Picture of How to Make a Kite: The Tabloid Sled.
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Knock up a decent kite in less time than it took to clear my workbench.
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Step 1: Materials and Tools

Picture of Materials and Tools
@ A newspaper,
@ Sticky tape,
@ Light string,
@ Scissors
@ Long straight edge.

Step 2: Making the sail

Picture of Making the sail
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Carefully fold one sheet of your newspaper in half.

Mark points approximately half-way along the top and bottom edges, and about one thrird of the way down the side.

Join the points. (The dotted line is not essential - it is just to show where the longerons are going to be later.)

Cut along the lines and discard the triangular pieces.

Step 3: Longerons

Picture of Longerons
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Longerons are the spars of any kite that go front-to-back.

Take another double page of your newspaper. Roll it up tight from one vertical edge and tape together.

Make another roll of paper.

Decide which side of your sail will be facing you in flight, and place that side up. Tape one longeron on each side of the sail, where the dotted lines were in the previous step.

Notice that the end of the pice of tape folds over the edge of the sail and is stuck behind - a simple trick, but it makes the kite a lot stronger.

Step 4: The Bridle

Picture of The Bridle
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Cut a piece of string about four times as long as the kite is wide (corner to corner).

Turn the kite longerons-down, and attach the string from corner to corner, using tape at each corner.

Tie the ends of the bridle together to make a loop. A reef knot (I think US readers may call it a square knot) is fine for this. The bulk of the loop should be in front of the kite.

Note that I have attached the string waaaay off-centre. This prevents the knot from obstructing the flying line when we attach it later.

Step 5: The Tail

Picture of The Tail
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Fold another sheet of the newspaper in half, three times. This makes eight layers.

Cut along the creases to make eight strips of paper, about two inches wide.

Tape four strips together, end-to-end. That's one tail.

Tape the other four together. That's a second tail.

Tape one tail to each lower corner of the sail.

Your kite is basically complete.
timinak3 months ago

I made this kite about a year ago, with some personal modifications to use glue instead of tape.

The tails, I spiral cut out of two full broadsheets of newspaper laid over top of each other so they'd be even.

Using cotton line, I ended up with a kite that I wouldn't feel too badly about if it got away from me and crashed into the bay.

I flew it in a fresh breeze though and it never did get away from me. Amazing how strong dry newspaper can be. Great, steady flyer. In fact, the steadiest sled I've ever made. Going to use it in a kite making class in a couple months if that's alright.

Kiteman (author)  timinak3 months ago

Of course it's all right!

Post some pictures of your class' kites flying when you're done.

JohnJY5 years ago
You look quite different then what I had expected. Nice kite anyway, but I'm interested in war kites, and overly fancy, big kites.
Grey_Wolfe5 years ago
So, random question that I'm sure I've seen answered before.

What kind of science do you teach? lol

Another nice recycling job. Good kite. :)
Kiteman (author)  Grey_Wolfe5 years ago
At the moment, I teach all branches - I will probably end up specialising more in the next year or so, though.

Whoa, never thought I'd see a kite made out of newspaper fly. That's really cool man, awesome job!
Kiteman (author)  T3h_Muffinator8 years ago
Thankyou, my small-cake-based friend, but most flat light materials will nake a kite, as long as you choose a design that allows for their strengths or weaknesses. I once saw a kite made of an old cotton shirt, and I've made kites from sweet-wrappers and brush-bristles. I feel a theme coming on.
I've made a kite from a shirt before, but Brush-Bristles?! GOGOGO!
Welllllllllllll, he finally posted it! XD

Yes that is a shameless bump

For once I was not stalking...I just was revisiting old favorites! All concidence, I swear...
When I was in college the aerospace engineering department sponsored a kite flying contest. The winning kite was made by a couple of Chinese students. Five minutes before the contest started they made their kite out of napkins and straws from the cafeteria.
Haha! Awesome! -Shows that ingenuity always prevails!
The common what? :D
In Britain people can't go where they like but there are "commons", publicly available places.
Can't go where they like? How so?
Not sure, only been to britain a few times. It's quite some way from Sweden. I think it has to do with most of their land beeing privatly owned and landowners beeing very territorial about it. Something like that anyway. I was quite shocked when my mate told me we couldn't climb a fence because the farmer would shoot at us.
Ah, yes. It's the same in certain areas of the States.
Kiteman (author)  Lithium Rain6 years ago
In days of yore, almost the whole country was open access. The only bits you were banned from were forests - not necessarily heavily wooded, they were royal hunting grounds.

Later, there were the acts of enclosure. Rich folk put fences around huge lumps of land and said "Mine, get off, poor people!". The bits left over were common land - owned by nobody in particular, used by anybody.

The term is also used in some of the older universities - the commons is an indoor area where anybody (rather than just professors etc) is allowed to hang around and socialise.
omnibot Kiteman6 years ago
Eeewww! That's like some twisted form of apartheid. Mind you, we've probably got somethings similar in our history. Just goes to prove things were'nt always better before.
Kiteman (author)  omnibot6 years ago
It's a large part of what makes us British - the origins of the class system.
So that's what the commons are!
josh921767 years ago
Ah, so thats what you look like:-)
Kiteman (author)  josh921767 years ago