Music. I’ve never been particularly good at making it. Listening, I’m OK, but creating a tune, no. I think it has something to do with rebelling against a parent who taught music for years — and figured I needed to be subjected to the torturous sounds of student-level practices as well. I still haven’t picked back up a musical instrument to this day.
But I am good with my hands — at least, that’s what I like to think — so I’ve created a fun little paper toy to help distract you from your daily to-dos and responsibilities. Based on our 2009 Music Guide cover, it takes the mechanics of plugging an electric guitar into an amp and turns it into a bit of good old-fashioned, sophomoric humor. So download the PDF file, cut it out, paste it together, and have a guilty giggle while playing with it (your toy that is … er … never mind).
3. Plug housing
4. Inside sleeve
1. Assemble the plug by rolling and gluing on the tab. The tabs on the end caps glue on the inside of the plug. (HINT: To aid in rolling and gluing, the plug is roughly the same diameter as a No. 2 pencil or ball point pen.)
2. The plug housing goes together the same way as the plug, the only difference being the two tabs on the end caps that will glue to the plug later on.
3. Once the glue is dry on both pieces, insert the plug through the plug housing. Use the red dots on both the plug and the housing to help keep the shading in proper alignment. Glue the housing tabs to the plug.
4. Fold and glue the inside sleeve together.
5. The sleeve glues onto the back of the amp cutout, centered around the cut out plug hole. (This will add some sturdiness when the plug is plugged in.)
6. Glue up the amp.
7. Sit back and have a cold one while you marvel at your handiwork.
Tips for assembling paper toys
1. Print on a heavy-weight cover stock or card stock.
2. Use a sharp craft knife and straight-edged ruler to cut it out.
3. Cut right up to, but not over, the edge lines of the toy.
4. Pre-score first to avoid messy or cracked folds. This can be done by going over the fold lines with the unsharpened back side of a well-worn craft knife blade. The goal is not to cut the paper, but to create a slight indentation for the fold to follow.
5. Use a wrinkle-free craft glue. There are many fast-drying brands on the market (I bought mine at an office supply store).
6. Keep your hands clean of any glue. It might seem overly obsessive-compulsive, but no paper toy looks good with a bunch of glue fingerprints all over it.
7. Be patient. Give the glue a little time to dry.