the fuselage or body of the airplane. This produces a slight V-shape to the wings when viewed from the front of the plane. Dihedral provides aerodynamic stability to your models by making them want to self-center during flight. Paper airplanes have no intelligent flight controls after they leave your hand, so the plane needs to be naturally stable or else it will crash. All designs on this site perform better when some dihedral is added to the wings.

Elevator - Elevator is the aeronautical term for the hinged flap at the tail section of a plane that causes it to either climb (gain altitude) or dive (lose altitude). In paper airplanes these flaps are generally located on the trailing edge of the wings themselves, since there is rarely a separate tail. They are formed by making parallel cuts about 1 inch apart. This produces a small flap that can be folded slightly up or down. Tilting the elevator flaps up will cause the plane to climb. Tilting them down will make the plane want to dive. If you find that your models are heading nose-down toward the ground shortly after launch, you may need to add some up elevator. Likewise, if they are looping-up too quickly or stalling, you may need to add some down elevator. Adding slightly more elevator to one wing than the other will cause the plane to either turn to the right or left.