How to build a 152 cm paper tower with tape and paper

Updated February 21, 2017

Sheets of paper bend easily, but you can roll the paper into a tube to make it much stronger. Strong material is not enough to make a freestanding tower -- you must also have a stable construction or the tower will topple over. Triangles are the most basic stable structure. You can combine triangles into pyramids to make a structure that will support and stabilise any large tower. This is the principle used to create geodesic domes.

Roll sheets of newspaper diagonally into long tubes. Wrap a small piece of tape around the middle. Make 19 of these tubes.

Gather the ends of five tubes together and wrap tape around the bundle, 5 cm from the end. Spread the tubes out from this centre point like the spokes of a wheel.

Tape the ends of a sixth tube to the ends of two adjacent spokes forming a triangle. Tape another tube from the bottom corner of this triangle to the end of the next "spoke." Go all the way around the "wheel" adding tubes. As you bring the "spokes" closer together, the centre of the "wheel" will rise up. You will end up with a pyramid with five triangular sides and a five-sided bottom.

Tape three tubes together 5 cm from the end. Tape tubes between the ends of these tubes, as you did before, to form a pyramid with three triangular sides and a triangular bottom.

Tape the smaller pyramid on top of the larger pyramid. Tape the ends of the last three tubes to the sides of the top pyramid 10 cm from the top. Tape the tops of these tubes together to form a tall sturdy tower.

Measure 152 cm up the tower. Tape the tubes together at that point and cut off any excess paper.


This basic plan can be used with different types of paper to make different sizes of towers.

Add a tube in the middle of the top three tubes to make the tower even higher.

Things You'll Need

  • Newspaper
  • Masking tape
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About the Author

Camela Bryan's first published article appeared in "Welcome Home" magazine in 1993. She wrote and published SAT preparation worksheets and is also a professional seamstress who has worked for a children's theater as a costume designer and in her own heirloom-sewing business. Bryan has a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from the University of Florida.