Two 2-Skewer Kites Have Maiden Flights
by Ian Hammond
(Kampong Chhnang, Cambodia)
Wet season is ending here in Cambodia, as the water recedes and the ground hardens on my flying area. I've returned from Australia with kite making supplies that I couldn't get here.
So to start, I built some 2 skewer kites to see how they fly and look before using my few precious pieces of dowel. The weather has been really odd the last few days with strong, easterly winds arriving 3 or 4 o'clock in the morning. And still there till lunch time. Then dropping to dead calm but today it became a gusty northerly in the afternoon that I thought would be flyable...
So, out with the new 2 skewer barndoor for its maiden flight. Initially it was reluctant to get airborne but soon enough it was away. With a bit of patience it gained some height. Considering it was gusty it didn't wander up and down or left and right a whole lot but was nodding its head left and right fairly fast and pulling fairly hard for a small kite. It felt having a good fish on the line. Maybe the tail isn't big enough or maybe it was flying toward the top of its wind range. Most of the time it was hanging around 10° to 15° but did get to maybe 30° at one stage.
The kite came down twice but easily relaunched so I decided if it was too strong then the 2 skewer box might do better. Typically though, when I got back out on the field the wind seemed to have lessened a bit with just the occasional gusty blow. Still give it a try anyway.
The box did fly but not for long or high going side to side fairly hard and into the ground a few times. Of The 2 lots of garbage bags I had bought one lot was thicker so seeing the box is for stronger wind it was what I used. Maybe its a bit too heavy for this size box kite or the wind conditions just not suited for it today.
All told I was happy to have a good fly. A few local kids came over for a look and then brought out their own kites so there were 3 kites up at any one time. It was a good hour or so of flying and then calm arrived so that was it for the day.