the tao of jaklumen

the path of the sage must become the path of the hero

Flight time May 20, 2010

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It's been a while but there's SO much still to learn!

I got started rather late in the evening, and the winds became a little too strong for most stunt tricks (ideal speed is about 6-8 MPH or so) so I wound up flying the Snapshot 1.2 parafoil kite again, and simply practiced loop spirals with it.

Here's a few pictures of that kite again, just to refresh your memory:

SwerveSnapshot 1

Now, as I said, I took some Dacron lines on D-winders that I had left over from some single line kites, and transferred them to some color-coded (blue and red) grip handle winders.  Now, what I found was they weren't of equal length, and I ran out of line on the blue before I ran out on the red.  When you're flying kites with more than one line, you want them to be of equal lengths.  Much of the time, sport kites are flown with set lengths and fingertip/wrist handles like this:


but I rather like some granular control.  I just have to be mindful that my lines are of about equal length.

Practicing the spiral loops was simply a matter of holding a combination turn: pull back on one handle, and push forward with the other.  The direction depended on which handle was "pulled" and which handle was "pushed".  Now, the thing about parafoils and other frameless kites is they need to catch the wind pretty directly to stay open and aloft.  So I did most of my spiral loops near the "power zone".

This is probably one of the best graphic designs I have seen on the Web to describe the wind window.  (More details, including reference citations, are in the separate link to this picture.)  The "power zone" is that red spot there.  The wind is stronger, so your pull and speed will be faster in that section.

I'll leave it here for now.  I found an interesting video by Corey Jensen on "Kite Chi" which is about learning to rely on less on your eyes and more on your other senses to move with the kite, especially for detwisting lines, which frees you to notice more what's happening on the ground (say, if you're flying with others).

I've also got to get back in touch with Mr. Greger (click if you're wondering who he is or why he is relevant) because my father-in-law wants copies of "Kites for Everyone" and "More Kites for Everyone", too.  Might as well go back and get them in person again, and get Princess to come along this time so she gets to make a kite herself as well.  The weather hasn't been quite right for some of these homemade kites as the materials are much lighter.  There will be plenty of time as summer vacation approaches.  I will get around to getting the materials we need (mostly 1/8" dowelling).

Oh, and I found material on kite aerial photography.  No joke!  You can actually combine kite flying with photography to get your own aerial shots.

Oh yes, this hobby could go on for years.  Right now, though, I'm headed to Wal-Mart to see about an SD memory card with more capacity than 32MB.  I have a standing agreement with Cimmy and my father-in-law to take some walks through Columbia Park and take some pictures.

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Author: jaklumen

Wherever you see "jaklumen", that's me- the username is still unique as of the current year. Be aware that the facet you see, is only a small part of the me that is me.

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