Unusual Kite Shapes

Downright Funny In Some Cases!

There are some fairly unusual kite shapes in these half dozen large photos, I think you'll agree! In gathering these, I steered clear of unusual kites that are easily found in on-line kite shops, festival photo galleries or other listings. So here they are, from the Flikr community to you...

This design could be called a Cowboy Duck Kite, and would not be out of place on my Funny Kites page! What a mixture of kite shapes. The upper end looks like half a Rokkaku, while the bottom end vaguely resembles a Roller.

I like how the lines tethering the lower sail help to define the edges of the face. Even the lines were not there, the overall effect is still that of a face. Well, a cartoon duck head anyway. The design seems pretty sound actually. I can imagine it flying high and stable on a long line.

It's not often you come across a genuinely asymmetric kite. In this case, the main lifting portion of the design is based on a Delta. However, from the trailing edge back, the left and right sides have several differences in outline.

But of course, the thing that leaps out at you is the very appealing Panda image! A real attention-getting kite, this one, even if its size is not particularly impressive.

The basic outline of this kite has some similarities to the well-known Butterfly kite shapes. That is, an upper and lower set of lifting surfaces, with a central lifting surface as well. On a Butterfly, it's the single set of wings that takes on this general shape, since the body is either painted-on or a quite slim 3D construction.

This turtle has realistic 'flippers' for sails, surrounding a 'shell', plus a 3D body which inflates from the 'mouth' air vent. All up, a fairly un-common creature kite if you ask me! I can't imagine it being a super-efficient flier. But as long as it stays up there, showing off its looks, that's all that is needed.

This 3D Shark kite shares some similarities to the turtle, in its basic configuration. Flat sails, coupled with a semi-inflatable 3D body. The realistic tail, dorsal fin and mouth detail combine to make a smile-provoking kite! It has the ability to make a very funny first impression.

Again, I don't think anyone would buy something like this for its flying characteristics! Part of the humor lies in the fact that it is not as realistic as one of those giant inflatable Killer Whale kites, for example. Do you agree?

This Ladybug kite is quite a unique design! A really creative 'art kite'. The general outline is very roughly like Diamond kite shapes, in that the maximum sail area occurs less than 50 percent of the distance from the nose to the tail end. Of course, the different colored segments making up the 'wings' ensure that no-one would ever point at it and say 'oh, look at that Diamond kite!'.

Don't you love the tail on this thing - another little Ladybug! Well, I'm sure it works. Anything light enough and with enough air resistance will work as a stabilizing kite tail.

Now, I've seen this rotating Hex box kite idea in a kite shop listing or 2, but decided to include it here anyway. It's just so far removed from most kite shapes people are familiar with! In fact, I saw one of these at a recent festival, quite high up and rotating slowly and mysteriously in the breeze. Have another look at the photo and see how those little triangular sails are set at an angle to the breeze.

OK, this hexagonal box kite is hanging up indoors... But just imagine it on the end of a flying line, with a long rod poked through those axle-holes so the whole thing can rotate without snaring the bridle lines. An interesting box kite indeed!

E-book special of the month (25% off)...

Click to get 'Making The MBK Parachute Kite'

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. Flight Report:
    Some Kites Just Need The Beach

    Aug 21, 17 03:11 AM

    The local kite club bought a load of second hand gear - including kites - from interstate some months ago... With the power supposedly being cut sometime between 8am and 3pm today, it was an opportuni…

    Read More


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Kite-making e-book: Simplest Dowel Kites

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"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."


"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."


"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."


"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!"


"omg i made a kite from this site and i fly it ....... booom i didnt expect this bc in the other sites instuction are trash

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Kite-making e-book: Simplest Dowel Kites

This one's FREE
Download it now!

More E-books...

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