10 May

Types of Kites

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Different Types of Kites

Many people consider a kite a kite, and that’s it. Yes there are different materials but not much to choose between them. But this attitude is a long, long way from the truth. In reality though there are actually a huge range of different types of kite – all suited to different purposes.

Whilst in some cases the difference between the kites is only subtle in other cases there is a considerable difference in how the kite performs, so it is important that you choose the right kite for what you want.

Types of Kite

The Diamond Kite

As with a lot of the names for the types of kite this should be pretty self explanatory. This is the classic type of kite that has been used throughout a lot of history, and is often the style that you picture when you think of a kite.

A diamond is created from solid materials and fabric stretched across the structure, creating the classic kite shape. Often there is a tail or streamers used to create stability. It is also usual that this style will be a single line kite, that splits part way up linking to the top and base of the diamond.

The Box Kite

A favorite in some parts of the world the box kite looks as the name suggests – like 2 boxes stacked together to create a kite.

The frame is created by putting together 4 corner poles and then stretching the fabric across the top and bottom of them to make it look as if two boxes had been stuck together leaving a slight gap between them.

The Delta Kite

Very similar in design to the diamond kite only rather than a diamond shape it is a triangle. This is the type of shape that is most common in the skies of America and Western Europe – and in many cases it is these that become stunt kites as well.

The triangle isn’t always exact – there can be different style with lumps (often the ‘ears’ of some novelty character face) and other style concessions. But it is always roughly a triangle.

Power Kites

These kites are a whole different proposition to the other styles of kite – rather than be designed to be pulled around in the air they are actually designed to pull the user around. They are the types of kite that you see people using to help with kite surfing, or pulling a boat for fishing.

They are designed to allow air to rush over them them to create a considerable amount of lift force. Usually rectangular in design they are very similar to parachutes, more so than they are related to most kites.

As you can see there is considerable variation in style. Even within these styles there is a lot of difference. The amount of lines can greatly change performance, as can the design for speed – and then of course there are the materials – which can be vital in generating speed and manoeuvrability.

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2 Responses to “Types of Kites”

  1. You don’t know the difference between a Delta (which has a KEEL) and a Delta-Conyne, which is a tri-box between a pair of delta wings.
    Also, the Diamond kite has a specific measurement – both sticks are the same length, they cross one-fifth of the distance down from the top. Any other dimension requires a tail. Works best if it also has a bow line.
    Other kites you don’t mention include the Dragon kite and the Sled, which is the best kite ever for a kid under five.


    Nancy Lockwood

  2. thanks for the info i am making a kite for physics class



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