Without delving into too much detail about specific large kites, here's a few notes about the very biggest such creations in the world. But just before I start on that, here's a photo of the biggest kite my family has seen so far, a Blue Whale inflatable...
Several Asian cultures have been flying truly enormous kites for centuries. For example, in Japan, rectangular giant kites are flown on special occasions. Each kite has dozens of lines attached all over its face. A large team of men is required to hold the lines as the kite soars up in a fresh breeze. These are not light-wind kites!
Peter Lynn the well-known kite designer has created several very large 'soft' kites that compare in size to an entire football field! These have been flown at various International Kite Festivals around the world. In contrast to the Japanese giants, these kites require relatively light, smooth winds.
Big kite festivals almost always feature impressively sized inflatable kites which are popular with the crowds. The most common theme seems to be sea creatures. This has a lot to do with the intriguingly realistic movement these kites exhibit as they gracefully distort and sway in the air. The impression is like swimming. Although not a real creature, my favorite was an extremely detailed and long Dragon inflatable which I saw at the Adelaide International Kite festival in March 2009.Now, something like this 9-ft. Teknacolor Delta kite would qualify as a 'large kite' for you or me to own and fly, I'm sure! I have a home-made Delta of similar size and it has no trouble pulling most of the bow out of a 200 pound Dacron line in light to gentle breezes.
Size alone doesn't determine price. However, for a given kind of kite, this is true since the costs of materials goes up with increasing size. If the wing span is doubled, the total sail area is 4 times greater. Complexity is another factor. Some of the single-line parafoils require huge numbers of stitches, and have complex bridles. Hence the labor costs push up the prices of these big kites.
A few general categories regarding cost...
Here's a photo of one of those inflatables mentioned earlier. It's a Maxi Ray by Peter Lynn. The size isn't evident from the photo, so here are the figures - spans 9.8 meters (32 feet) and is 29 meters (96 feet) long!
Photo courtesy of Jeffrey Burka.
Let's consider what owning large kites might mean. Four things came to my mind ...
That list at the top also touches on 4 common types of large kites...
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