Bob and Charmayne's kites made in 2005

2005 zoomed by. It has been a busy year, both in and outside of kiting. Besides our normal routine, we remodeled 2 bathrooms. These are the kites we made and classes we taught:

Potter kite.  We made another red Potter for the raffle at Ft. Worden Kitemaker's Conference. This was also our class kite in 2005. There are numerous red Potter's now seen on the West Coast. From reports we have gotten, the class kites are tremendous fliers, just like both of ours.

Christian Baden Powell came from Germany to teach a very unique appliqué method. We hot cut on the paper pattern, used a water soluble wall paper paste and stitched the design. The result is a totally flat piece with all edges heat sealed and no back cutting! Brilliant!

Christian, Charmayne and the kite

My Ft. Worden class kite... student, teacher, kite

Suruga kite

and the Suruga flying, too!

Garber Target kite replicas

 Military kites was the 2005 Fanø Classic theme. I planned on taking our original Gibson Girl rescue kite to fly. We thought it would also be good to build a replica of the WWII Garber Target kite. Our first was the 5 foot Mark I, which many kiters know of. There are many original ones of this version, both with the Japanese zero and the German Iron Cross on the wings of the plane's silhouette. Most of the original kites have faded to a brown-taupe color. The Garber specifications call for the fabric to be "Atmospheric blue". 

We used the original military specifications as we built our replicas. We tried to keep very true to Dr. Garber's plans. "The cloth is rayon, impregnated with vinylchloride to be more wind-tight. The cringle tapes prevent the cover from creeping inward when under extreme wind pressures; they are of double herringbone tape, Navy specification 27-T-788. The boltrope is #36 cotton seine twine (in some issues a smaller size was used)." We used 1.5 ounce ripstop nylon in a close approximation of the correct color. Twill tape, cotton bolt ropes, simple hems, and the appliquéd "target" airplane completed my easy work on the kite. Bob spent a lot more time making the wood spars, bridle connections, hinges,  rudder and fins and even a control bar. All his work paid off. Our first kite flew. Beautifully well! On to the second.

The replica Target kites in the kite room

our two kites flying

I am very proud of our accomplishment with these kites. It was such a thrill to fly them and see them being flown. Take a look at this page for more pictures of them and links. Click here to read the article I wrote for the AOK newsletter.

The latest line laundry is a very interesting concept. Bob found a web site for Polyhedra forms. Viola! our new line junk.

Polyhedra line laundry  Polyhedra line laundry

The Polyhedras flying

We have tried 3 forms of the many possibilities.

line laundry

No, not spiky balls. They are cubes and triangles intersecting each other. The wind on Whidbey Island was not enough to completely fill them but we think the idea works.

Another 6-legged ball guy

 We made the first one in 2003. Spike and Mohawk Guy aka Punk came to join the pink and blue guy in 2004. Now we have a fourth, sporting a Mickey Mouse beanie and ears. All have their 6 long skinny legs and stand up eyes.

2005 Mickey ball guy  back of Mickey

Here's the group with Mickey...

4 Ball Guys

ball guy revisited

And the 2009 updated group. Mickey is now a baseballer! Click on the upper photo for a large view. Click on the lower photo for another page with back and side views.


Another class we taught in 2005 was at the Kite Museum in Long Beach, Washington. 5 Berlin Fliers were made and one Potter. When you are building kites, it is always a fun weekend.

Berlin Flyers complete!

I also made our friend Kay Woodring a 6-legged ball guy. Shown here, being all the same color, it is actually harder to sew than the bi-color guys.

Kay's 6-legged Ball Guy


Roi des airs

(King of the Airs)

This is our replica of the French prizewinning 1911-12 kite. It won competitions in it's day for stable, high angle and altitude flight. The modern day version we built is 1 meter high by 1.8 meter wide and flies like the champ it's parent was. The original kite was available in the Gomez catalog in 2 models.  The French tri-color rosette was positioned either on the wings or the box and the size differed from one to the other. The one we chose to replicate had red cotton wings, a lower red box and a white upper box.

Roi des airs
Russian Box

Another old kite we replicated is our Russian 3-celled winged box. We had a tiny photo to go by. Bob did his magic thing drafting a pattern. I made an executive decision to use colored fabric. We gave it a test fly in the driveway and a debut at the Whidbey Island Festival. Another successful replica.

John Freeman's twisted Log Cabin kite class  Twisted Log Cabin kite

We spent a weekend with a group of Ft. Worden friends, trying out John Freeman's class instructions for this Twisted Log Cabin kite.

Bob's Christmas Kite, a "Hi-flier" replica.

Cloud Buster: COPTER

Cloud Buster Copter