Rokkaku Kites

Pardon the mess, here and/or in other parts of this site!

All will be looking better by mid-November. T.P. (major site update in progress)

Reliable, High Flying Without Tails!

Rokkaku kites are dependable, steep fliers and tail-less. Here's a few we have seen over the years, with comments.

All Roks have one vertical spar and two horizontal spars, forming a six-sided figure when covered with sail material.

Traditionally, the horizontal spars are bowed, with a bow-string from tip to tip holding the curvature. Some modern Rokkakus though use stiffer materials like carbon fiber, where it's more practical to use a fitting to hold the spars at a dihedral angle.

A simple Rok, as they are known, isn't much harder to make than an Eddy Diamond. There's just that extra horizontal piece and 2 more edges to the sail shape. 

In theory, a single-point bridle could work, but most Roks have at least 4-point bridles to keep them steady in the air. Like our Dowel Rokkaku in the e-book cover over there.

However, I have experimented with 3-point bridles too. These work fine for smaller designs, with 2 attachment points on the upper horizontal spar and the remaining one near the middle of the vertical spar.

Making The MBK Dowel Rokkaku Kite is a handy e-book of printable step-by-step instructions. It's a PDF file download.

We've been to a few kite festivals over the years and taken plenty of photos. There's some Rokkaku pictures among them, so see below for a few large and elaborately decorated examples.





Rokkaku Kites Seen At Festivals

Here's 6 Rokkakus, each with a unique decorative design on the sail. Firstly, 3 Roks with face designs from Japan. Yep, the 'real deal'. We saw these being flown by men in traditional kite-flying garb. Next comes a modern design, another traditional but non-face design and finally an ad for a local kite shop!

Rokkaku Kites - decorated with stern Asian face in sepia color schemeFearsome traditional Rok

This stern Sumarai looks like he is about to lop your head off with a sharp sword... At least, that was my first impression. It might actually be a Japanese deity or something else entirely! Anyway, it's a traditionally decorated Japanese Rokkaku.


 

Rokkaku Kites - decorated with fearsome toothy characterAnd another

For reasons known only to the Japanese, this fearsome toothy character has powdered his nose completely white... Another traditional Rokkaku.


 

Rokkaku Kites - featuring Japanese character with white noseAnother Rok face (har har)

What is it with the white noses? Another striking face on a Rok kite.


 

Rokkaku Kites - great 3D geometric pattern.Geometric decoration

I really like this design. A simple, but highly effective 3D graphic in bold colors. Perfect!


 

Rokkaku Kites - distinctly Asian design on this one.Brushwork?

Distinctly Asian in form and color, the painting on this large Rok really stood out against the pale blue sky. Nice one!


 

Rokkaku Kites - seen at a festival, advertising a local kite shopRoks make good bill-boards

So it's advertising a local kite shop... What the heck, it's a very nice Rok!

The Kabuki Rokkaku Koi is an example of a Rok kite which can be bought on-line - from Amazon in this case.







Out In The Field

Rokkaku kite stories of my real-life flying experiences are worth checking out!

Illustrated with photos and videos, of course.

There's our Dowel Rokkaku in flight, in the video above...

That's about it for this page on Rokkakus. Hope you enjoyed the pics!

And if you want to make an MBK Dowel Rokkaku for yourself...

Making The MBK Dowel Rokkaku Kite is a handy e-book of printable step-by-step instructions. It's a PDF file download.



Need winders, reels, flying line?

We earn a small commission if you click the following link and buy something. The item does not cost you any more, since we are an "affiliate" of Amazon.

Click here to buy anything you need. Just use the Search box in there if you need different weights or lengths of line, for example.

P.S. Keep an eye out for books by kite author Glenn Davison, a prominent kite person in the USA.

What's New!

  1. Flight Report:
    Club Fly At Semaphore

    Nov 11, 18 10:45 PM

    It was back to the usual Semaphore Park location this month... True to the weather site prediction, a Gentle-strength breeze was coming off the ocean after mid-day. The direction was much more souther…

    Read More

Wind Speeds

Light Air
1-5 km/h
1-3 mph
1-3 knots
Beaufort 1

Light breeze
6–11 km/h
4–7 mph
4–6 knots
Beaufort 2

Gentle ...
12–19 km/h
8–12 mph
7–10 knots
Beaufort 3

Moderate ...
20–28 km/h
13–18 mph
11–16 knots
Beaufort 4

Fresh ...
29–38 km/h
19–24 mph
17–21 knots
Beaufort 5

Strong ...
39–49 km/h
25–31 mph
22–27 knots
Beaufort 6

High Wind
50-61 km/h
32-38 mph
28-33 knots
Beaufort 7

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Plenty of fun kite info, photos and videos - there's definitely too much here for only one visit! Feel free to leave your impressions of this site or just this page, below...

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