A Dowel-Delta-Kite Success Story!
by Craig E.
(Lebanon, OR, USA)
In flight at 100 feet
After several years of searching for a kite that is capable of flying on even the lightest of breezes, I have finally found it! The MBK Dowel Delta was soaring at nearly 500 feet in a very light breeze!
Once again, the build was a fairly easy 3 hour project. There was one occasion where I misread the plans while cutting the plastic sheet. This goof left me with a 33 1/2 inch sail from top to bottom. I think we all know the adage - "measure once, cut twice." Oops, I think it's actually "measure twice, cut once."
This time, I followed the plans when it came to spar thickness. However, I left out the doubler on the spreader. The flying weight was just 3.5 oz.
It is an outstanding kite for those of you who want to build on the tightest budget imaginable! I have a grand total of $2.07 worth of dowels! The rest was stuff I already had.
Today was the first flight of my MBK Dowel Delta kite! It flew very nicely up to about 470 feet AGL at a 70 degree angle! I don't think the FAA would've liked that, but I was keeping a sharp eye out for any air traffic that could be an issue.
I did find that it needed some extra drag to keep it from gliding into the wind. One tail on each wing tip helped quite a bit. Also, I can trim these tails to fix a droopy wing.
I was also pleasantly surprised by the light pull on my reel. Since most of my flying is at the beach, I spend a lot of effort making sure nobody can get hit by the wreckage when my kite breaks and falls to the ground. It was a nice change of pace being able to set the reel on the grass and play catch with my son.
Seeing as how nothing really bad happened other than having to bring the kite down and go home for dinner, I don't think there is much else to say about this kite.
Although I am VERY pleased with this light wind kite, I will bring a lawn chair next time so I don't get a stiff neck from staring straight up for most of the flight!
As mentioned earlier, there's another alternative to towing indoor kites if it's just not possible to fly outdoors...