Inspired by @PatCoyle’s look at small, cheap parafoil kites for mapping, I’ve been looking for a stable, sparless kite that could lift a small camera and pack down easily into a backpack. At the same time, @TonyC has been working to make some super-simple rigs for flying the Mobius action cam.
With the spring here, I was finally able to fly a camera on my kite and demonstrate that it could lift a Mobius. While still an early-stage kit with limited testing, @TonyC rolled these up into a kit in the Public Lab store.
My small kite:
Last fall I bought a 7.5 square foot parafoil kite from In the Breeze kites. Its flight performance was disappointing, as it hunted a lot and would turn over in higher winds. It didn’t approach the 25mph top wind speed advertised, and became unstable at about 15mph.
So I modified the kite. I sewed two little tabs of ribbon onto the two back corners and bridled a piece of string between them, and then attached the tail.
With the tail bridled like that, its a rock solid flyer. I tested it in 20mph winds with 25mph gusts and it held steady. Here it is lifting a mobius in lower wind:
For the Mini Kite Kit, we had an upholstery shop down the hall from our office sew tabs onto the back of the In The Breeze 7.5’ parafoil. They did a much neater job than I did.
The Camera Rig
I used @TonyC’s mobius rigging, detailed here:
Its pretty stable. It gets a bit of a pendular motion.
I haven’t gotten it high enough to get any good shots yet, but here are are few from low altitude:
I need to fly the camera more! I’m interested in more sophisticated rigs for oblique shots and panoramas. I’m excited to have a stable kite that fits in my backpack.
Archived 4th of March 2018 from Publiclab.org.