Let’s Go Fly a Kite – Your Own Homemade Box Kite
From kids to seniors, flying a kite is a wonderfully enjoyable event. Sure, you can go to the store and buy a pre-made kite off the shelf. However, that takes away one fun part of the whole experience.
You only need a few basic tools and some simple materials to make your own kite. One type of kite that is simple to make is a box kite. We'll tell you everything need, plus walk you through the steps to make a box kite. So, let's get ready to go fly a kite.
The tools to make a box kite are all things most people have right at home. You may need to purchase an inexpensive glue gun and some sticks, but you can improvise with other glue methods. Here's your tool list. It isn't a long list.
- Tape measure or yardstick
- Shop scissors
- Pencil or marker
- Ruler or straight edge – a yardstick will do
- Hot glue gun and glue sticks
The materials you'll need are about as simple as the tool list. You can get creative with the fabric type or colorfulness of your design, but lean towards a lightweight and strong fabric. Here are the things you need to construct your box kite.
- Four 3/8-inch dowels or square strips, each 48-inches long
- Lightweight fabric-type or plastic material
- One package of bendable straws
- One package of dental floss
- Crepe paper for kite streamers
- One roll of kite string
Build Your Box Kite
Set yourself up with a large, flat workspace. The kitchen table will do perfectly. However, if the weather's nice, building a kite on an outdoor picnic table adds to the experience. Now, let's go through the steps you'll take to turn your materials into a masterpiece box kite.
Step 1: You cut two of your 4-foot dowels perfectly in half. Lay these 2-foot pieces aside as your side supports.
Step 2: Cut the remaining dowels into 1-foot long sections. Lay these together in another pile.
Step 3: Cut your bendable straws into corner connectors. Each straw should have 1-inch left on either side of the bend point.
Step 4: Next, we'll make two rectangle walls. The sides will use two, 2-foot dowels with two 1-foot dowels as the top and bottom. Put a dab of hot glue on about ½-inch of the end of the dowel and slide it into a straw. Repeat for each corner until you have a rectangle. Repeat to make a second 2-foot by 1-foot rectangle. Allow these to dry for about 15-minutes.
Step 5: Set one of your rectangles inside the other. Make sure to center them, using your marker to mark the center point. Secure the rectangles as the center point with a dab of hot glue. Once it dries, begin to cross wrap this intersection using your dental floss. Finish with three or four half-hitches to secure the joint.
Step 6: Take your ruler and mark the remaining 1-foot sections exactly in the middle. Add a dab of hot glue to the end of each dowel and slide a straw onto the end. Lay two dowels across one another at a 90-degree angle, secure with a dab of hot glue, then wrap with dental floss like you did your rectangles.
Step 7: Use your pencil to mark a point 8-inches from the base dowel on each side of your two rectangles. This is where you will attach the center stabilizers. The stabilizers are the 1-foot X-shaped pieces you made in step 6.
Step 8: Fold over the loose end of the straw tips on your cross supports. Hold those against your 8-inch mark, and attach securely using dental floss. Repeat for all four connections. You will now have a lightweight, but sturdy box frame. Now, let's move on to the covering.
Step 9: Cut your fabric of choice into a pair of stripes, 9-inches wide and 50-inches long.
Step 10: Run a thin line of hot glue up the outside of one section of your upright frame. Attach your fabric width-wise to this section. Proceed, one frame section at a time repeating this exact process until you get back to the starting point. Run a thin bead of glue over the fabric at the starting point and secure it tightly around the frame.
Step 11: Repeat the same process again, tightly securing the second piece of fabric to the other half of your rectangle frame.
Step 12: Check the sturdiness of all your connections, and secure corners with loops using your dental floss. Let your box kite dry for about 20-minutes.
Step 13: Pick a top and bottom for your kite and attach your kite string to the top and bottom corners on the same side of the kite.
Step 14: Add some crepe paper streamers to the top corners, the middle, or wherever you like. Make sure to avoid adding streamers across the upright support that has your kite string attached. That will help prevent the streamers from getting wrapped up in your kite string.
Now that you have your own personal box kite, the only ingredient you need to add is a little breeze. Not only will you be able to enjoy flying a kite, but you'll be able to boast proudly that this is your kite. So, box kite in hand, let's go fly a kite up to the highest heights!