It is appropriate that Mr Smiley welcomes everyone to the site, he really marked the point where i got totally sucked in to kites...

Since it was pretty obvious that I had no idea what I was doing, Nannette bought me a book. "The Magnificent Book of Kites" by Maxwell Eden. We had just been to our 1st festival (Motts in Milwaukee) and seen our 1st rok battle, so i decided to try a rokkaku and a BIG one! Wow, a 7 foot kite (seemed huge then). I learned a lot making this kite. The amazing thing is that despite my incompetence and improper materials, He's still flying over five years later!

Made of fabric store ripstop with soft dacron reinforcements and ribbon pockets (dacron webbing???) , the sail stretched like crazy. Gary Engvall took one look at the kite and said "bedsheets fly best!" I have reframed the kite in fiberglass (originally wood, reframed before i was willing to spend graphite $'s on rods!) and moved the spar ties in (closer to the center to get the stretch between the 2 cross spars rather than out at the points where it made the kite unstable), but for the rest the kite is still the same. It is my workhorse lifter, and one of the first kites out of my bag. Mr Smiley (named after the SKA song by Mustard Plug) won the only rok battle he was ever in!



see more homemade kites

return to Arnold's Homepage