Kites are a form of aircraft that are built out of extremely light-weight materials and controlled by tethering them with a string. Building and flying a kite is a major hobby in almost all parts of the world; so much so that there are a number of festivals dedicated to kites and flying them, all over the world.
The History of Kites
Kites were invented about 2,800 years ago in China and mainly consisted of bamboo for the frame, silk for the fabric and high-tensile silk for the string. Their primary uses were many, including testing the wind speed, lifting men, signaling and other military operations as well as to measure distances. Kite makers would decorate their kites with motifs and legendary figures while some would go a step further and add whistles. Over time, the art of building and flying kites spread across the continent and then all over the world.
Although in ancient times, kites were built of silk fabric and bamboo, with time the materials have changed. If you are looking to buy or build a kite today, it is quite likely that you will find paper and flexible wood as part of the kites body. If you are looking for a little extravagance, then you can find kites built out of Ripstop Nylon. These kites normally use carbon fiber for the spars while Dacron or Dyneema is used for the line.
If you are looking to take up kite flying, then there are a number of clubs that allow you to join up and learn from experienced kite makers and flyers. There is no dearth of such clubs and if you are looking to do something on your own, then the Internet and local library is a great place to start looking.
Making kites is not a difficult task at all. All you need are certain basic ingredients that can be found in any crafts material or hobby store and you are ready to begin. Blueprints are available freely on the Internet and there are many classes that you can join as well, to start on your hobby.
Kites are a wonderful form of entertainment and if you want to go for a bit of serious competition, then there are many international and local competitions that take place all round the year, across the world. If you are not the competitive type, then just a day out at the park with you family or friends is equally enjoyable with kites.
So whether you just want to buy them and fly them or build one with your own hands and head out to the park, you will always find a worthy and entertaining companion in kites.