By Leslie Hunt
FRAME OF ENGLISH KITE
The English Kite is a modification of the Two-Stick Kite.
It is usually made
like the Two-Stick Kite with an arched top made of a strip of rattan or bamboo.
A little care will enable one to dispense with the cross stick and to use a
strip from an orange crate for the arch. Prepare the spine in the manner
described for the Two Stick Kite, bringing the length to 26 inches.
Slit the bottom end half
an inch or notch deeply. The top end need not be slit. Prepare another stick
from light-colored wood, making it 3/8 by 26 inches. Slit the ends, but
this time the slit is to run parallel to the edges.
On a sheet of paper about 1 by 2 feet, crease a line the long way about 4
inches from the bottom. Bring the two ends of this crease together and form a
new crease in the middle of the first and at right angles to it. Unfold the
paper and fasten it to a board or wall where you may drive nails.
From a center, 4 inches below the intersection of the creases, strike an arc
of a circle having a radius of 10 1/2 inches, as large as the paper will permit.
Drive nails part way in about 2 inches apart, beginning at the top of the arch
and following the curved line closely. This is the pattern or template for
bending the arch stick. It will be well to keep it, as you may have occasion to
use it for other kites. Tie the middle of a 3-foot string to the top nail.
See that the arch stick is of uniform thickness and mark its center. When
everything is ready, pour hot water on the stick, pouring slowly back and forth
from end to end until the stick seems quite soft. Tie the center of the stick to
the top nail, and lash it, flat side to the nails. Proceed carefully. If the
stick seems too stiff, tuck a cloth around it and pour on hot water. When the
stick is shaped, tie it in place.
The stick may be bent on the outside or on the inside of the arch. If the
stick is of the thickness mentioned, there will be but little difference in the
width of the kite; but I find it a little easier to bend the stick on the
outside of the arch.
Remove the top nail and lay the spine along the short crease of the pattern
allowing the top to lap over the arch stick half an inch. Make sure that the
slit in the other end is properly placed, then glue and tie as shown in Figure
Start wrapping the ends as shown in Figure 2.
Tie the middle of a
2-foot string around the spine just over the intersection of the creases and run
the strings through the slits of the arch so as to form a cross string instead
of across stick. Adjust the frame by the eye and by measuring.
Fasten the cross strings, letting the ends hang free. Connect the ends of
the arch and the bottom of the spine with a framing string.
It will be well to fasten the framing string above the cross strings. Finish
wrapping the ends (Figure 3) still leaving the ends of the cross strings
free. Let the frame dry before removing from the pattern. Paper the
kite, spine next to the paper, pasting the paper to the arch stick and also
lapping it a little.
ENGLISH KITE COMPLETE WITH PLAIN BRIDLE
Make two tassels of tissue paper about 4 inches in length and suspend them
about half their length by means of the ends of the cross string. Clip off
all loose ends and let the kite dry. Attach the bridle as directed for the
two-stick kite only fix the towing point about 5
inches from the top.
EDGE VIEW OF ENGLISH KITE
For a 26-inch kite, the vertical loop should be 28 1/2 inches when
finished. Complete the kite with a tail made of 18 feet of 1 1/2 inch
paper festooning, or with a tail made of scraps of light fluffy paper. A kite
made according to the above specifications rated .54 ounce per square foot,
inclusive of tassels, but exclusive of tail. It was not as rigid as the
two-stick kite, but it was a very satisfactory flier and a great favorite with
older people who had likely flown kites of this kind when they were young.
25 Kites That Fly