Page 1 of 2

Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Fri, Mar 14 2008, 09:14 PM
by infl8able
So I'm making my 2nd set of "train kites" - not sure if that's what you call it.

It's 5 stars that are separated by a couple feet of line and you fly them as a SLK and not as line laundry.

Is there a way to connect several sets of them and stake out as an arch? How would I go about that and what do you think is the minimum # needed? :?:

Thanks-

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Sun, Mar 16 2008, 03:43 AM
by Draftnik
Oui. Yea!

In an arch, the kites are attached (by sewing, but there's pry some other way to do it) horizontally to the flying line. The flying line works as the horizontal spar.

Nice idea!

TTFN,
Draftnik - thinking MAKR chocolate is evil right now. :roll:

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Sun, Mar 16 2008, 09:07 AM
by Mike
Draftniks comment seems like a good way to go.
You might be able to experiment with it by dividing up your two stacks of 5 kites into 5 stacks of two kites.

Another possibility is to fly them all separately but anchor them on an arched line of string. Making up numbers at random, an example would be to take a 100 foot piece of line and anchor both ends to the ground. The anchors could be 50 feet apart. Then attach your stacks to the line with a knot or carribiner. If the stacks tend to wander around the sky you'd have to space them farther apart on the anchor line.

Does that make sense? Anyone else have different ideas? Has anyone tried something like this?

Here's a quick sketch of the two ideas.

Image

Image

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Sun, Mar 16 2008, 11:09 PM
by Jim Foster
At WSIKF, Monday is Trains and Arches day. There have been arches with a couple of hundred kites in one arch, and trains with up to 1,000 kites, stretching clear into the clouds.

I have never seen a combination of the two, that is an arch of trains. I have seen a compound arch. Rod Milburn of Costa Mesa made such an arch a couple of years ago. I'll see if I can find a photo.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Sun, Mar 16 2008, 11:22 PM
by Jim Foster
It was WSKIF 2005. Rod won first place with this Red, White and Blue arch. I don't know how many kites there were, but they were in sets of about 20 - 25, connected end to end as I recall. We set it up as one huge arch with a smaller one on top. Then we pulled it down, attached one set of kites to the center of the large arch and moved the ends of the smaller arch out, holding the center of the large arch down witn a sand bag. It was beautiful.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 12:07 AM
by Jim Foster
I think if you attach a train to an arch, you will no longer have an arch. For instance, if you attach one train to the center of the arch, the train will distort the arch into an up-side-down "V". More trains will make more straight lines of "arch" kites between the train attaching points. The areas of the arch between the trains will be somewhat curved near the center of the arch, but very straight near the ends of the arch where it attaches to the ground.

Also, the trains will pull the arch away from the wind much more than an arch with no trains. The arch will become an extension of the trains. You can see in Rod's compound arch that the lower arch is distorted where the upper arch is attached.

You might be able to fly trains of small, light kites that do not require much wind without distorting to arch too much.

Don't know, never tried, just my thoughts. My only "hands on" experience with an arch was helping Rod with the compound. There were three of us holding, pulling, attaching and moving the three large sand bags around the field to give the arch it's shape.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 06:25 AM
by Drachenschwanz
:thanks: Gorgeous picture! That's a Great idea to have a themed day - the festivals I've been to, we just let it all hang out everyday!

Thanks Again! - I have some idea of what I'm looking at now.... a LOT of sewing!!! :lol:

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 11:52 AM
by Jim Foster
Drachenschwanz wrote:: That's a Great idea to have a themed day - the festivals I've been to, we just let it all hang out everyday!:


WSIKF goes for a full week, so it is broken into a different theme for each day. It works out very well. Here is a link to their schedule for the week.
http://www.kitefestival.com/pages/events.html

Yes, you have lots of sewing to do if you want to make a large arch or train. Some makers have made smaller arches or trains with a theme, say 20 to 30 kites, that are very nice, each kite being different. Being smaller, the kites are all close to the ground so that the detail can be seen.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 01:55 PM
by Mike
yeah, I think Jim's right.
Upon further thought, I think even the standard style arch with the kites being stacked wont work well either.
The normal arch, as Draftnik described it, has the arch line running along in place of the horizontal spar. That line wouldn't hold up to having kites stacked behind it.
So I think you would have to have horizontal spars on the first kite in each stack and a line connecting the horizontal spars to form the arch.
And to keep it looking like an arch, you would also need several stacks. I would worry about turbulence from each stack affecting the nearby stacks, especially any stacks that were near the ground.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 02:38 PM
by Jim Foster
There may be a very good reason we have not seen anything like stacks connected to arches at WSIKF. Those folks have been at that stuff for a very long time.

I have never seen kites in an arch with anything but line for the horizontal "spar". They sew the line to the back of the kite sail. Some use large extension cord winders from Home Depot and wind the kites up on them. Makes them easy to store and deploy.

All kites in a stack have all of the hardware to function as a single kite. Some are very inovative in the manner in which they attach one kite after another in the stacks. Some use a large box and store the kites face down, first kite in the stack on the bottom, last kite on top. They deploy those long trains in just a few minutes.

Also, most always in trains and stacks the kites have tails to help keep the whole works stable.

Here's a beautiful stack being deployed at the Japanese/American Kite Festival at Seal Beach last September,

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 06:09 PM
by Mike
Another thing about arches. I know when I've flown mine, you have to keep an eye on it. When the wind shifts, the arch loses it's shape. With stacked kites they might just run into each other.
But you know, it might work with a small stacks of 2 kites each, maybe even 3. It wouldn't be hard to play around with it a little. Most folks tend to do the same thing as others have already done. Infl8able, you might come up with something new! Try it in light, steady winds though. The stress on that lead spar may be a problem in strong winds and it will be easier to manage the whole thing in a light wind. Maybe get some folks to work with you at a club fly.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Mon, Mar 17 2008, 07:35 PM
by Jim Foster
Perhaps if you use kites in the trains that don't have a lot of pull so that they do not distort the arch???

At WSIKF in 2006 our group all made "three kite" trains at the "kite making" tent. They were very light and very simple. Then, we got the wild idea to put them all together into one long train. There were thirteen of us, making a train 39 kites long. We used the line supplied with the kites, so the pull after we had many kites in the air was a concern. No problem, it stayed together. We entered our train in the competition.

The judges were not amused.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Tue, Mar 18 2008, 02:07 AM
by TheBigKiteGuy
Pete Dolphin flys an "arch" that is a tether line with five or six full size (11 foot wingspan) ghost deltas. I see no reason that this would not work with short stacks of smaller kites.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Wed, Mar 19 2008, 09:01 PM
by infl8able
Jim Walker - I LOVE the PICTURES!!! They rea;;y inspire me to get busy sewing....and btw - I think you're train should've won best rookie arch! :lol:

So, now I have more questions - what strength line do I need based on how many kites I put together in this train/arch? Is there a formula.

I've asked a few people and been told I just need to try some different strengths out...

I was hoping for a little more direction that that - I get that there's no right or wrong but I don't want to put in this much work of sewing maybe 50 kites for an arach and have them go sailing off into the horizon because I didn't use strong enough line.

Is there such thing as using too strong of a line? :?:

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Thu, Mar 20 2008, 12:28 AM
by Jim Foster
I just sent an e-mail off to Rod Milburn to find out what line he used on the arch in the photo I posted. Will let you know.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Thu, Mar 20 2008, 11:18 AM
by Jim Foster
Just got this note back from Rod Milburn.

Hi Jim,

All my arches are on #150 line including the tethers. I doubt that line that heavy is needed but I tend to over engineer everything. Is there someone who is going to try the "stacked" arch approach? If so have them send you a picture.

Rod

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Thu, Mar 20 2008, 05:46 PM
by Mike
In a standard kite arch there isn't very much pull on the line because the kites tend to swivel back out of the wind.
I think a stack-arch will pull much harder.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Thu, Mar 20 2008, 08:36 PM
by Jim Foster
I told Rod that you were planning on adding stacks to an arch. Just got this back.


Interesting, I am in the process of doing something similar. I am using an "arch" of 10 deltaconynes spaced across a single line. For that I will be using stronger line as the conynes will pull quite a bit more. The trick is finding just how far apart you have to space them so they won't make a mess. I think that would be even more critical if you have trains on an arch.

Rod

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Fri, Mar 21 2008, 06:28 AM
by Mike
Jim Foster wrote: ...The trick is finding just how far apart you have to space them so they won't make a mess. ...
Rod


That will be the biggest experimental factor. Helpers will be needed, and some thought about making it easily adjustable for experimenting.

Re: Trains To Archs - Possible??

Posted: Fri, Mar 21 2008, 07:25 AM
by infl8able
Mike & Jim -

This is very helpful info...so is Rod using the line as the horizontal spar or is he tethering the 10 kites along the arch line kinda like Mike's illustration?

That's my biggest dilema at this point - I may put something together as an experiement and see what happens...I'll be sure to do it at a club fly :clubfly: so we can talk it

through... :up:

1st, there is much sewing to do...