How To Make A Sode Kite
Step-by-Step - Page 1 of 4
The MBK Dowel Sode
This set of instructions on how to make a Sode kite assumes you know absolutely nothing about kite making. You might already have some
of the simple tools and materials required.
Anything you don't have is
easily bought. If not exactly what I used, then at least something
MBK Dowel Sode is a large tail-less design based on the traditional
Japanese kite. Like the other Japanese design in this series, the
Rokkaku, this kite is a light to moderate wind flier. However, it can take a little more wind strength than the Rok.
The Sode scoots around the sky in very gusty moderate
winds. In smoother and lighter winds, it is a very efficient and
Setting up on the flying field is just a matter of attaching the
bow-line toggles to put some curvature into both the horizontal spars. Also, the upper bow-line is connected to the nose of the kite and the lower bow-line connects to the tail. Thus, the horizontal spars are tensioned away from each other.
Then, when the
flying line is attached to the bridle, you are ready to
launch! The method of attachment is illustrated further down this page.
NOTE: Video views from this website don't appear to be counted.
I have chosen to make '1 Dowel Length' equal to 120cm for every kite in
the Dowel series. If you are in North America, 48" of 3/16" dowel is
close enough to 120cm of 5mm dowel. This will result in a kite with
similar flying characteristics to my original.
How To Make A Sode Kite
Now's the time to read up on the kite making tools and materials required for making a Dowel Sode, if you haven't already.
The template shown above represents one side of the kite sail. You will now transfer these measurements to the sail plastic as follows...
- Firstly, take a large bag that you want to use for the sail, and lay it flat on the floor.
dots on the plastic which correspond to the corners of the Template.
There is no need to use a T-square, or an extra-long ruler since any
small errors in position will be duplicated on the other side of the
- Using the marking pen, rule lines between the dots, as in
the photo. For lines longer than the ruler, just add a few extra dots
using one of the dowel spars as a ruler! Then it's easy to connect the
dots with a ruler. It's probably best not to rule the whole line with the dowel, since it bends easily.
- Flip the plastic bag over, and trace over all the black lines using your marker pen and ruler.
out a rectangular section of the bag containing the kite sail, open it
out and lay it flat on the floor - you can now see the complete sail outline, as in the photo.
When doing the following, most of the width of the tape should be inside
the kite's outline. Use a single length of tape for each line. Hold it
out straight, touch it down to the plastic at one end, then at the other
end, dab it down in the middle, then press down all along its length.
- Lay clear sticking tape along all the lines, letting it overlap at the corners.
- With scissors, cut along all the black lines. This will leave most of the width of the sticking tape inside the sail outline. See the photo.
- Where indicated by the yellow rectangles, reinforce those 2 corners with extra sticking tape. On both sides of the plastic for extra strength!
Continue to page 2
E-book special of the month (25% off)...
e-book takes you step-by-step through making a 120cm (4 ft)
diameter Parasail kite. This kite performs well in gentle to moderate
wind speeds. That's from 12 to 28 kph or from 8 to 18 mph. It pulls
hard for it's size, so should not be flown by very small kids!
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 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.
Apr 26, 17 06:00 AM
Coincidentally, this previously published page has recently been updated. The Adelaide International Kite Festival for 2017 was held earlier this month...
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