Finally it was time for the Zaephay’s initial flight. Not the best of conditions, but I couldn’t wait any longer!
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The 27th Nordic Kite Meeting
Blokhus Denmark
June 2nd - 8th 2025
Blokhus Wind Festival
Blokhus Denmark
June 2nd - 8th 2025

After really speeding up the Zaephay project recently the kite was ready to fly yesterday. I was eagerly awaiting the wind to drop, but according to Murphy’s law, it didn’t. It got too late/dark and the wind didn’t die down, so I checked the weather forecast. Hmmmmm…. A bit too windy tomorrow too.

And it was right. Way too windy for the Zaephay’s maiden flight most of the day, but in the evening I sensed a drop in the wind. I grabbed the kite and a line set and headed for the local park.

Unfortunately not the best place to fly, surrounded by buildings and tall trees, but I couldn’t wait any longer. The wind had dropped … a little, and it was turbulent as hell, but I couldn’t wait any longer.

I hooked the kite up to my ten meter line set, parked it on its LE, went over to the handles, picked them up and started to fly.

Do you now that big grin, that silly big grin that goes almost all the way round? Yup, I wore that big silly grin for the thirty minutes or so I was flying.

Yes, the wind was interesting, bumpy and turbulent rolling in over the buildings. But for periods it was pretty gentle and allowed me to discover a few of the kites characteristics.

It’s still to early to jump to any conclusions, and I will have to wait for (much) better conditions before I even think of any form for adjustment. But based on the impressions when the wind was nice, I really look forward to more time with the Zaephay!

Looking good, don’t you think? ????

Zaephay, the initial flight


Here you can read more about the Zaephay.

7 Responses

  1. > Do you now that big grin, that silly big grin that goes almost all the way round? Yup, I wore that big silly grin for the thirty minutes or so I was flying.

    Piloting a kite of one’s own design in a first session – That must be something! Though I have never been in that fortunate position of trying a kite of one’s own design (not counting a failed bamboo and plastic sheet kite I tried to equip with rockets), I could guess I think. Basing the guess on that any kiting related achievement makes one feel really good.

    1. > Piloting a kite of one’s own design in a first session – That must be something!

      Yeah, it really is! ??
      Especially when your creation fly pretty well too. ?

      Which it did despite the somewhat … interesting wind conditions. Kind of scary when a heavy gust of wind starts playing with that fragile kite of yours! ?

  2. > It’s still to early to jump to any conclusions, and I will have to wait for (much) better conditions before I even think of any form for adjustment

    I like the slim look of the kite (though you can’t see it from the angle that photo in this post was taken). If this Hadzicki wing would be plane it would be a glider sail plane. Though returning to kites, if your aim is to go as low wind as possible, to then increase the area in the centre for “low wind pressure”, could it be fruitful for test purposes to add sail area by adding (thin) tape in the trailing edge? Or perhaps adding to the TE by taping on ripstop? I don’t know of course if you are aiming in this direction at all or if any of this would be rewarding in the end though.

    1. Yes, I know there are several things to change for a *really* low/no-wind kite. You’re mentioning sail area, and I have a plan on making another kite with a slightly different shape. Read: larger sail area and a slightly different angle to the down spars.

      But right now, I’m just gonna enjoy the Zaephay (v.1.0) for a while! ???

  3. > Yes, the wind was interesting, bumpy and turbulent rolling in over the buildings. But for periods it was pretty gentle

    To find the smooth low/no wind I’m fortunate to live very close to a sheltered parking. It is so close that I even keep the two most low wind QLKs constantly assembled at home to save session time. The parking works any time of the day if the (~1h ahead) forecast/reported weather says is up to and including 3 m/s. More wind and it becomes turbulent. In mornings and evenings when the wind drops (and thus seem to deviate from the forecast) it can work even if it is reported/is forecasted be 4m/s in average and 9m/s in the gusts (so therefore I often resort to the usual: studying trees and flag poles and listening to the wind). The parking is surrounded by trees and low hills in almost every direction. The trees are tall and close to the parking. Here and there the branches are even hanging over the parking. I try to be close to and downstream of the trees. Most of the times I use the 4.6m (15ft) lines, but you don’t need to be that close – The 8.2m lines also work there. I know trees eat kites, but I have not yet fed any (hrm, hrm local) trees. Some very light wind gets filtered through the trees. Since I have not been doing this no/low wind for very long time I don’t know what will happen when the trees get leaves. Will the wind just drop further then since the leaves should block the wind more than bare twigs do or will the wind instead randomly go around the trees and therefore increase the turbulence?

    Why the above chunk of text describing “my” parking (very far from Norway b.t.w.)? Well looking in the image of this post, the trees are a bit separated and you seem to be at a hill. It might pay off walking around in your place looking for sheltered places instead of the more traditional open ones. Houses to shelter off the wind might be “interesting”, sometimes a tall building can lead down wind and increase the wind at ground level. I can’t contribute much further here since kiting in areas where houses are more dense in occurrence is something I have left to explore.

    Doing low wind sometimes turbulent kiting there tend to be a few unplanned landings. Frankly, in these times, I’m a bit worried the in more highly populated and crowded places that someone would have “corona spat” on the ground, so I postpone trying/starting out doing short line kiting in/closer to the city. Perhaps that is for the better: acquiring more thorough skills before starting out in populated areas.

    1. Yes, I know.

      I live across the street from a school, and one of the schoolyards is completely surrounded by buildings and trees. It makes for an interesting playground for no/low-wind kites. Kind of like a place you’re describing in your comment above! ?

  4. > Kind of scary when a heavy gust of wind starts playing with that fragile kite of yours!

    And then hoping that the response of going really low into the ground boundary layer is a sufficient counter action (though with little effect for really short lines).

    > I live across the street from a school, and one of the schoolyards is completely surrounded by buildings and trees. It makes for an interesting playground for no/low-wind kites. Kind of like a place you’re describing in your comment above!

    Congratulations!!

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