The Half Hitch Knot

And Its Kiting Applications

The simple Half Hitch has many uses, but I have just a few for the MBK Kites. In particular, the Roller and Dopero kites, where this knot is easily unpicked to adjust the wing-tip ties where they attach to the lower horizontal spar. However, this is also it's main disadvantage in that it eventually comes loose! It's fine for a single long flight though.

Another very handy application is attaching a plastic ribbon tail around the lower end of a vertical spar. A single hitch is quick and easy, yet sufficiently secure. The crushed plastic helps to prevent loosening, and the forces on a tail in flight are very low anyway. I have never lost a tail this way!

Knowing your knots is particularly handy if you make your own kites at home...

The Big MBK Book Bundle is a collection of downloads - printable PDF files which provide step-by-step instructions for many kites large and small.

Back to the Half Hitch...

Tying the Half Hitch knot - step 1.
Tying the Half Hitch knot - step 3.
Tying the Half Hitch knot - step 5.
Tying the Half Hitch knot - step 2.
Tying the Half Hitch knot - step 4.
Tying the Half Hitch knot - step 6.

Actually, there is one other use for the Half Hitch in the Dowel kites... The nose of the Sode has a loop tied around it, when rigged ready to fly. The loop is Lark's Headed around the upper horizontal spar's bow-line. Effectively, it's just 2 lines side-by-side, which are then hitched around the nose of the kite to hold some tension in the sail. Because of all the insulation tape over the nose, just the one hitch seems to hold fine! A bit surprising, but it sure is handy since it's very easy to unpick before packing down the kite.

If multiple hitches are used in any situation, the top one will quickly loosen off unless it's secured with glue. Eventually, the next hitch starts to loosen too, and so on down the line...

You can use a couple of hitches to attach a bridle line to its spar, as long as a drop of glue is added. In this situation the glue can also be used to prevent the knot from shifting along the spar. These days I prefer to use a Double Wrap Slip Knot here.





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Click here to buy anything you need. Just use the Search box in there if you need different weights or lengths of line, for example.

P.S. Keep an eye out for books by kite author Glenn Davison, a prominent kite person in the USA.




What's New!

  1. Making Paper Kites - A Step-By-Step Guide

    Sep 18, 18 12:58 AM

    Making Paper Kites is a fully photo-illustrated step-by-step guide to making high-flying Sled, Diamond, Rokkaku, Sode and Delta kites from just copier paper and sticky tape. Even the spars are paper-a…

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Plenty of fun kite info, photos and videos - there's definitely too much here for only one visit! Feel free to leave your impressions of this site or just this page, below...



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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