Simple to construct, easy to fly, the diamond kite — two sticks crossed and sure collectively, lined by a diamond-shaped piece of paper — is essentially the most acknowledged kite form within the Western world. A woodcut picture from the 1600s is the oldest recognized reference to the diamond kite. And all it requires is a few sticks, some newspaper and string.
Now, are you prepared for an replace? This Twenty first-century diamond kite is made completely from newspaper, even the sticks.
Sharpen the crease down the center of a double-page sheet of newspaper after which open it. Along with your pencil, make a dot a few finger-width from the highest of the web page.
Measure 4 and three-quarter inches straight down from the dot and mark the spot. From that spot, measure 9 and a half inches out to every facet, once more marking the spots. Going again to the center dot, measure 14 and 1 / 4 inches down from it and mark the spot.
Use a ruler to attract straight traces between the dots to create a diamond define. Lay tape over the traces, centering the perimeters of the tape over the traces.
Reduce out the diamond form with scissors. It will depart half the width of the tape throughout the perimeters of the newspaper diamond. The tape produces a neat edge and helps keep away from tearing whereas in flight.
Now make the spars (a flowery identify for the sticks!)
Lay down the diamond-shaped sail over one other sheet of newspaper and make a reproduction sail form. No have to tape the perimeters as you’ll make this diamond right into a spar.
Roll the newspaper across the skewer from one facet to the opposite throughout the width of the kite. After a couple of turns, take away the skewer and proceed rolling as tightly as doable. Upon getting completed rolling, safe the free facet level to the roll with a one-inch piece of tape, so the paper can’t unravel. This might be your vertical spar on the kite.
On a brand new double-page sheet of newspaper mark out a sq., 13⅜ inches by 13⅜ inches, utilizing a pen and ruler. Reduce out the sq. and roll the newspaper diagonally from nook to nook across the skewer as you probably did in Step 6. The ensuing spar must be about 19 inches lengthy and might be your horizontal spar on the kite. Add tape to safe.
Utilizing one other sheet of newspaper, rule traces parallel horizontally throughout it one-and-a-quarter inches aside. Place tape alongside the complete size of the traces. This helps strengthen the tail when the kite is in flight.
Reduce alongside the traces with scissors and be a part of the ensuing strips end-to-end with tape on either side (you must have at the very least 16 ft of tail strip).
Assemble the kite
One of many ends of the vertical spar might be heavier. In case you put the center of the spar throughout an outstretched finger, you possibly can really feel it simply. Place the heavy finish excessive level of the sail and the opposite finish over the underside level of the sail. Safe the ends to the sail with quick strips of tape.
Place the horizontal spar throughout the sail so one finish aligns with a facet level of the sail. Safe the spar tip to the purpose with a brief strip of tape. Now convey the opposite finish down and align it with the opposite facet of the sail. Safe with tape as earlier than.
Watch out to not crush the spars the place they cross.
Place two four-inch strips of tape vertically throughout the horizontal spar half an inch on both facet of the vertical spar. Tape to the sail, being cautious to not crush the tubes.
Take every finish of the lengthy tail ribbon and tape to both facet of the spar on the backside of the sail. Flip the kite over and add extra tape to make a extremely safe connection. The tail could be left as a loop, or snipped in half on the backside to develop into two separate tails.
Connect the free finish of a roll of polyester stitching thread to a winder (you may make one out of folded up newspaper if you need) with a brief strip of sticky tape. Then wind on at the very least 100 turns of thread. Snip the thread, prepared to connect that finish to the kite.
Utilizing the skewer, punch a small gap by the sail on both sides of the vertical spar, just under the horizontal spar (get as near it as doable). Poke the tip of the thread by the sail, across the vertical spar and again by the opposite gap within the sail. Tie off utilizing two or three half-hitch knots. Add a sq. of tape over the thread on the vertical spar to cease the thread shifting.
Now to fly!
Simply to double-check, the thread comes out from one facet of the kite whereas the spars are hooked up to the opposite facet. All OK? If not, swap it round proper now. To place it one other means, the spars must be on the again of the flying kite, and the thread must be on the entrance.
This kite doesn’t want quite a lot of wind to fly efficiently. In case you can see leaves and small twigs shifting about within the timber, that’s about proper. In case you drop some dry leaves or dust and may’t run or jog to maintain up with it because it blows downwind, it’s too sturdy. Await lighter wind.
This kite is robust sufficient to fly nicely in winds as much as 16 miles per hour however being solely paper, bending the spars is a threat. At the very least you may make new ones in only some minutes, if some kite surgical procedure is required.
Tim Parish runs My Greatest Kite, a web site dedicated to informing and serving to kite-flyers since 2007, and makes a speciality of creating kites from simply obtained supplies.