Swallow Kite Form
What is the basic form and shape of a swallow kite? I cannot find any efficient sites on the internet to answer this question for a project I have to do for school. Thank you so much. :)
You are not the first to ask about swallow kites, so for a start, check out my original answer regarding available resources. That was some time ago, so I have also searched with Bing - possibly better than using the Big G these days! Here is an interesting lead...
The traditional Chinese Swallow Kite is fairly easy to dissect, just looking at it.
See how the thin bamboo strips are formed into frames, with the fabric stretched over and attached later. Two straight strips (or perhaps they are thin bamboo rods) are attached to the main sail's trailing edge and fanned outwards to give that characteristic swallow-tail effect. That's the main feature which identifies this as a 'swallow' kite.
Note how the kite has 3 sections, corresponding to a bird's head, wings and tail.
I can't see exactly where the bridle lines are attached, on those examples. But the simplest option would be to take a piece of flying line about twice the length of the kite itself. One end could be tied to the middle of the leading edge of the wing - just behind the 'head' in other words. The other end would be tied to the middle of the trailing edge of the wing - where the tail attaches.
The flying line would then be attached to the bridle line with a sliding knot. With the kite flat on its back on the table or floor, this knot would be adjusted so it was directly over the 'head' area when both bridle lines are pulled straight. During some test flying, the knot could probably be shifted back a little at a time, towards the tail end of the kite. In this way the best flying position would be discovered, so the kite flys high and stable.
A home-made version would almost certainly need a long, light tail in order to fly stable! An authentic version made by a craftsman might not, since it would be very light and accurately made.
Hope this helps!