Kite (Styrofoam-only)

Kite (Styrofoam-only)

Some kites are made of Styrofoam only. Styrofoam is a tradename for expanded polystyrene thermal insulation material (often referred to as EPS), manufactured by Dow Chemical Company; it is bluish in color. Popular abuse of names has EPS foam cups and plates and other white EPS foam named incorrectly as "styrofoam" to the dismay of Dow Chemical Company. The name error persists. However, both true Dow STYROFOAM and the white EPS foam are intended to make kites. The mechanical properties of EPS particularly lend itself to making effective kites. A foundational US Patent taught by William B. Curtis of Texas and Wilbur Carleton Scott of Michigan the uses of EPS for kite making: [ Kite. Patent number: 3292883 Filing date: Sep 4, 1964 Issue date: Dec 1966.] And: [ Kite by Paul V. Teague, Jr. in 1962] taught normal kites: "The present kite is made of a formaceous material, which material is known to the trade as expandable polystyrene foam,"

Since expanded polystyrene is not easily recyclable due to its light weight and low scrap value, it has become a source for free material to make the wing of a kite; the kite line is rarely made of styrene. So, the "Styrofoam-only" is understood to concern the kite's wing and tail parts, not the kite line or bridle system. Styrofoam sheets, blocks, cups, eating plates, popcorn, and other shapes are used to make the kite's wing and tails. Kite makers will also purchase new Styrofoam materials or EPS. Styrofoam-only (or EPS-only) commercial mass-produced kites have punctuated the toy-kite industry both for rotary kites and static-wing kites.

Airplane Styrofoam-only kites

In the 1960s near Marina Del Rey, California, a commercial business produced a single-piece airplane-mimic kite; it was single-surfaced. It had good stability and operated in pleasant low winds. He demonstrated the kites singly and in trains. The mass-production was not complex; it began with sheet pre-foamed styrene; he pressed and heated the sheet in forms he made. It was created in 1961.

Styrofoam wall insulating wallpaper cylinder kites

[ Kite Photography] teaches a styrofoam cylinder kite.

Rotary-wing EPS-only kites

EPS meat-tray rotary-wing kite with Styrofoam eating plates for side rudders. [ [ Meat-tray kite. Bridling with the one rod to hold the bridling is respected as distinct from the wing.] ]

Several commercial rotary Magnus-effect kites [ [ Rotary kites.] ] have been produced.

There was a commercial toy kite of single solid EPS rotary Magnus-effect kite for flying in relatively stiff winds. [ U.S. Patent 3087698 Filing date: Jul 11, 1961.]

Styrofoam-cups-only kites

Art classes and problem-solving: Make a kite that flies using Styrofoam beverage cups only (glue permitted). Making the kite's wing of just Styrofoam cups is more challenging than making the kite's tail [ [ Aerodynamics. Shows Styrofoam-cup tail. The paper-plate can be Styrofoam plate.] ] of Styrofoam cups. Creative sled kites can be fashioned from EPS cups. [ Styrofoam Kites Airborne Pop-corn Cups And Others]

StyroKites include StyroHawks and StratoHawks...A StyroWing's an airplane-kite & more.

[ Free StyroKite Plans, click here!.]

With the above 4 cups, you can make your first StyroHawk.

In June 1995, The recycling directions for a Styrofoam-cups-only bird-kite (the StyroHawk kite) were copyrighted, the kite itself having been previewed in the March 5, 1995 Sunday Edition of the 'Pittsburgh Tribune Review'. A variation, with the wingtips flowing to a point (the StratoHawk kite), had written descriptions that were copyrighted the same year. This initial StratoHawk style evolved into the StratoHawk of today (three StyroHawks affixed together with the long pointed gull-like wings or shorter hawk-like wings); the initial single-wing model still retains merit.

In August 2005, the above-mentioned directions came to include durable versions of the evolved 3-wing StratoHawk. Shortly thereafter, the StyroHawk and the StratoHawk became known as StyroKites. Although A StyroKite is generally made from EPS cups, one can recycle and make the kites from any cup size, using Styrofoam as noted in the Styrofoam-bonding section of the instructions.

Basically, the single-wing kites are very robust and recoverable, jumping all over the sky in strong gusty winds. The triple-wing kites--though not being fine-tuned until the early 2000s-- lent themselves to bird-like looks and wing-flapping style. A notable attribute of all these kites is the lack of spars (as well as conventional tails); the durability and stability derive from the strategic use of fold-creases and packaging tape. Also notable is the incredible altitude that all these kites achieve using kite line as safe and cheap as dental floss (which can handle StratoHawks up to 6' wingspan--"using common sense"). Every StyroKite needs just a single-point attachment bridle which allows transformation into self-recovering stunt-kites.

The packaging tape is not necessary for the flight of these wings; the tape can be substituted with white glue or other suitable glue when constructing the modern StratoHawk. However, the use of this tape makes all StyroKites very rugged and waterproof (as for kite-fishing). Type of Work: Text; Registration Number / Date: TXu000695083 / 1995-06-05; Title: How to make high-flying bird-kites out of styrofoam cups! Description: 1 p. Copyright Claimant:Edward Howard McWhirter, 1953-. Date of Creation: 1995 Names: McWhirter, Edward Howard, 1953-

The Library of Congress,United States Copyright Office, 101 Independence Ave., S.E., Washington, D.C. 20559-6000, 202-707-3000; Type of Work: Visual Material;Registration Number/Date: VAu000328867 / 1995-01-03; Application Title: Ultrahawk; Superhawk. Title: Stratohawk; Description: Styrofoam sculpture. Copyright Claimant: Edward Howard McWhirter, 1953- ; Date of Creation: 1994 Other Title: Ultrahawk Superhawk; Names: McWhirter, Edward Howard, 1953- .
The published directions to make StyroKites can be followed to make one's own reproductions. Republishing the written articles needs permissions from the publisher and author of the articles.

Note that the "StyroWing" is another type of styrofoam-cups-only kite, which uses the basic StyroHawk-wing as part of a multi-purpose all-terrain wind-driven vehicle (and airplane/airplane-kite)...This StyroWing wind-car was copyrighted in December, 1992, and can travel on snow, land, water (above or below as a submarine), rocks, grass, air, etc. It is designed to never tip over, and so as to change directions as the wind direction changes.

Type of Work: Visual Material Registration Number / Date: VAu000246996 / 1992-12-23 Title: Styrowing. Description: Toy. Copyright Claimant: Edward Howard McWhirter, 1953- Date of Creation: 1992 Names: McWhirter, Edward Howard, 1953-

Food-service EPS-picnic-or-dining plate kites

Generally bridling and tailing does not break the intention about "foam-only" construction. The EPS plates used at the picnic just tease kite makers to make a kite from them. School teachers often have ample supply of the EPS foam eating plates. The plates are of low density and have some stiffness; some teachers just have the children decorate the plates for "non-flying kites" and hang the plates in classrooms. For others, just hanging a non-flying kite is not enough. Successful bridling and tailing the plate is the challenge. [ [ Preschool Education. Plate kites and other kites.] ]

[ American Kitefliers Association] (AKA) magazine Kiting featured in 1998 a Richard Dermer Dragon Kite or centipede kite of EPS picnic dining plates that spawned some following projects and awards. [ [ Dermer's Dragon. Article from AKA Kiting Volume 20, No.2 March/April 1998.] ] Chinese Dragon-Head centipede kite at Wing Luke Asian Museum workshop with teen kite makers followed the same plate theme. [ [ Kono Design.] ]

EPS food-service box top kite

Take-out food or left-over EPS packaging of restaurant food supplies material for a box-top kite. [ Box top kite, and method of making same John W. Jordan]

Constructing foam kites

Expanded pellet polystyrene (EPS} is taught for a novel series of kites specializing in joined plates of materia: [ Kite structure] by James E. De Yarman in 1978:

Generally, a kite according to this invention comprises a vertical plate and a transverse plate assembled together in intersecting relation. More specifically the forward portion of one of the plates is provided with first grooves along the longitudinal centerline on both sides thereof and the rear portion of the plate is provided with a first slot that opens rearwardly of the plate with the forward end of the first slot being aligned with the first grooves. The rearward portion of the other of the plates is provided with second grooves along the longitudinal centerline on both sides thereof and the forward portion of the other of the plates is provided with a second slot that opens forwardly of the plate with the rear end of the second slot being aligned with the second grooves. In the assembly of the plates, the first grooves receive the edge portions of the second slot and the second grooves receive the edge portions of the first slot to place the plates in normal intersecting relation.

Supply of Styrofoam or EPS for kites

Included in the consideration is Styrofoam and EPS foam. The flow of material for kite making in industrial societies often includes the following: blocks or boards of packing material, complex forms of packing material, popcorn, drinking cups, eating plates, meat trays, and beads. Kitemakers frequently have fun using free materials to make their kites. Some people see foam cups, plates, trays, etc. as a problem. Others consider the flow of discards as opportunity to put a free kite high in the sky and back. Near vendors and restaurants one may obtain cups, plates, and containers. Near stores and industrial sites, larger blocks and plates of foam are plenty. Finally, purchasing foam in shapes can be done at art stores, supermarkets, art-supply stores, and hardware stores. Density of the foam makes a difference to designers.

Cutting and shaping Styrofoam or EPS for kite making

When a found or purchased piece of Styrofoam or EPS foam is not ready for bridling for kiting, then shaping or sculpting by deletion processes or addition processes occupy the kite maker. Sometimes a found piece of Styrofoam or EPS forma stands as a challenge to bridle and tail it into a kite without cutting from or adding to the found piece; a food-service plate kite is a common item for the no-cutting or no-adding kite project. Computer-aided hot-wire cutting airfoils for the kite's wing is a high-end kite maker's method.

Bonding Styrofoam to Styrofoam or EPS to EPS for kite making

When bonding Styrofoam to Styrofoam or EPS to EPS, one can use white glue, packaging tape or both (in which case, the packaging tape also waterproofs the white-glue seam); this system allows one to conceivably make these Styrofoam or EPS kites of any size by using combinations of Styrofoam, paper, or large Styrofoam insulation sheets. Of course, certain kite designs could easily be extruded or machine-formed by using whatever variation of EPS or Styrofoam to achieve desired characteristics. Other means are available where special safety precautions are to be followed: hot-melt glue. [] , industrial strength polystyrene spray adhesive []

Styrofoam or EPS kite patents

* [ Kite] U.S. Patent 5000401 Filing date: Sep 26, 1989.
* [ Airplane kites and method] by Alfred P. Kerns. Flat EPS is a focussed choice for the kite. U.S. Patent number: 6290179 Filing date: Nov 5, 1998.


See also

*Kite line
*Kite types
*Kite applications
*Kite books
*Kite mooring
*Kite control systems

External links

* [ Foam Cutting CNC Machines]
* [ EPS Moulders Association]
* [ Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) Foam]
* [ EPS History]
* [ Kool Kite.] If one considers the bridle as including the single stick, then this kite is included in this article.

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