How To String A Malaysian Kite?
Hi Tim, hows it all going now, good I hope. I wonder...
(A) Can you get electrocuted flying a kite if it's hit by lightning? I use nylon string.
(B) Any idea how to string a Malaysian kite? See URL below:
A string comes off each wing at the shoulder/neck area, would love to know how to tie them to a bridle ring correctly, then another string comes up from the tail area, I guess I just tie that on normally?
And (C) what angle should all these strings be at as they join up to the bridle ring? Or is there any set angle?
Things are going OK here, apart from heavy rain showers and strong wind as Winter gets closer! To answer your questions....
(A) As far as I know, any type of kite string that gets wet is a danger to the kite flier, assuming there is electrical activity (or the potential for it) in the area. There's a TV show in the USA (also shown here in Australia) called Myth Busters, one episode of which demonstrated what happens! It's dangerous alright. Water is not a great conductor, but the immense power of a lightning strike will still send plenty of current down the line!
(B) and (C) Nice looking Malaysian kite - should fly well if the bridle is adjusted properly. Here's my tips, which just involve using knots...
Seeing that the kite comes with 3 separate bridle strings, the following quick-n-dirty approach could well prove satisfactory, so try it first.
- Draw all 3 strings together in one hand, with the kite laying on its back on the floor or table top.
- Position your hand so all 3 lines are straight, and come together at a spot directly over the white area on the bird's neck. To be more precise, over the lower edge of the white area, and exactly over the center-line of the kite of course.
- Taking care not to let any lengths change, tie the free ends of the 3 strings together using a Multi-Strand Simple Knot.
This process should allow the bird kite to fly. Attach your flying line just behind the big bridle knot, using a Lark's Head Knot
Take the kite out in a light breeze and see what happens.
If the kite consistently flies lower than you expect, you might have to untie the bridle lines and re-tie, this time shifting the knot just a few mm towards the tail end.
If the kite struggles to climb at all, even in moderate winds, you might have to re-tie the bridle knot a few mm further towards the nose (or beak in this case!)
As for looping left or right - this simple bridle approach really doesn't suit making lots of fine adjustments. So you may have to resort to attaching a little piece of plastic or tape off of one wingtip to drag in the air and correct a turning tendency.
When the adjustments result in a high and straight flying kite, it feels pretty satisfying!