The Slip Knot
And Its Kiting Applications
A small knot in the end of the line prevents this Slip knot from
coming undone. At least in theory! In practice, the loop can still
loosen off with handling, allowing even a large knot to slip through.
tiny dob of glue will make the knot permanent after it is first tied and
tightened. Alternatively, you can simply check all the knots before
each flight, re-tightening where necessary. They are less likely to
For a Double Wrap Slip Knot, just wrap the line around the spar twice instead of once, before slipping the Loop knot through. Not surprisingly, this version stays tight a lot longer.
I have used this knot many times for securing bridle lines to
spars. If you keep the Loop knot as small as possible, it doesn't look too
untidy. It's a good idea to not fix the knots with glue until after the
kite has had it's first test flight or 2. Just in case you decide to
make any changes!
For a Barn Door kite which stays rigged, this knot can attach the bridle lines to the frame and hold the spars together where they cross. However, I soon discovered that fixing the knots with glue was necessary. The constant flexing of the spars in flight tended to quickly loosen off the knots!
For a time, I experimented with using the single-wrap knot to
secure the sail corner ties of the Dowel Roller and Dopero to the
horizontal spar. You have no adjustment though, so I'm sticking with
Half Hitches now. Not the most secure, but at least you can adjust the
length of the tie, if you don't get it right the first time. It's just a
matter of unpicking the knot and re-tying.
One last tip... It is simpler and neater to use a Simple knot instead of a Loop to stop the line from pulling through. However, it is not as reliable due to the much smaller size of the knot. It just might be suitable for some applications though!
Now, if you really
want to go overboard with knot-tying...
The book Knots: The Complete Visual Guide
has an amazing average review score of 5 stars from 12 reviewers - the last time I looked. If it's a more general
knot-tying resource you need, this would definitely be it!
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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