Kites: Site Blog

Welcome to this Site Blog on kites. The bigger the better in our view! Are you keen on KAP (Kite Aerial Photography) in particular?

This page will keep you right up to date with our Flight Report posts, new KAP pages added to the site and occasional contributions from visitors. Visitors sometimes include photos or links to videos too.

My own Flight Report videos pop up on the MBK Facebook page nearly every week.

Clicking on the orange button up there on the left will ensure you never miss a post. Running your cursor over that button will also bring up alternative ways to subscribe. Use whatever is most familiar to you.

Mobile users: You'll need to scroll right down or click the navigation button to find the orange RSS button.

(P.S. Just once a week, a good quality older page will pop up here too, so it doesn't stay buried forever. I'm sure you'll find them to be a good read!)

Here's all the latest posts - enjoy....

Dec 18, 2014

Most Recent Festival In Adelaide

If at all possible, we document the local kite festival each year, taking plenty of photos, video or both. Word-pictures play a part too! Here's an account of the most recent event...

Continue reading "Most Recent Festival In Adelaide"

Dec 18, 2014

Flight Report:
Fresh Wind Sled Thrown In The Deep End

Today was a good opportunity to test whether my cut-down version of the huge Multi-Dowel Sled would do well in strong wind. Well, it turned out to be a torture test alright...

A brief foray out to just 15 meters (50 feet) of line revealed an oversight - the 1.5m (5ft) spars were only secured at the top and bottom ends and needed more attachment points to the sail. Particularly in strong and gusty conditions! In fact, I think it would be a good idea to secure them all the way from top to bottom. Can't be too safe when the sail pressure really piles on. I have seen Sled spars bend outwards as the kite approaches its limits.

After whacking on a few extra bits of tape in several spots along the side spars, the dark blue Sled leaped into the air once again. No chance of doing KAP in these winds - at least without a couple of drogues attached. The Sled was less stable than its Multi-Dowel cousin, due to the higher sail loading. But the extra strength was required, and this kite will be flown with drogues most of the time.

The kite eventually crashed into the field during a tight loop low down, splitting the sail in a couple of places. No broken dowels though. All in all, I think with drogues attached, this kite might be a decent KAP work-horse in winds ranging from about 15kph up to the mid-thirties.The spars are one-piece, so rig time is zero. Unless you count the few seconds spent attaching the flying line. Perhaps the big Box would be safer and even steadier between 30 and 40kph, but the darn thing takes so long to rig!

Today, at shoulder level, a brief wind meter check recorded an average of 16kph with gusts to 29kph. Meanwhile, the online weather station reported higher-level gusts to 37kph down here at Noarlunga.

About This Post: These days, most flight reports are in the short format you've just seen, above. Usually, video and/or photos from this flying session are posted a few days later on the MBK Facebook Page.

Dec 17, 2014

Flight Report:
Launching With Centimeters to Spare

Just on impulse, we dived out to the back yard late yesterday afternoon. With the ... Multi-Dowel Diamond. Quite comical really, given that the ideal launch direction meant the kite had to rise up from the skinny end of our back lawn.

There it was, propped up by the swing set that Aren no longer uses. A swift pull would jump-start the big blue kite, causing it to come forwards and up, just missing the sharp corner of our back verandah. And just missing some bush foliage on the opposite side.

Several short flights were had like this, into a very soft and variable breeze that was having a hard time negotiating houses, fences and trees. Never-the-less, the big Diamond almost got its teeth into some flight-sustaining wind as it drifted over the highest portion of our roof. Nearly every time, it was an exercise in judgement to bring the kite down on its face, to a safe landing spot. The Hills Hoist clothes-line was one such spot!

Aren (8) managed to take a few photos in the several seconds he had available on each flight.

Of course, when it was time to pack up and go indoors for tea, the breeze freshened ever so slightly. Grr. It would have been perfect for a flight of several minutes on perhaps 15m (50ft) of line!

"Simplest Dowel Kites": A free but very useful kite-making e-book. Make a super-simple Sled, Diamond and Delta - step-by-step with photos. Sign up for the e-book and also get an emailed series of messages called "MBK Tips'n'Ideas". If you don't need the e-book, consider signing up anyway... You won't believe the value on offer in that message series!

Dec 16, 2014

The New Search Box

In case you have not already noticed, there is now a Search feature on this website. At last, you say :-)

The new Search box is at the top of the right-hand column - just to the right of the main page title. You will find it on nearly all 1200+ pages of the site.

Go on - type a few things in and make some new discoveries! Some of the most interesting snippets of info have been provided by visitors who have contributed their kite stories in the past few years.

Dec 14, 2014

Flight Report:
AKFA December Kite Fly

The weather lived up to the forecast and provided good conditions for most of the AKFA members who turned up with their large kites. It turned out to be a mini version of the Adelaide kite festival, with many types of kites represented. Foils, Flowforms, inflatable creatures, soft stunters and sparred kites.

A quick check with a wind meter revealed an average of 20kph gusting to 28 kph from the SSW.

About the only thing that had trouble in this breeze strength was my little 2-Skewer Barn Door which could have done with much more tail. We were flying in a fairly confined area, and a row of short trees caught a few of us out from time to time! Dunes were upwind, and although fairly low, they still messed with the airflow up to around 50 feet or so above the grass.

My son (8 yrs) was impressed with the speed of the spinning drogues on one of the flowforms.

All in all, a good fly day was being had by all, as we left to head home which was an hour away to the South.

About This Post: These days, most flight reports are in the short format you've just seen, above. Longer format reports are done occasionally, which also feature photos and video taken on the day. Check out the full flight report pages on this site. Or even the aerial photography pages, which also contain flight reports.

Dec 11, 2014

Old Flight Report - Dowel Diamond Kite

Another old report, this time featuring the Dowel Diamond kite. Doing its thing in very light but occasionally gusty conditions.

Continue reading "Old Flight Report - Dowel Diamond Kite"

Dec 04, 2014

Old Flight Report - Dowel Sode Kite

This report featured the Dowel Sode kite on one of its first few flights. After reading this report, I think you'll want to make a this Sode for yourself!

Continue reading "Old Flight Report - Dowel Sode Kite"

Dec 01, 2014

Flight Report:
Climbing, Gliding, Circling, Drifting

Popped out for a short kiting session before lunch, with the Dowel Delta. Better early in the day than later, with a thunderstorm forecast for the evening!

The very light breeze appeared to be from the South-East at first. After a while though, it was clear that there was no consistent wind direction at all. That didn't stop the Dowel Delta from having a number of soaring flights on short line lengths up to 100 feet though.

Some video was taken while flying on various lengths of line. More than once, while in rising air, the kite powered past vertical before gliding around and finding its way back downwind again. All while less than 50 feet off the ground!

After having this kind of fun on short lines, some longer line flying was attempted, with limited success. There simply was not enough breeze for long enough to help the kite get much higher than about 100 feet. However, it was interesting flying, getting the Delta to do a variety of tricks on its single flying line... Climb-and-glide, hover, 360s, constant angle climbs and a few launches straight off the ground.

'Not enough wind' as onlookers are prone to say - but a lot better than nothing!

About This Post: These days, most flight reports are in the short format you've just seen, above. Usually, video and/or photos from this flying session are posted a few days later on the MBK Facebook Page.


New! Comments

Plenty of fun kite info, photos and videos - there's definitely too much here for only one visit! Feel free to leave your impressions of this site or just this page, below...

Apologies for this site's current lack of video when viewed on mobile devices...

For now, please view this site on a Desktop or Laptop computer to see the videos. And there's plenty of them!


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