Reliable, High Flying Without Tails!
Rokkaku kites are dependable, steep fliers and tail-less. Here's a few we have seen over the years, with comments.
All Roks have one vertical spar and two bowed horizontal spars,
forming a six-sided figure when covered with sail material. In theory, a
single-point bridle could work, but most Roks have at least 4-point
bridles to keep them steady in the air. Like the Dowel Rokkaku in the book cover over there on the right.
We've been to a few kite festivals over the years and taken plenty
of photos. There's some Rokkaku pictures among them, so see below for a
few large and elaborately decorated examples.
This Kabuki Rokkaku Koi
on Amazon is a typical store-bought Rok.
Rokkaku Kites Seen At Festivals
Here's 6 Rokkakus, each with a unique decorative design on the sail.
Firstly, 3 Roks with face designs from Japan. Yep, the 'real deal'. We
saw these being flown by men in traditional kite-flying garb. Next comes
a modern design, another traditional but non-face design and finally an
ad for a local kite shop!
Fearsome traditional Rok
This stern Sumarai looks like he is about to lop your head off with a
sharp sword... At least, that was my first impression. It might actually
be a Japanese deity or something else entirely! Anyway, it's a
traditionally decorated Japanese Rokkaku.
For reasons known only to the Japanese, this fearsome toothy character
has powdered his nose completely white... Another traditional Rokkaku.
Another Rok face (har har)
What is it with the white noses? Another striking face on a Rok kite.
I really like this design. A simple, but highly effective 3D graphic in bold colors. Perfect!
Distinctly Asian in form and color, the painting on this large Rok really stood out against the pale blue sky. Nice one!
Roks make good bill-boards
So it's advertising a local kite shop... What the heck, it's a very nice Rok!
The Kabuki Rokkaku Koi
is an example of a Rok kite which can be bought on-line - from Amazon in this case.
Out In The Field
Rokkaku kite stories of my real-life flying experiences are worth checking out!
Illustrated with photos and videos, of course.
There's our Dowel Rokkaku in flight, in the video above...
That's about it for this page on Rokkakus. Hope you enjoyed the pics!
E-book special of the month (25% off)...
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
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.
Aug 23, 17 06:00 AM
This previously published page gives a quick insight into the structure and materials of the original 'War Kites' by Samuel Cody. Plus some history and photos of course. Intriguing stuff...
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