Roller Kite Posts

(Bamboo BBQ Skewer Spars)

It's an archive of sorts, although there are no dates and times. Kite flying is timeless, don't you agree?

I trust there is plenty in here to educate, inform and often entertain!

Try my Making Skewer Kites PDF, if you are interested in making these bamboo-sparred kites. Handy for working offline or from printouts.

These short flight reports once appeared in the site blog page - that's the one you enter via the 'what's new!' site navigation link.

Just scroll down and stop at any heading that appeals :-)

2-Skewer Roller Kite


The MBK 2-Skewer Roller
The MBK 2-Skewer Roller

Risky Roller Ride

Risky but fun! Just had a fascinating little flight out on the side lawn, with the 2-Skewer Roller kite. About enough space for two people to swing one cat each out there, simultaneously. If you get my drift.

It was right at sun-down, with large thick clouds lowering what was left of the late afternoon light.

After two or three attempts to pull the kite up above gutter height, on just a few meters of 20 pound Dacron, success. Now the kite was just hanging up there in the cool light breeze. Down low, the line direction had been everywhere. An occasional gentle fluttering could be heard from the trailing edges as the plastic and bamboo craft sat just above roof height, indicating a northerly wind direction.

As a distant rain squall approached from the west, the little Roller rose, sank and flitted about in the light gusts. A bird landed on the neighbor's roof and glanced at the kite. First with one eye, then with both - beak extended towards the kite.

I let out as much line as I dared. The peach tree, thorny rose bushes and a Hills Hoist cloths-line lay in wait, but were disappointed. An occasional tug on the line was required to urge the pale orange craft back up to high line angles.

And then small raindrops began to fall. As the shower slowly intensified I got busy winding line back on and keeping an eye on the kite's position at the same time. Soon the Roller was safely back on the lawn.

It seemed the breeze was no more than 12kph or so, although a weather site was indicating gusts to 31kph. Meanwhile, the clouds scudding overhead from the west were going even faster.

1-Skewer Roller Kite


The MBK 1-Skewer Roller
The MBK 1-Skewer Roller

Tiny Roller's Roller Coaster Ride

I think I have stuffed enough R's into that title to make it ... err roll off the tongue...

At first the little kite, just 29cm (11 1/2") from tip to tip, struggled a bit in the gusty wind-shadow of the trees. Despite a moderate sea breeze pumping in from the shore just a few kilometers away to the West.

It's amazing how well small kites on simple bridles can cope with rather brisk air - as long as enough tail is used! In fact, after the first flight or two on 20 meters (70 ft) or so of 20 pound Dacron line, it was necessary to dig around the kite bag for some extra tail plastic.

The 2-point bridle looked like it was adjusted fairly far forward, so I took it back a little. With an extra-long piece of thin black plastic being knotted on, the kite would still be in good trim.

On a much longer line now, the tiny orange Roller shot away to the right. However, with some extra height, it straightened and soared way up to a very satisfying line angle. The long, long tail straight as an arrow in the freshest gusts. During lulls, the kite would descend tail-first, with the thin black ribbon behind taking on all sorts of graceful shapes.

On more than 60 meters (200 feet) of light flying line, the 1-Skewer Roller was a delight to watch in the bright and cloudless sky. And that was in fast-moving air that would ground many of my larger kites!

I can't even remember the last time this particular kite flew, but it sure was a good choice today.

Don't forget to try my Making Skewer Kites PDF, if you are interested in making these kites for yourself. This design and all the other 1-Skewer and 2-Skewer designs are covered.

Handy for working offline or from printouts.

You might like these...

  • The Roller Kite - Some Background.

    Here's some Roller kite background info. It's popularity has been a bit of a roller coaster, but it's a great single liner that has given a lot of kiting joy over the years!

  • MBK Roller Kite Posts - Dowel

    MBK Roller kite posts archived from the site blog page. Features kites sparred with oak dowel.

  • MBK Red Roller Kite Posts

    MBK Red Roller kite posts archived from the site blog page. Features a kite very similar to the Dowel Roller, but with a soft Tyvek sail.

FREE E-Book!

I'm referring to Simplest Dowel Kites, my popular kite-making download. It's a printable PDF file. Make a diamond, delta or sled. Each kite is capable of flying hundreds of feet up for hours on end.

Could you do me just a small favor though?

Please sign up for my free monthly publication, "Tethered Flying". No other emails will be sent, and your details are safe with me. You need to be at least 16 years old. There's...

  • A huge "photo of the month" (via a link)
  • 3 "tips of the month" (one each for beginners, parents and the more experienced)
  • A "flight report of the month" (selected from my own flying logs)

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

What's New!

  1. Tiny light wind newspaper kites

    Jul 09, 20 08:25 PM

    As a child (around 6) one of my parent's friends with children near my age took us outside and taught us how to make the smallest of light-wind kites from

    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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