These instructions take you step-by-step through making a 120 cm (48 in.)
diameter parasail. This kite performs well in gentle to moderate
wind speeds. That's from 12 to 28 kph or from 8 to 18 mph. It pulls
hard for its size, so should not be flown by very small kids!
The MBK Parasail kite
is a very scaled-down version of the full-size parasail craft which
is commonly used to tow people high into the air over water. The
number of lines and vents has been reduced so the construction is
more practical at the smaller size.
As long as the wind
speed at least gusts into the gentle-to-moderate range, the kite will
climb under pressure and descend like a parachute during the lulls.
In a steady horizontal breeze the kite will hold between 0 and 45
degrees of line angle depending on the air's speed. Unique!
If any rising air
comes through, you might be able to watch the kite go much
Materials for this
The kite described here will do well with just
about any fairly light plastic sheet. For example, painter's
drop sheet or drop cloth plastic. That would be about four mil thickness
for those buying plastic sheet in the US. A light sail will help the
kite fly in lighter winds and give a little more stability. The large
number of lines ensures that the kite keeps its shape even when
under heavier air pressure.
Ordinary clear sticky tape in a dispenser will
work for this kite. The slightly wider variety (18 mm or 3/4 in.) is
good, but not absolutely necessary.
Ideally, the bridle should be made from quite
light line, say 20 pound strength and the kite flown on somewhat
heavier line, say 50 or 80 pound strength since it can pull quite
hard in moderate winds.
These instructions illustrate a parasail made with
50 pound bridle lines. This strength of line is readily available
from eBay and Amazon online stores.
Judge the horizontal and vertical directions by
eye. If you're careful, there's no need for a T-square since the sail
ends up symmetrical anyway.
The vents are opened-up gaps in the sail which are
carefully positioned to shoot air down the back of the parasail in
flight. This is how it can climb like a kite.