Spinning Top (Manpei Arai): Instructions

Adams, Sara
Difficulty Level: 
Low intermediate
Model type: 
Action models
Paper ratio: 

Origami Instructions: Spinning Top (Manpei Arai)

Paper used in this video: 15cm (6in) square of kami
Finished model: height of 3cm (1.125in), diameter of 3.5cm (1.375in)

This video describes how to fold a fantastic origami spinning top designed by Manpei Arai. His granddaughter, Shifuko Ujiie, kindly gave me permission to make this video accessible to you.


OMG this model works so well! Thank you for making this guide!

P.S. I do believe that this model works better than a top from the store =P

Dear Sara:

Fantastic Model! Another superbly-demonstrated model as always, Sara. You are a wonderful teacher.

Many, many thanks.

Best wishes and happy folding,


Fabulous model! I really enjoy playing with it as well as folding it I just got into designing origami myself and its so much fun I designed a bird that looks good and I remember it

Fantastic model amazing video too as always I just got into designing my own origami and I just finished folding an origami bird I was wondering if you would teach it if I sent you the diagrams?

We, at the MFPP, carry (from good source) this story that Manpei Arai is not actually the author of this spinning top, but participated in the drawing of the diagram.
The model was published in a NOA magazine mentionning this too.
I agree it is a great and efficient model, and I'm happy that its community of fans will grow.

WOW! I didn't even know this was possible! Great video, I got confused at parts but that's usually what happens... I tried it a few times because my paper tore but it works pretty well now.

Amazing video??? After trying a few hundred times to understand what the hell she does from 7.18 on, viewing this part until my eyes get to bleed, and tearing a few kilos of this quite expensive kami away, after looking all over the web for a understandable diagram, I finally gave up.
I must say that I'm not a new-born origamist, I'm practicing pretty much everyday, including modular and tessellations, but this looks like some sort of twisted sanskrit to me, so, please, next time, try to make it just clear...

I thank you for your clear and patient-sounding instructions. It took me several attempts, but I was finally successful.

This is really amazing, a spinning top with paper. Totally an incredible piece of work. Really thank you for sharing the video of the same with us. Keep on posting more and more. i am getting more and more addicted to the Origami.

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