Balinese Long Tail Kites
I have just returned from Bali and saw these amazing kites with long tails. I am looking at these from a commercial point of view that on the tail section advertising could be placed and flown from over the business.
Do you have plans or details on how these are built? I am thinking a 10 metre tail would be about the size required.
Here is a YouTube link for these kites...
Saw your video - spectacular! Guess you must have caught the Bali International Kite festival. Those very big kites are one of the local traditional designs, made from bamboo spars and cotton cloth sails. For example, the Bebean or Fish Kite which has a forked tail. Perhaps you saw some of them too? Those long tails are probably cotton also, judging by how they ripple in the wind. Did you hear the 'hummers' as they flew?
Unfortunately for you, I'm not sure whether detailed plans or instructions even exist on paper or the Web. Most of it is in old guys' heads, I suspect! If anyone reading this knows better, feel free to drop in here with a comment on this post.
However, any large stable kite should do the trick. You could try doubling, or even tripling up all the dimensions of my Dowel Rokkaku, and then attaching a long rectangular sheet of fairly light material of appropriate width to the lower edge of the kite sail. Spinnaker nylon perhaps. Or drop-sheet plastic.
I suggest the Rok because it is quite a straight-forward build, and very stable. For the size I suggested, you would want to fly it on no less than 150 pound line.
A warning - don't expect to put up a big kite and then assume it will stay up all day. It might not, for any number of reasons. Too little wind, and it will drift to the ground. Too much wind and something could eventually fail, bringing the kite to earth rather quickly! Or, due to inaccuracies in construction or variations in the spar dowel, the kite could start to loop to one side as it approaches the limit of its wind range.
So, whatever lies beneath the kite - roads, houses, the ocean (!), powerlines (!!) - is a potential landing spot ;-)
Having just said all that, it could still be a good idea in some situations as long as the flight can be monitored from time to time. I can imagine it would draw plenty of attention! Actually, the sail area of a large Rokkaku can itself be a canvas for advertising. A local kite shop sometimes does just that with its own large Rok, at our Adelaide Kite Festival over the Easter weekend each year.
Hope I haven't put you off the idea entirely, anything half-feasable is worth a try...
P.S. Just noticed on a web page by a certain free online encyclopedia, the kites you videoed would be the Janggan form of traditional Balinese kite which "has a broad flowing cloth tail that can reach more than 100 meters in length".
E-book special of the month (25% off)...
e-book takes you step-by-step through making a 120cm (4 ft) tall
Parafoil kite. This 4-cell kite performs best in gentle to moderate
wind speeds. That's 12 to 28kph or 8 to 18mph. Even in light
winds, this kite will hang in the air, although at 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 Parafoil 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.
May 10, 17 06:00 AM
This previously published page is a mixture of informative data and historical background. Also there is also a video of one of my own tetrahedral designs in flight!