ZipStix Instructions

Elevated Dodecahedron, a solid composed of twelve regular pentagons, with pentagonal pyramids attached for rigidity

Pieces required: 90 ZipStix (requires three ZipStix Stella sets) and 32 zipties.

1. Start by making six pentagonal pyramids: pentagons of five ZipStix with one additional junction connected to each of the corners of the pentagon.

2. The plan is now to take one pyramid and join another pyramid to each of the five sides of its base. The connection is performed along a side of the base of the other pyramid as well.

3. However, there is one excess ZipStik in each such joining: each of the two pyramids has a ZipStik along the sides of the bases being joined, but after joining there should be just a single ZipStik connecting the two joined corners.

4. Therefore, the process of joining two pyramids is to release the zip ties on the four corners where the join will occur, two on each pyramid, and then remove the one extra ZipStik altogether, as well as both zipties at the ends of the removed ZipStik, and then link the corners where the zipties have been removed onto the corresponding ziptie of the base of the other pyramid.

5. Use the procedure outlined in step 4 to join one pyramid to each side of a central pyramid. Make sure all of the pyramids point in the same direction.

6. Next, the pyramids that are attached to adjacent sides of the central pyramid are also going to be joined to each other. The process is the same as before, in that you must remove one ZipStik, but the corners have already been joined at one end, so you only end up removing one ziptie, not two.

7. Once you have joined all five of the outer pyramids, you should have created a “dome” of six pentagonal pyramids. This is half of the final structure. It would be nice to make another copy of this and then join the two copies along their outermost edges. However, you may not have enough ZipStix to redo all of steps one through six. So instead, we will continue to add pentagonal pyramids one at a time. As you add them, make sure that all of the pyramids point “out” of the resulting structure.

8. Make another pentagonal pyramid.

9. Join it along two adjacent outermost edges of the structure completed in step 6, using the same procedures as described in steps 4 and 6.

10. Make another pentagonal pyramid.

11. This time, you will need to join it to the structure along three consecutive edges, one from the pyramid added in step 9, and two from the first half of the dodecahedron.

12. Make another pentagonal pyramid, and as before, join it along three edges, one from one of the new pyramids and two from the first half.

13. Repeat step 12 exactly.

14. Make another pentagonal pyramid.

15. There will be two possible spots where it can go, joining along four of the edges of its base. Join it in either spot.

16. You should have five ZipStix left. Join all of them to each other at one end.

17. The resulting assembly has five free ends. Join them to the five corners of the last remaining pentagonal “hole” that does not have a pyramid on it. If you want, you can join this last pyramid “inside out” (i.e pointing toward the center of the dodecahedron) if you want the final sculpture to stand on one face easily.

18. As always, if all looks good, tighten your junctions!


Open the gallery below to view photos of instruction steps.