Last week I remembered that years ago I made a cardboard model of a ring of eight cubes forming another cube, but interconnected in such a way that it could be folded through itself turning the original cube inside out. I had a search of the interwebs and found a page about the Magic Cube with some helpful animated gifs.

I spent some time scribbling on paper trying to figure out a net, and eventually came up with one using two pieces: one for each side of the cube. There is a a H shaped cut in the middle, and the tabs around the outside of each sheet attach to the inside edges of the other sheet. Each sheet forms eight corners (half a cube) - gluing the inner tabs to their neighbouring edges is quite simple.

Once each sheet is glued to itself it can be rotated through its central hole - set one up so it meshes nicely with the other and then the hard part: gluing all the tabs from each sheet to the other. It helps to use relatively stiff but not too thick card (I recycled some brightly coloured A4 folder dividers), and twisting the ring of cubes through itself while the glue is setting helps to make sure all is aligned correctly and also puts pressure on the right places.

Here are some pictures of work in progress:

You can download the Magicube net (600dpi SVG) and also the Magicube net generator source (Haskell using 'diagrams'), and have fun building your own!