A Great Date

by AJ
(Asheville, NC, USA)


I found this site about a month ago. My girlfriend works a job where she has to leave and be gone for a week at a time. It's a taxing job and I'm always looking for relaxing ways to spend our days upon her return. While gone she called to say that she wanted to do something both technical and crafty to help her decompress. I managed to come up with build a kite.

We built the barn-door kite. I toiled over finding the proper materials, and as we began building we were both uncertain the thing would actually even work. But with wine, your instructions, and my lady's artistic talent we were able to put together something that looked like it might, just might, fly.

We took the kite up to a spot we'd both been longing to go. Max Patch. It's this unbelievable field on the peak of a mountain. There's a 360 view of the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains. What a spot.

We arrived on our 3 month anniversary with storm clouds quick behind us. We had to give a shot. I held out barn-door kite over my head and the wind took it immediately. It sailed right up into the sky with ease.

It was so beautiful. My lady wrapped her arms around me and we watched the storm come across the valley, our kite flying on it's head wind. Super magical moment.

Thanks so much for making this moment available to us. Your instructions were incredibly detailed, and at times quite painstakingly and frustratingly so. But with them we created this kite, this flying thing. Flying, like we are. Thank you.

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More than the kite
by: Tim Parish

Great submission, thanks! What a classic location for an initial test flight. Hope you both get plenty more flying out of the Barn Door, even if the occasions don't always measure up to the very first one...

BTW, I've shifted your post to the Make A Barn Door page where it can encourage other builders of the same kite.

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This printable e-book takes you step-by-step through making a 119 cm (4 ft) wide Parachute kite. It's not quite that wide in the air since the canopy takes on a distinct curved shape when inflated. This 14-cell kite performs best in moderate to fresh wind speeds. That's 20 to 38 kph or 13 to 24 mph. In gentle winds, this kite will hang in the air at fairly low line angles. In fresh winds, it pulls firmly for it's size, so small kids should only fly it while supervised!

Every kite design in the MBK Soft Series satisfies the following points...

  • Materials are plastic sheet, tape and line – and nothing more!
  • Tools are a ruler, scissors and a marker pen - and nothing more!
  • All cuts are along straight lines.

For the greatest chance of success, I make recommendations regarding the materials. For example, the type/weight of plastic, type/width of tape and line type/strength. Close enough should nearly always be good enough, since the design is well-tested and should be tolerant of small differences from my original.

Get the e-book for making the MBK Parachute kite. After making your first one in plastic and seeing how it performs, you can try soft Tyvek or rip-stop nylon for your next build.

The e-book is a PDF file - which means printable instructions to refer to while you make the kite. It also means convenient off-line access if that suits you better.



What's New!

  1. Rokkaku Kite

    Aug 16, 17 06:00 AM

    This previously published page is full of general info on this type of kite, including some history. With a video clip and a good photo, it's worth checking out...

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Testimonials
(unedited)

"Love the easy to understand step by step instructions, made from next to nothing materials and above all so much fun to fly... cheers Tim for sharing your well thought out pdf kite designs with the whole world.

Very satisfying making your own and watching them get air-born for the first time."

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"I decided to run kite making as an elective again on this camp in the past week - so I bought all your e-books, a bunch of materials, and then took a group of 10 high school students through making the kites over 4 days. We built a diamond, a Barn Door, a Delta, and two skew delta kites. Again - every single kite flew."

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"I've just bought your super e-book and spent most of last night pouring through all the great stuff in it!

Very detailed and USEFUL information - thanks for such a great book."

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"30+ years ago, I tried making a kite using the 'instructions' in a free kite-safety booklet. What a disappointment for a young boy.

 Your instructions and methods are wonderful. You help the builder to focus on accuracy, without making it hard. Also, you use materials that are durable, yet cheap!"

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thank you"




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Wind Speeds


Light air
1-5 km/h
1-3 mph
1-3 knots
Beaufort 1

Light breeze
6–11 km/h
4–7 mph
4–6 knots
Beaufort 2    

Gentle breeze
12–19 km/h
8–12 mph
7–10 knots
Beaufort 3    

Moderate breeze
20–28 km/h
13–18 mph
11–16 knots
Beaufort 4    

Fresh breeze
29–38 km/h
19–24 mph
17–21 knots
Beaufort 5    

Strong breeze
39–49 km/h
25–31 mph
22–27 knots
Beaufort 6

High Wind
50-61 km/h
32-38 mph
28-33 knots
Beaufort 7