Red Baron ..Look Out!

by Ken C
(Two Rivers, WI, USA)

Red Baron, Look Out!

Red Baron, Look Out!

Several years ago I bought a G-Kites Red Baron. We took it to our local kite fest here in Two Rivers, WI. and flew it for the first time. After looking at all of the kites in the air that day, I commented to my wife that there really should be a Snoopy up there with him. This is something I have toyed with for the last few years...

Well, a few weeks ago, I decided, enough thinking, it was time to sit and attempt to design this thing. And so the doodling started. After a lot of eraser marks, it started to take shape, on paper at least.

Now, I have never designed a kite, especially not a 3D kite. The thoughts of will this thing actually work were running rampant, but in my mind, I was pretty certain I had it figured out, and so construction began.

Basically I designed a box kite with an attached roof. The Snoopy image was found online. The frame is constructed with 3/16" dowels and covered with red plastic table cloth. Keep in mind that this is just a prototype to see if it would work. If the design proved worthy, then I would build it out of nice rip stop nylon.

The corners are joined with plastic drinking straws, a method I also found online. Snoopy himself is 2 pieces of white plastic glued together on the edges with 2 dowels and a loop of weed eater line to help him hold his shape. He is attached to the roof with a few small tabs if Velcro. 2 well placed holes in the roof help filter air into his body for added support.

Construction was done and it was time for the initial test flight. I attached the line in the center of the "X" and the roof point. The wind picked up and there it went, only to tip and nose dive into the ground, breaking one of my dowels. After replacing the broken dowel, I did some more brainstorming. I was now confident that if I could bridle this thing correctly, it would work. I decided to try a 5 point bridle, testing and measuring in an attempt to get the angles right, all while sitting on my kitchen table. My wife, of course, thought I was becoming obsessed. I was going to get it right, one way or another.

Time for the 2nd test flight, this time, success! The wind picked up to around 8 mph., and, up he went, this time flying as he should. There is nothing like the feeling of designing something and seeing it work for the first time, no matter how complex or simple that thing might be. The wind let up and again the roof tipped down, but this time, as the wind picked back up, he righted himself and flew as he should. As he came back down, I waited for the wind to pick back up again. This time I held him upside down to see what it would do. The wind took the dog house and he flipped right side up and away he flew! Success!

I just made a trip to the fabric store to get my rip stop nylon. Now to get cutting. Red Baron, look out!

Comments for Red Baron ..Look Out!

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Kites Over Lake Michigan
by: Ken C.

Here is a link of our kite festival with Snoopy doing his thing.

Great post.
by: Tim Parish

Thanks for reporting on all that effort and persistence here. A home-made kite that flies well is always gratifying. Even more in your case, since you didn't start with a proven design!

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to YOUR Kite Making Stories!.

E-book special of the month...

Barn Door is a traditional American design, and this MBK version has delighted many of this site's visitors over the years.

If you have made Diamonds before, this kite is only a small step up in difficulty.

Get the e-book for making the MBK Barn Door kite. Down to a mere $2.95 for this month.

The MBK Barn Door is a reliable flyer over the Light to Moderate wind range. Tail(s) are entirely optional, if the kite is made according to the instructions.

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. Flying A Kid's Kite

    Oct 26, 16 07:00 AM

    A previously published page which offers some thoughts on how small children relate to kite flying - broken down into age-groups. Partially based on experiences with our own son, Aren...

    Read More



Kite-making e-book: Simplest Dowel Kites

This one's FREE
Download it now!

More E-books...


"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'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

thank you"

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