There are literally hundreds of different types of kites to choose from, so how do you know what to buy? Choices can be narrowed down rather quickly if you decide what you want from the kite, and who your are buying for, if it is a gift.
Quality should be a major consideration in your decision. Cheap kites will fall apart after only one or two flying sessions. A good quality kite may last several years if it is not eaten by a tree!
Quality kites will feature ripstop nylon covering material, fiberglass or durable plastic structural material, tough connectors, and kite line suitable for the kite. The cost of a quality kite in comparison to a cheap one may seem like a lot, but the quality kite will fly better and last much longer. Many quality kites offer a warranty on the materials. Unfortunately, the warranty doesn’t cover hungry trees.
If the kite is to be a gift, the age of the recipient will determine to a large degree the type of kite purchased. Children as small as toddlers can fly a mini-kite with supevision. Mini-kites are available in three styles - diamond, delta, and box. These neat little kites are about ten inches long, and fly well.
Kids five and up have more choices. Smaller diamond kites and sky dancers are good choices. Sky dancers require no assembly aside from tying on the flight line. They are colorful, active kites in the sky.
Giant dragon kites are great gifts for kids ten and up. These kites need no assembly, and have tails ranging from eighteen to thirty feet in length. Delta kites are wonderful beginner kites because they are so easy to fly and have several variations. One variation are bird shaped kites, many of which have flapping wings.
Box kites are also a good choice for the kids in this age group if they are a little more experienced kite fliers. There are many variations of the box kite to choose from. Box kites require a little more assembly than the kites previously mentioned. Wind requirements are also higher, needing at least eight mph breeze to launch. They are very stable fliers once launched.
Variations of the box kite include cellular, geometric, and transportation kites. Cellular and geometric kites offer unique shapes and colors. Eyecatching, they are fun and easy to fly. Trasnsportation kites are box kites which are modeled after aircraft. Monoplane, bi-planes, helicopters feature turning propellers which add to the appeal. A balloon style kite has a spinning gondola hung under it. These kites are suitable for kids ten and up
Parafoils are frameless kites which sort of resemble parachutes. These sturdy kites are compact, and can be carried in a backpack. Great for picnics or a day at the beach they can be enjoyed by kids eight and up. The larger ones are suitable for ten and up.
Stunters are for older kids and adults. Beginner stunt kites can fly in as little as six mph wind, but don’t perform as many stunts as the bigger ones. There are different levels of stunt kites - beginner, intermediate, and advanced competition level. The larger stunters require at least eight mile per hour wind to fly.
Soft stunt kites are similiar to the smaller parafoils in that they have no structural material. There are many sizes available, the largest can be safely used by people eithteen and older. The giant foils can pull a person on in line skates or skies. Beach dwellers use them with boogie boards, a short version of the surfboard, to kite across the surf - an impressive sight to see.
As you can see there are a lot of diffent types of kites and all are fun to fly.
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