How to Build a Box Kite
Add Cross Pieces
First, take a good look at the top photo. The cross pieces both go under one middle spar and over the other one. Hence the kite can be opened out into a box shape.
Another two cross-pieces need to be fitted now, to make the kite
rigid. However, due to the inexact nature of working with bamboo skewers
and plastic, you need to fit each one individually. Here's how:
- Take a bamboo skewer, and snip it to a length just a little longer than one of the cross pieces already in place.
- By trial and error, trim the bamboo down until you can just squeeze it into place next to an existing cross piece, but diagonal to it.
- Mark the cross piece and the two main-spars it touches so you can put
it back in the same spot later. Remove the cross piece and glue small
pieces of bamboo to it, just like the two already done.
- There's just one more cross piece to do. Fit the last cross piece in place
in the same way, at the other end of the kite. Make more marks so you
know where this one goes too. When its length is just right, glue the
small pieces on and wait for the glue to dry.
The bottom photo is a closeup, with my markings visible on a main spar and one of the cross pieces. The other cross piece had single marks instead of double, to tell them apart. Hope you get the idea!
How to Build a Box Kite
Dacron line in 20 to 50-pound strength is ample for all the Skewer Series kites.
- Measure 0.3 SL (8.7 cm, 3 1/2 in.) in from one end of a spar (half the
width of the sail), and use a spare skewer to poke a small hole through
the plastic, on either side of the spar.
- Cut off a 3.0 SL (87 cm, 34 1/2 in.) length of flying line, and tie a small Loop knot into one end.
- Attach the looped end to the kite, by passing it in one hole and out
the other. Feed the other end of the line through the loop and pull
tight around the bamboo—see the photo.
- Add a small length of clear sticky tape onto the sail plastic, to
prevent the bridle shifting forward and stretching the plastic. The
yellow rectangle on the photo shows where the tape is.
- Attach the other end of the line to the same spar, just behind the join of the two skewers, using a couple of Half Hitches. Smear a drop of wood glue all around the bamboo and into the knot, to hold it secure.
Now take a length of flying line about 1.0 SL (29 cm, 11 1/2 in.) long, and tie one end to the bridle line with a Prusik knot or any other shiftable knot. Tie a small Double Loop knot into the other end.
All this is visible in the above photo. At this point, you've pretty much finished making the MBK 2-Skewer Box kite!
Now, I had some trouble with the cross pieces falling out while the kite flew in rough air. Hence you might like to glue
the cross pieces in place! The kite is a convenient size to put in the
car, fully rigged, and won't take up much space in a shed.
As mentioned earlier, there's more kite making on this site than you can poke a stick at :-)
Want to know the most convenient way of using it all?
The Big MBK E-book Bundle is a collection of downloads — printable PDF files which provide step-by-step instructions for many kites large and small.
Every kite in every MBK series.
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