KAP Report:
Wilfred Taylor Reserve

Included in this KAP Report: panorama, aerial stills

The breeze was almost too light for the big Multi-Dowel Barn Door kite, but plenty of KAP images were taken from high above the grass.

So high in fact, that the horizon was well above the top of an enormous tree just across the road from the reserve.


The panoramic photo below shows the almost cloudless sky and Wilfred Taylor Reserve in Morphett Vale. From the kite flier's perspective...

On arrival the wind was quite light from the South but seemed enough to get the kite up at least. The temperature was still fairly warm in the late afternoon. Only weak thermal lift about, which suits aerial photography just fine!

The wind meter recorded a 2.5kph average with a gust to 11.3kph near the ground. And somewhat sheltered from the prevailing breeze.


Lifter: The ever-reliable Multi-Dowel Barn Door kite, over there in the ...  photo. Oops, forgot to take the in-flight photos this time!

KAP Rig: Bamboo skewer tetrahedron with plastic camera sleeve, suspended from a Half-Picavet line. Camera pointing up-wind.

Camera: Pentax Optio WG-2 with built-in intervalometer. Some settings optimized for KAP, others yet to be tweaked.


Click on the thumbnail images below to see them much larger...

Flight Report

Down at the reserve, I swung into action with my standard routine. Panoramic shots of the reserve, laying out line, attaching the rig to the flying line. Then it was time to rig the kite and launch. This all went to plan, and soon the camera was into its pocket, up in the air and counting down to take its first shot. Oh yes, and infinity focus was set.

All perfect? Well, not quite - I had forgotten to take any in-flight shots of the kite before lifting off the camera in the rig...

Also, the kite had run out of puff just as I had finished securing the camera into the cradle. So some minutes were spent re-launching the kite. Despite the camera taking its first 10 shots of the nearest tree at a crazy angle from ground level, the remaining shots showed the view point climbing away to around 250 feet.

With less than optimal wind speeds, the big Multi-Dowel Barn Door kite struggled to maintain a 45 degree line angle. But the occasional mild gust did get the camera nice and high with the kite on 120 meters (400 feet) of line.

Next up was supposed to be the video run. Unfortunately, the camera ended up taking an 8 minute clip of the sky and the occasional bird flying past while I tried to re-launch the kite. The breeze had died further and KAP requires you to fly on a relatively short line for at least a few moments while the rig is prepared. Hence you can't resort to pulling the kite up on a long line!


No video taken this time, due to lack of wind. Couldn't get the kite back up!

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

  • Materials are plastic sheet, tape and line – and nothing more!
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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 Parasail 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. Flight Report:
    MBK Octopus #2 Floats

    Apr 27, 17 02:40 AM

    I'm still getting used to how far forward the towing point has to be on 'fat' kites...

    First, it was the MBK Parafoil - the towing point needed to be level with the leading edge. Now, with the Octopus…

    Read More


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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