How Do You Build Strong Straw Towers?

Horia Varlan/CC-BY 3.0

Building a strong tower out of straws is an engineering project to learn about the stability of certain types of structures. For this project, you need 55 straws, masking tape and a pair of scissors. The task will take between one and two hours.

  1. Build a base

    Tape together five straws to make the base of the tower. Make the base into a pentagon shape.

  2. Put together the sides of the tower

    Build the sides of the tower by connecting five sets of seven straws into a single post. Build a supporting center post by connecting one set of six straws. Connect by cutting a one-inch slot into one straw, slipping the cut end into another straw and taping the connections together

  3. Build the sides of the tower and support

    Tape one end of the five posts to each corner of the pentagon base by using plenty of tape. Take five new straws, and cut 1/4 off each of them. Use the 3/4-straws, and tape one end to the center post and one end to each of side posts about 4 inches up from base. Do the same with the five 1/4-straws about 4 inches from the top of the tower. Take three more straws, cut them in half and use five of the half-straws to repeat this process in the center of the tower.

  4. Tape every connection again

    For additional sturdiness, tape every connection one more time.