Windless kite-flying
February 7, 2013 1:02 PM   Subscribe

12th Annual?? I had no idea this was a thing. Did you know this was a thing?

On preview, what odinsdream said.
posted by scottatdrake at 1:24 PM on February 7, 2013

via Kottke, I must add; he has sensational posts up today.
posted by dhruva at 1:26 PM on February 7, 2013 [2 favorites]

So indoor kite flying has been around since about 1990. Guildworks formerly of Beverly, MA started it with their tensegrity based Synergy Deca and Great Deca kites. Using carbon-fiber rods and 1/2 0z icarex and Polyester fabric. The kite flown in the video in the OP is a Revolution Indoor which is based on work done by members of Kites Over New England to modify a standard outdoor revolution for indoor use. The variations included a lightweight material called Orcon. And even lighter wrapped carbon rods. Other indoor videos can be found here. , here and all over YouTubes.
posted by Gungho at 1:29 PM on February 7, 2013 [5 favorites]

I think it's nice when people find a way to dance.
posted by zingzangzung at 1:48 PM on February 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

"via Kottke, I must add; he has sensational posts up today."

No shit,
Kezuroukai, Planing Competition Finals 2012
Every year this planing competition is held in a different region in Japan. In November 2012 it was held on the island of Shikoku, in the port city of Uwajima.
This is a video of a wood planing competition where woodworkers try to produce the thinnest transparent several meter long shavings off of a plank. The thinnest ones on the video are 9 microns long, or just over the hight of an X chromosome - this is a really good tool for getting context for the scale of small things.
posted by Blasdelb at 1:54 PM on February 7, 2013 [7 favorites]

Shit, one more awesome thing for me to be bad at but want to do anyway.
posted by jacquilynne at 1:58 PM on February 7, 2013

I heard about this a couple of years ago about a kid with epilepsy.
posted by royalsong at 2:19 PM on February 7, 2013

I'm not sure how I'm supposed to feel about this...

Nah, it's cool.
posted by windykites at 2:56 PM on February 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

Wow. How gorgeous. My heart kept skipping when the kite would just hover in mid-air, hoping that it wouldn't fall.
posted by xingcat at 3:00 PM on February 7, 2013

It's apparent wind, ya landlubber!
posted by Smart Dalek at 3:18 PM on February 7, 2013 [3 favorites]

Up there with American Freestyle Canoeing.
posted by unliteral at 5:41 PM on February 7, 2013 [1 favorite]

This is no excuse for mutilating that song.
posted by charlie don't surf at 6:38 PM on February 7, 2013

Hmm. Not sure where the misinformation about GuildWorks came from. The first indoor competition of which I'm aware was at the 1994 East Coast Stunt Kite Championships in Wildwood, NJ. Mark Ricketts introduced the first indoor Deca at that event and placed 8th out of 11. At the time, the few of us who were flying indoor tried the thing, which did beautiful up-and-overs, but wouldn't turn. Always reminded me of Douglas Adams' description, "Looks like a fish, moves like a fish, steers like a cow." (I'm still bitter that I placed 4th in that event; one of the winners should have DQ'd after flying outside the boundaries.)

The original Synergy Deca first appeared in early '94 (I believe it took kite of the year at the '94 KTAI convention), not 1990; I first saw and flew the kite at the '94 Old Dominion Sport Kite Championship. That summer gave us the indoor, and by fall Mark had come up with the Minergy series.

As for the official indoor Rev, that was released in 2001. Before that, it was a toss-up whether people used standard (or custom SUL) Revolutions in stock sizes or custom variants. I've never heard that the indoor rev was directly inspired by a KONE-derived version, but I suppose it's possible.

I've travelled internationally with Watty to kite festivals a couple of times over the past few years, and it's always a treat to watch him -- he's truly superb. It's been a lot of fun watching this video get attention!
posted by jburka at 8:38 PM on February 7, 2013 [3 favorites]

The song.

posted by ZaneJ. at 1:46 AM on February 8, 2013

What fascinates me about the music is how well it works. I'm quite fond of the original, and this version works, and I think that's a positive statement about the original.

The kite flying is beautiful.
posted by Goofyy at 1:56 AM on February 8, 2013

What's the name of the original song, please?
posted by allkindsoftime at 4:40 AM on February 8, 2013

Never mind, saw the comment on the youtube page.
posted by allkindsoftime at 4:44 AM on February 8, 2013

Those Revolution kites are amazingly responsive. I had no idea they could be flown indoors. Their site has some pretty cool video.
posted by kinnakeet at 5:39 AM on February 8, 2013

I am waiting to see the costumes for this when it becomes an Olympic event.
posted by boilermonster at 9:49 AM on February 8, 2013

OK sorry about the date of Guildworks. However the original indoor variation of the Revolution 1.5 kite was called The Orcon Avenger. It was developed by enlarging the sail of the Rev and changing the angle of the vertical spars. It is flown with about an 6 to 8 inch elongated set of top lines and longer handles.
posted by Gungho at 10:52 AM on February 8, 2013

I missed this the other day; it's outstandingly cool. Thanks for posting it. jburka or Gungho, I'd be interested in anything else you can say about this.
posted by LobsterMitten at 10:33 PM on February 9, 2013

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