"Kirby" the Delta Kite
by Mark R.
(The Woodlands, TX, USA)
Flying at about 60 yards.
I used a plain, pink, plastic table cloth as the material, with the recommended dowel rods. A few of my friends and I cut and trimmed the table cloth and rods to the length specified. Overall it took about 3 hours. It was our first kite making experience!
I grabbed some 50 lb fishing line, and we then set out to go fly this kite, which we named Kirby, because it's pink and it flies. Ha...
At first there was hardly any wind, but eventually a nice breeze came along, estimated at around 2-3 mph. Kirby easily took off and soared quite high in the steady breeze. It ended in a crash landing that broke the spreader dowel rod.
I decided that I didn't want that to happen again, so I went back to the hardware store to get a bigger size (2 sized up) dowel rod than the one specified. I re-purposed the broken rod since most of the length was still intact by using electrical tape to support the new spreader rod. This made the spreader extra beefy, and I believe would allow it to withstand higher wind=speeds.
On my second attempt, I visited the nearby lake. The light wind was blowing out over the lake, thankfully away from all the kids that were in the park. I didn't want Kirby to dive-bomb some child, potentially severely hurting him or her.
With his new and improved spreader, Kirby needed slightly more wind to take off, but not much. He soared so high from the steady breeze, that I nearly ran out of my 250 yard spool of fishing line. I got a little ambitious with letting out so much line...
All of a sudden, Kirby decides that he wants to go for a swim...
From an estimated 150 yards of elevation. He starts to turn toward the lake, and goes down... and down... and down. It took what seemed like an eternity. All the while I'm reeling in the loose slack, trying to regain control. Kirby eventually slams into the water and sinks.
Onlookers are vocally worried about Kirby as I begin to fish him out of the water. It takes about 10 minutes to slowly reel in all of the line. Kirby appears from the dark depths of the lake under the dock I'm standing on.
The onlookers cheer that Kirby is retrieved while I check all of the tape and string. Aside from some leaves, the only thing that was different were the leading edge spars. They were obviously soaked, and because of that, they were bowed out some instead of straight.
I attempted to fly him again since I didn't think any modifications were necessary. It took even more wind than normal because it was still wet, plus the leading edge spars wouldn't hold as much air. It still caught and flew for a few minutes before I had to leave. I think with the leading edge spars bent backwards like they are now, I'll be able to fly it in even faster winds, since it won't catch the air as well.
All in all, it's been a huge success, and I hope to build another kite soon.
E-book special of the month (25% off)...
The Roller is a WW2 vintage design which is quite well known among more experienced kite enthusiasts. With it's upper and lower sails, this design has an attractive aircraft-like appearance in the air. This MBK version excels in light winds.
If you have made Diamonds before, this kite takes a little more time to make. With the help of my instructions, it's still do-able by a beginner.
Get the e-book for making the MBK Dowel Roller 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.
This Roller takes advantage of any rising air that happens to come by. By substituting a slightly wider diameter vertical spar, the kite remains comfortable right to the top of the Moderate wind range. Tail(s) are entirely optional, but may be added for looks.
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.
Feb 27, 17 06:02 AM
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