Draw First Guide Line
First guide line drawn
Lay down the sail so the edge taping is
against the floor.
On one side of the sail, draw a straight line
from the top corner (photo left) to the bottom corner (photo
right), as shown. Be careful not to run over the thread!
Note: The line in the photo has been
enhanced since it was hard to see against the blue.
Draw Second Guide Line
Both guide lines drawn
Near each end of the first line, make a dot
9mm (3/8”) from the line, towards the middle of the sail.
- Draw through the dots to create another line
as in the photo. If you look closely, you should be able to see both
lines over the blue portion, going right to the edge.
Tape Outside Edge
One edge taped
Take one of the paper rectangles and lay it
down, aligned with the first guide line. The taped side
should be facing down.
- Tack in place with squares of sticky tape –
1 in the middle and 1 near each end.
- All good? Now lay a strip of tape down the
whole length, as indicated by the yellow rectangle in the photo.
- Trim off excess bits of tape with scissors.
Tape Inside Edge
Edge tacked at one end
Flip the paper rectangle across and flatten
it down, so the second guide line becomes visible.
- Go to one end and pull the free edge of the
rectangle across so it lines up with the guide line. Tack it
down with a short strip of tape, as indicated in yellow, in the
photo. See how the second guide line is just visible, towards the
right in the photo.
Edge tacked all along
Go to the other end of the rectangle
and tack it down also, in the same way as before.
- Go to the middle, and tack it down.
- Also tack down the 2 remaining gaps, until it
looks like the photo, with 5 pieces of tape.
Edge fully taped down
Finally, lay a piece of sticky tape along the
whole length and trim off excess bits with scissors as before.
- Also trim the top of the spar so it lines up
with the edge of the sail, as can be seen at the far left in the
Shape The Spar
Pinching started at one end
- Go to one end of the spar and carefully pinch
it between finger and thumb, as in the photo. The aim is to get
a crease right in the middle.
Note: The spar won't crease sharp because
of all the sticky tape, but pinch firmly anyway.
V-shape formed, all the way along
Work your way along the spar, pinching
tightly all the way. I like to use both hands at once, close
- Go all the way along and then back again, so
nothing is missed. You have created a spar that is stiff enough to
do the job required of it! See the photo.
Do The Other Spar
Second set of guide lines drawn
Draw lines on the sail where the other spar
will go, like a mirror-image of the first 2 lines. See the photo.
Like to see a video clip? Just scroll down to near the end...
Second spar taped and shaped
Take the remaining rectangle and tape down as
done for the first one. When taped on one side, it should flap
towards the middle of the sail like the other one did.
- Complete all the tacking and taping, then
shape the rectangle into a V-shaped spar. just like the first one.
There they both are in the photo.
Start With 2 Sheets
2 sheets of paper taped together
Line up the short edges of 2 sheets of
paper and tack together with a short length of sticky tape.
- Tape along the join, over the full width of
the paper. See the photo.
- Flip the sheets and tape over the join again.
Tail area measured and drawn
Measure a width of 20cm (8”) and a length
of 50cm (20”), marking dots on the paper.
- With pencil and ruler, mark out the tail area
as in the photo.
Note: The paper areas outside the
marked lines will look a little different if you are using Letter
size paper. But it's the marked rectangle you will be using!
Tail ribbons marked out
- Across the width of the paper (up/down in the
photo) mark dots at an interval of 12.5mm (1/2”). Repeat at the
other end and also in the middle if necessary, so lines can be drawn
the full length of the tail.
- Rule straight lines through the dots. See the
- There should be 16 tail ribbons marked out.
Line drawn across ribbons
Measure and draw a line across the ribbons, 2cm
(1”) from the short edge of the paper. At far left in the
Cut To Create Ribbons
Tail cut out, with ribbons
- With scissors, cut out the tail area.
- Then cut the ribbons – all the way up to
the line going across. See the photo.
Attach To Sail
Tail taped to rear side of sail
- Lay the sail down flat, with the edging tape
- Lay the un-cut end of the tail over the
sail's trailing edge, overlapping by about 0.5cm (1/4”). Tack in
place with 2 short bits of tape.
- Place a strip of sticky tape all the way
across, as indicated by the yellow rectangle in the photo.
Tail taped on front side of sail
- Flip the kite over and again apply sticky
tape all the way across. See the photo.
- That's it. You're done!
Nothing to it - attach line, catch breeze
After taking the kite to a flying field... Your
flying line can be tied right behind the Multi-Strand Double knot
near the ends of the bridle lines, wrapped around both bridle lines.
That's it, you're ready to fly.
Avoid flying in very windy weather. The
thread should be good to around 30kph but there are no guarantees
If kite and bridle have been made perfectly, any
bobbing to the left and right should be about the same in both
directions. Otherwise, you need to shorten one of the bridle lines
slightly, on the side to which the kite leans most. Just
gather in a few mm and fix it there by re-tying the bridle knot a bit
closer to the kite.
Hope you enjoyed learning how to make a Paper
Consider using my e-book Making Paper Kites to try any of the 5 all-paper designs in there. Hi-res, close-up photos help you through.
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