How To Make An Octopus Kite

Step-by-Step - Page 2 of 5

The MBK Octopus


Making Middle Ribs

Firstly a template is measured up in 2 steps. For this, use any smooth light-colored surface which you don't mind marking with a pen or pencil. For example, copier paper.

The Octopus kite - how to mark dots on middle rib template.How to mark dots on middle rib template
  • For each step, start from the orange dot and then mark the red dots by following the measurements and arrows.


Marking Middle Rib Template

It's best to avoid using anything stretchy for this, like very thin plastic! The photos below show my copier paper template. The sheets are joined by sticky tape on the other side.

The Octopus kite - middle rib template: dots, +outline, +vents.Middle rib template: dots, +outline, +vents
  • The first photo shows the marked dots of the template.
  • The second photo shows the rib outline drawn in. For accuracy, it's best to use a fairly thin tipped marker for this. In fact, I used a ball-point pen on the paper.
  • The third photo shows the guide lines drawn in, for taping and cutting the square vent holes.


Creating A Middle Rib

The first image below has the black dots enhanced, so you can see them easier...

The Octopus kite - first middle rib -  dots marked, lines drawn, taped and cut.First middle rib - dots marked, lines drawn, taped and cut
  • Place some rib plastic over the template.
  • Make dots at all the corners showing through, as in the first photo.
  • Draw lines between the dots, exactly as shown in the second photo.
  • Apply strips of sticky tape where indicated by the yellow rectangles in the third photo.
  • Cut around the rib shape with scissors as in the fourth photo. Also cut out the two square vents, along the black lines.


Completing Middle Ribs

You have just made one middle rib. Now make two more in exactly the same way...

The Octopus kite - all 3 middle ribs.All 3 middle ribs

 


Creating A-Lines Attachment Points

This kite uses loops of 20 pound flying line as attachment points for all the bridle lines. Including the A-lines which are the 3 attached to the lower rim of the air intake...


The Octopus kite - starting to make a bridle line attachment point.Starting to make a bridle line attachment point
  • Get some 20 pound line, your scissors, sticky tape and one middle rib.
  • Cut a piece of the line to a length of 25cm (9 3/4”) and stick it down as indicated by the yellow rectangle in the photo. 1cm (3/8”) of tape and line should overhang the plastic on the right. Note how the line goes across the corner of the rib edge on the left.



Here are the remaining steps for making a bridle attachment point on a middle rib...

The Octopus kite - completing a bridle attachment point.Completing a bridle attachment point
  • Top Photo – Fold the sticky tape around to the other side of the plastic, sticking the overhanging bit of line with it.
  • Middle Photo – Flip the rib over and stick down the remaining line, leaving the same amount overhanging. Notice that a little loop of line has been left off one edge of the rib. A bridle line will attach here later.
  • Bottom Photo – On the left, fold around and stick the overhanging tape and line to the other side of the plastic.

You have now completed a bridle attachment point on a middle rib. Now do the other 2 middle ribs in exactly the same way...

The Octopus kite - the 3 middle ribs with bridle attachment points added.The 3 middle ribs with bridle attachment points added

 


Making Side Ribs

 As was done for the middle ribs, a template is measured up in 2 steps...

Measuring Rib Template Dots

The Octopus kite - how to mark dots on side rib template.How to mark dots on side rib template
  • For each step, start from the orange dot and then mark the red dots by following the measurements and arrows.


Marking Side Rib Template

 The photos below show my side rib template, made with just 2 sheets of copier paper...

The Octopus kite - side rib template: dots, +outline, +vent.Side rib template: dots, +outline, +vent
  • The first photo shows the marked dots of the template.
  • The second photo shows the rib outline drawn in.
  • The third photo shows the guide lines drawn in, for taping and cutting the rectangular vent hole.


Creating A Side Rib

The side ribs are done similarly to the middle ribs....

The Octopus kite - first side rib -  dots marked, lines drawn, taped and cut.First side rib - dots marked, lines drawn, taped and cut
  • Place some rib plastic over the template. This can be a little heavier than any other plastic you are using for this kite. It should at least not be any lighter than the upper surface plastic.
  • Make dots at all the corners showing through, as in the first photo.
  • Draw lines between the dots, exactly as shown in the second photo.
  • Apply a strip of sticky tape where indicated by the yellow rectangle in the third photo.
  • Cut around the rib shape with scissors as in the fourth photo. Also cut out the rectangular vent, along the black lines.


Completing Side Ribs

You have just made one side rib. Now make one more in exactly the same way...

The Octopus kite - both side ribs.Both side ribs

 


Creating More Attachment Points

The procedure for making an attachment point using 20 pound line and sticky tape has already been described. The photos show the line being stuck to the upper end of a side rib. Notice how it goes straight across now, instead of at a slight angle..


The Octopus kite - creating a bridle line attachment point on a side rib.Creating a bridle line attachment point on a side rib
  • Top photo – Cut a piece of 20 pound line to a length of 21cm (8 1/4”) this time. Stick it down as shown, with 1cm (3/8”) overhanging the plastic on the right as in the photo. The longest edge of the rib is on the left.
  • You've done this process before, so just follow the remaining photos up there in order.

Attachment point complete? Now move down to the lower edge of the vent hole and do the same again.

And do both attachment points on the second side rib also...

The Octopus kite - both side ribs with all 4 attachment points added.Both side ribs with all 4 attachment points added

 



Consider using my e-book Making Soft Kites to try any of the 5 spar-less designs in there. Hi-res, close-up photos help you through.


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