Making a Sled Kite


Kids Crafts with Maker Dad


Lesson Info

Making a Sled Kite

The third and final project is the sled kite. This is something that I've flown kites a lot and I found a cool one that was on instructive bols actually. And I thought that this would be a fun one to try out so I built it at home. It turns out to be a cool kite easy to make and also easy to scale so that you could make a small one or you can make it bigger and bigger and bigger. What you need is it's pretty simple is just one of these trash bags. This is a thirteen gallon plastic trash bag and it's got it's not necessary but this could come in handy. It's got this red ribbon inside this usedto tighten the bag like a drawstring and that could end to be becoming a tale for the kite so that's something that you can experiment with the garbage in the trash bag kite you all made it a practice this exactly the trash bag I also thing you need, you cannot used owls the's air eighth inch diameter dell's and you can also use so distraught if you want. What we're going to use is eighteen inch lon...

g sections of these of these dowels and you need two of them or you could do three sometimes, but for this one we'll just use to this seems to be enough I've made a template here to help us cut out the shape of the kite that's what it's going to look like? Well, this is half of it this is half because the garbage bag what we'll do I'll show you we'll cut it along the fold and so on to make this template I thought what would be a great way for for us to quickly do the template is that all this go around for for you guys and cut out the shape of the template we have? We have the template available at the web site so that you can do it but here in studio let's just trace this and then you can quickly cut it out in your garbage bags so what I'm going to do is I'm going to go over here tio david and lux's table and here you have this kind of foam core paper I'm going tio this quickly draw that shape out for you using a sharpie do you guys fly kites a lot in san francisco? We love to do it at the beach of sometimes and we went to the big berkeley kite festival. I think two weekends ago anyone else go skies just filled with amazing kites? That sounds great fun so why don't you guys use your tools here scissors and be carefully again with his knife just cut out that template shape I'll do it over here how about you guys you guys kite aficionados we're into sailboats tio a lot really kind of like kind of like kites pick up the winds really are that's great you'll be telling this thing behind ourselves if the scissors work go ahead and try the scissors because that seems easier but uh if not the news tonight and also here's one other thing this triangle in the center is optional you don't have to have that it it seems to help if the wind is a little bit stronger oh yeah but uh you might it's up to you do the tail or don't do the tail and we'll see what happens ok so it looks like you guys are going to share this kite as this was a team okay wait get this and again like I said that this triangle in the centre way cut it out when we get both exactly exactly right so go ahead and cut that template out and uh it might help for me to show you kind of what what the kites going toe look like when you finish so you have an idea what the finished project looks like so here if you want to just direct your attention up here for a second you guys this is what it looks like and you can see I have those two sticks I didn't use bamboo in this case these air a couple of slaps from some some blinds the slats fell off winds me my office it is kind of like a happy face and then we'll go over the details about the taping on and things like that but for now go ahead and cut out that template with your craft knife again taking care not to cut yourself and once you've got that done let me know and and jean there's uh I want to show you what we do once you're done what we're gonna do is we're gonna lay the template along the bottom edge of the trash bag because there's a fold there and on the sides there's this ridge thing you would make it lead so so what I'm going to dio a xjs pointed out this is a seam here this like a heat sealed seem for the kite and we want to kind of avoid that one so move the kite over to the edge a little bit but have the have this half of the kite up against the fold of the bag and then with your sharpie just trace the outline just like you did with the template that you you made so jane go ahead and and trace along there okay like I accidentally on course and it might be good that one person hold down the template while the other person traces did the blade just stick into the into the crap favor that's funny and gene is probably better like pull up a poll and pushed the pen like people smooth or maybe not that's fine and don't worry about doing perfectly straight lines when you when you're in the cutting process you can probably do a better job that this is not the final kind of just drag you just want to do the general outline ok on a single sheetal to shoot the sheep before didn't oh it's it's ah plus the garbage bag and so you're pushing the gets the bottom edge you have a fold there already but it is it is open up it's not folded in half no it's not folded in half is just the just the regular bag and you haven't done in the bag has not been not nothing's been done to it yet so so let me show you this um not on the center but a little bit I mean it could be anywhere could be in the center but I have it away from the little edge because the edge has been like heat pressed together that seem so you just want to avoid that seem and so you can see that thea other part of the bag it's been folded the I mean the bank this has a fold on the bottom so now we're going to take and I think let's do the scissors actually that's uh a little easier and then just cut along the red lines with the scissors cut with scissors goes very easily and smoothly and it probably helps to have someone hold up and also just let's make sure janus faced nice and like you're not going to be cutting only one side yeah and you just cut it out with scissors well, you actually don't even need to cut you just slide scissors along yeah like that like cesium and just cut that straight line there they said in the back of commits the edge on then we'll just cut up that triangle peace mill perfect it doesn't have to be perfect the's kites are pretty forgiving also the cool thing about this kite I took it down to the beach in santa monica on saturday and there wasn't very much wind at all but it had no problem getting up in the air first of all framed a kite with a frame works better and uh and slight winds a kite without a frame requires a little more wind so that's that frame really helps open up the kite ok don't want it. Okay, okay. That's okay? We'll just uh it's just you hear that line a little bit right there way have ah pretty good shape we're just gonna add a little bit that uh we we cut a little bit too far along that trying on we don't want it to rip so um we're going to add a little bit of tape team will be no problem just put some tape right there, ok? And if you find anything that is like two sharp oven edge, it is a good idea to add a little bit of tape because it's a stress point and the tape doesn't weigh much and it won't it won't affect the aerodynamics of it you're shooting for here but it didn't have to cut the scene you cut that seem just justin tio get past the scene so that you end up with this like so no but wait, that looks great that looks really good. Ok, cool. So now we have these towels and we want to have a we want to put these devils down so they go from the top of the kite down to the bottom and they'll hit thea they'll hit the corner of the triangle and so take a little of penn and mark that way need to discuss it and it might be enough to just cut it with scissors you want to try? Okay if I cannot do it what's the finger I got it. I think james trying it with scissors here see a started doing it it was probably pretty darn good if you get to a certain point you can just snap it what I want it's not okay, very good and if you have a little bit of sandpaper and you want to clean it up you can hear some sandpaper jane it's probably about eighteen inches long being while you're sending that I worked on the other end thiss needs is a little bit of sniffing thie instructor bols version of this actually used soda straws but I thought uh be good to have a little more but it might be getting its a little heavier it is so there's a trade off and it might be worth trying to make one with soda straw and one with dowels and see what the difference is okay, so know that we have our sticks laid down that looks really good go ahead and and prepare force four strips of duct tape to attach to the kite and these convey be about an inch long you want me to rip it? I'm going to just cut him like this and make it easier I know it isn't funny at all that you apply them hold on to that so cut like four strips about this big each and this is how you attach the uh sticks you attach them at the top and the bottom and also you can't attach him to the middle too so we'll go ahead I have had some to the middle just haven't really structurally stain right at the top or I'll show you just like that, okay it's not an exact science here these things kind scene that was pretty forgiving I'm going to add a couple more uh anchor points right above the triangle one right here we'll put another one right here okay, well, I'll show you against them that we actually now have six anchor points can you see that? Hear how we have that? What if we just made one really long and point all the way across? You could do that but I don't think you need tio so why use the extra tape if you don't need tio the next thing we want to do is we're going to put we're going to put holes on the edges of the kite here where I'm pinching that's where holes go but first we want to put some duct tape as that's kind of strain relief so once again cut a couple of strips that are about an inch long each and I'm just using one peace here and so what I'm going to do is that I'll fold this in and I'll show you what I did do you see this is uh on the sides here pieces of duct tape that have been folded in half? You see how I did that so altogether? There are eight pieces of tape on this, so then the whole the whole punch just punch it somewhere in the middle of the tape that let those anchors and now I'll hold this up against you could see you have holes through on the size of the kind like that I noticed that this stick I'm going to just have a little bit of duct tape because that sticks kind of protruding a little bit. There we go. Okay, so the next thing is to take about three feet of the fishing line this much or so clip it wants to cut that and tie one end of the string through one of your polls. You can make a nice and tighten in the other one threw the other hole tie one end of your three feet of fishing line to one hole on the other line with the other hole three jane it's good to do it t double the knot. Okay, and then in the middle of this line we're going to tie it. Not so that we have a loop sticking out and that will be your anchor point like that. But what you have now is a kite that looks like this were actually done with the kite with the basic kite. What you would do then is just get your stuff, your kite string on a lot of times you can get when you buy kite string they kindly gave you one of these pieces of fishing tackle that you could just run through the loop of your kite and then you could just take this outside and fly it and it might help I've noticed to have someone hold the kite open for for you so it starts out open yeah, like fifteen and then you both run together and then jane would let go once it catches the wind and the kite will go up this is ah, low wind kind. It works really well in a slight breeze, but what about a tale? A tale would be a cruel eighty and I was thinking this would be good material for tail jane, why don't you? You see that the taste concealed here and here? So why don't you, uh, cut that part out off like a little rectangle? That's? Good. Yeah, that's enough because I read it and then over there through the same thing, just cut it, but it's sealed great and then pull those out way I'll pull them out of the middle just like I'm taking the trash bag. Whoops. I'm so strong that I ripped it great. I know you're fine. Okay, so then with this we can we can use this is a tale material. Well, that's cool. Yeah, they call the pick of matches that we'll be using a peak of a pic of a can we use high for this or that work for them if you were doing some kind aerial photography you could use the peak of a you'd probably need a bigger kite that had more lift but pick a vase are used commonly with kite aerial photography aficionados okay and so yeah they're perfect so what I what I was thinking is so you have these tales you could just get it a little more of this wonderful duct tape that's been our good friend all day long today served so many useful purposes and just tape a little bit of the attach it to the stick way have two of them so one on either side well that's a nice skirt change and uh here we go look at this this is pretty cool a garbage bag kite and I think this thing does fairness you couldn't do it out in the rain fly it in the rain I'm so take these home with you and give it a try I'd love to see if you could if you guys have success take a picture and folks in the in the web audience try this out I'd love to see photos I'd love to hear about your experiences I would also love it if you tried it with a large bigas you could find heavy duty garbage bag and maybe you slightly thicker dallas and make one that is twice as big with linear dimensions so instead of being eighteen inches tall would be thirty six inches tall that means that the surface area of the kite would be twice as much and so would have a lot of lip. I mean, it would this service every b four times as much so would have a ton of lift. That would be great to see how that works out for you. Have we heard anything from from online? Yes. And people are following along there. I think they really have a good time. I think they're waiting to get outside and northeast was good down. How strong is this garbage bag material? I mean, it's it's, actually pretty good is pretty robust. You just have to be careful about the stress points of it tearing. And also it looks like I have a little loose duct tape here, but as long as you have those nice anchor points on there, you should be. You should be good to go. Yeah. Now, our nickname jane is saying they like your idea of the happy face like that. You should draw some eyes and nose on it with sharpie. Cool idea. Why don't you do that? Jane jane chasing her own fashion closet is excellent. Ok, so, so, poncho girl, why don't you draw a face on that, okay, and, uh and I'm going to take a look at seeing how everybody's doing over here you guys were able to get that whole thing out it's one piece uh just sort of kind of a little peace still right here how come you didn't punch that with the whole we did but then we covered because it was like we tied it so tight that I was afraid do you think that's gonna mess? No, not at all. So it's just security yeah. What do you think we could use some of this very good strength. Yeah that's what the kite strings for definitely he wants to use that as a great strength. Yeah, I would use that as the kite. Strangest this I think it's fine is lightweight and strong. How are you guys doing? Don't tape madness. Who hope that tastes great weight that up there dot heard you do it a little more down there really might even try putting it in the center. I mean, you had up to you it's up to you that's great. You guys have customize it. Let me, uh, let me show what these guys have done here that's really cool. So I showed this to the skies to my wife carla and she said it's uh, such a bland color that white isn't there some other color you can use, so maybe you can find some other kind of colored plastic to do it with other colors. I don't know if they make garbage cans in the colors other than black, gray and white. But if you can find something, be great, I imagine you can get, oh, yeah, yeah, yeah, chance you want you could. Absolutely. If you have patients, go crazy with a sharpie and do it.

Class Description

Make your weekends more awesome with activities you and your kids can get their hands on. Join Make Magazine editor-in-chief Mark Frauenfelder — and his daughter Jane — for a class on cool, simple projects you can do with your kids.

In Kids Crafts with Maker Dad, you’ll get the blueprints you need to complete projects with the whole family. You’ll learn how to whip up a mixture that makes enormous bubbles, and how to get started with polymer clay — a medium you can use to create custom toys, shapes, and figurines. You’ll engage in a little trial and error learning by creating your own simple board and dice games. You’ll also learn the more advanced magic of constructing a Drawbot – a simple robot that can make abstract art all by itself.

This course will have even your most reluctant kid excited to get their hands dirty and experimenting, making, and creating, together.