Authors: Jan Westerink
Date Submitted: November 30, 2008
Article Type: Discourse

Working on historical kites with, most of the time, a minimum of information is quite a job of guessing, trying to get a touch of feeling or understanding of the original inventor’s thoughts about construction, design, and his aeronautical knowledge.

Last week, for instance, I received a picture from France of a giant kite which was launched from a marine vessel. Although it is a very clear picture of a flying kite, it doesn’t give you any information about the technical construction of the frame. Bamboo or wooden rods, metal fasteners or not: many questions to answer or to guess to my best knowledge. The only thing that is sure is that this kite has to be built because of its mathematical beauty.

So if I have finished this kite and it would be possible to meet the designer, he would immediately recognize his own design, and this would start a most interesting and exciting discussion about the difference of the construction solutions I chose and the ones he made let’s say one hundred years ago.

Page Number: 42
PDF Link: Discourse Issue