I will add kite reviews to these pages as and when I have time. They will all give my own opinion of the kites or accessories under review without influence from the maker or retailer of the product.
Where possible I shall say where I bought them, but in most cases they will also be available elsewhere. If you are lucky enough to have a local dealer, you can save a lot on freight charges, which can almost double the price of a kite.
All prices quoted are in US dollars unless stated otherwise. These prices may not be up to date.
An inexpensive 11ft delta that flies well.
A very unusual and strong-
Basically this is a 10ft wingspan tunnel-
For those who like novelty inflatable kites, the Heart by New Tech Kites is a good
one to have. It’s just over 5ft across and nearly 14ft long, and flies very easily.
Like all inflatable or parafoil-
A very unusual design from Joel Scholz, this kite is made by HQ Kites. It resembles
Gomberg Delta Conyne
The delta conyne kite is a combination of box and delta, and is a dependable kite
in most conditions. For some reason there are not a lot of them around, but Gomberg
Kites, or G-
These useful kites come in several sizes: 14ft, 24ft, 36ft and the enormous megasled at 81ft. All measurements refer to the square area of the kite. The Powersleds all have very flexible spars, which can be bent double, and the kites fold up into their own drogue tail, which makes a very good bag. They can be unpacked and into the air in a very short time, and fly easily in average winds. They have a lot of pull, so even the smallest is not suitable for a young child, and the largest needs an experienced pilot and a good anchor to tie it down to. They will lift large amounts of line laundry and are fun kites to fly on their own. I have a 24ft, and a Megasled in the special version designed by Barbara Meyer. It is a flying work of art, but pulls like a locomotive in a strong wind. All these kites are highly recommended. Picture Pretty Kites have all sizes, and most Premier dealers carry some of them. My Megasled came from Cobra Kites, a good place to deal with.
Premier 12ft Octopus
This soft kite is based on a design by Peter Lynn, who is the brains behind the biggest kites made. Unfortunately, this particular variant made by Premier Kites is NOT a great buy. It is well made and flies quite nicely, but the drawback is the cost. At a list price (2011) of $104.95 it is definitely not good value, and you could spend your money much better elsewhere. This is really a very small (children’s size) kite, since the tentacles naturally make up most of its length, and it is one of the few kites I have bought that have disappointed me (my fault). I use it as a piece of line laundry under another kite, where it does a reasonable job.
The PL Octopus design is great, but go for a larger size, where it really comes into its own. The smallest one available from the Peter Lynn factory, at 20ft, is NZ$540 (about $420) and, if you can afford it, is a nice kite. There are much bigger ones, too! Or for a cheaper Chinese alternative, a 49ft Octopus in a different design and various colours can be had from EmmaKites for $78. I have one of these, which flies nicely and has stood up well to quite a bit of use, although the quality is obviously nowhere near the same level as that of the PL kites.
Rainbow Burst/Rainbow Arch giant flowtail
These huge kites, and a third design, come from Premier Kites. They are 13ft (4m) across and nearly 45ft (14m) long. They are, in consequence, quite heavy, so the freight on them is not cheap. They fly easily in winds from about 7mph up to 20mph, and develop a strong pull in anything over 10mph. They will lift plenty of line art/laundry, but make a spectacular display on their own. Definitely not for children, although smaller versions of this “flowtail” style make ideal children’s kites. Price (2011) is $179.95, and I bought mine from Helen at Picture Pretty Kites who usually has them in stock.
This is the cheapest “big” delta I can recommend. At 11ft wingspan, it makes a big
impact in the sky, and has enough lift to hoist plenty of tails or line art. The
Shazam is made of ripstop nylon and fibreglass spars. Some other deltas this size
have carbon spars for lightness, but the Shazam is capable of flying in winds as
light as almost any rival can manage. A very reliable kite and ideal for anyone
who wants to get into bigger kites without spending a fortune. Price (2012) is only
$70, from Gomberg Kites or G-
This stunning design from Martin Blaise is made very well by New Tech Kites. It’s
4.5ft across and about 12ft long, and a great attention-
An extremely eye-
Premier Giant Fish
You’ve been to the kite festivals, seen those giant Peter Lynn kites, and want something similar, if not quite so big and expensive. You have two options: you can go to the Peter Lynn factory site and choose something wonderful from the huge range there (or from Gomberg Kites if you are in the USA); or you can make life easy for yourself by buying the Giant Fish, designed by Juergen Ebbinghaus and made to a high standard by Premier. It is undoubtedly the simplest “show” kite to fly, and even a beginner could handle it with very little instruction. It is 22.5ft (7m) long, yet is extremely gentle and flies in a steady fashion without needing the “pilot” kite which most of the show kites require to help keep them aloft. I usually put this up, anchor it, and leave it to fly unattended for hours. At a list price (2011) of $699.95 it is not cheap, but good value. Ask around and you may get it for less. I bought mine from Helen at Picture Pretty Kites.
There is also a “mega” version which is twice as long (45ft), and if anyone wants to buy me one I’d be very happy! If your horizons are set lower, the “large” version at 11ft (3.4m) might suit, and it’s a lot cheaper, too.
If you want a traditional box kite, this is the one to go for. From Into the Wind,
it is colourful, well-
The Levitation is a delta from Into the Wind, produced in two sizes, 7ft and 9ft.
I have the smaller one, which comes in a choice of two colour schemes, built of
ripstop nylon with fibreglass spars. The larger one has only one standard scheme,
and is also produced as a “light” version with carbon spars, to fly in lighter winds.
The 7ft kite is great value at $49 (2012 price) and like all deltas is super-
This is probably my favourite kite. It is a magnificent design by George Peters and made to a high quality by Into the Wind. It comes in two designs, and I have both, although I prefer the simple black and white version. Built of ripstop nylon with carbon spars, this huge bird has a wingspan of almost 16ft and flies in such a stable fashion that you can tie it down and leave it to entertain spectators for hours. I fly mine with matching 55ft fuzzy tails, and they really seem to fill the sky. If the wind is too light, I remove the tails and the birds fly equally well without them. Not a cheap kite at $325 (2012 price), but worth the money. Recommended wind speed 5 to 20mph. Easy to assemble and to fly.
I have three of these New Tech Kites deltas, one in each of the available colours, which I fly on one line. They are fairly small, at 64” wingspan, and of unusual design, with a tunnel keel which is said to improve stability. They are very well made, of ripstop nylon and carbon spars, and fly in winds from around 3 to 20mph. I have found them to be very reliable fliers, and can certainly recommend them to anyone looking for a smaller delta that is going to last a long time and give a lot of satisfaction. Ideal as a first kite or for a child. I bought mine from Windpower Sports at the reasonable price of $39 each.
This is a good-
This beautiful kite from Into the Wind is a variation on the genki design, but made
more stable by having keels. The cut-
11ft Premier delta
This is a well-
This kite from Premier Kites comes in several designs, but not all are available
all the time. My favourite is the Flames design, but there is something to suit
most tastes. The construction is ripstop nylon with carbon spars, and mine has survived
a hard life, including a dunking in the sea for 30 minutes, without complaint. Rokkaku
are good light-
One of the first “real” kites I bought, the Morea, designed by Ron Gibian and made
by Premier Kites, is a double-
At $129.95 (2011 price) it is wonderful value. I bought mine from Kites and Fun Things, who ordered it in for me as it was not a stock item. Hard to find elsewhere, for some reason, but enquire from your favourite dealer who may be able to get it from Premier.
Fish Pyro Delta
This is one of my favourites. The term “pyro delta” came because these kites were
originally flown as part of organised firework, or pyrotechnic, displays. Deltas
with attached tails are known elsewhere as “flowtails.” This one was designed in
Germany but comes from G-
Little Bear delta (by guest reviewer, my friend Tony Travaglia from Oamaru. New Zealand)
As I wanted (needed) a light wind kite to fly in our fickle winds I chose the Little Bear as it will fly in winds of about 2mph up to about 10 mph. The Little Bear fitted the bill even though there are a couple on the market that fly in about the same wind range but the availability and speed of delivery made me choose this one.
I dutifully assembled it and took it outside to fly. The wind was too strong so I had to wait another 24 hours to try it. I was not disappointed as it climbed straight up to rise above me and float on the wind. I let it out to 300 feet and it stayed locked up there, almost at the zenith.
The next day I decided to go for the end of the line (500 feet). A flawless launch, pulling at the line, it rose to the end of the line with no qualms, directly above me. I let it stay up there for about 10 minutes before lowering it to the 400 foot mark. It was well behaved with no drama.
One thing to watch out for is that when the wind drops to almost zero it will float as it falls but the rate of fall is rapid and one has to be alert to be able to wind the line in quickly. The balloon keel helps it to behave, as sometimes when it passes the zenith (directly overhead) it will go into a loop but one can let a bit of line out to slacken it and then pull it back and the kite will recover its normal flying attitude.
This kite is a pleasure to fly. I recommend it highly and give it a 10/10. From Into the Wind, $110 (2012 price.)
This is a very interesting and unusual kite from Malaysian designer Ceewan, made
by Premier Kites. It is quite big, but the quoted height of 11 feet is misleading,
since this includes the parts of the main spar which project at top and bottom. The
actual length of the sail is about 8.5 feet, which still fills a lot of sky. The
kite, made of ripstop nylon with carbon and fibreglass spars, rolls up very small,
and is quick and easy to assemble or disassemble. It has no bridle, and the line
is tied directly to the top of the spar. This makes it very simple to fly more than
one on the same line. There is amazingly little pull despite the size of the sail,
so even with three kites on the line, a small child could hold them and only light
line is needed -
Rainbow Butterfly (by guest reviewer, my friend Tony Travaglia from Oamaru, New Zealand)
This large butterfly (82” x 43”) from New Tech Kites is a beautiful sight in the
air. I have had many people comment that “ It looks like a real butterfly.” Once
aloft it will float on the breeze, wings flapping gracefully if the wind speed rises,
drifting on the breeze if it drops. No drama at all, just a stunning sight of this
beautiful and graceful butterfly in the air. Even from a mile away (I fly at about
200 feet), it can be seen by folk who phone me to comment on that beautiful butterfly.
If the wind blows hard the kite makes quite a rustle and I prefer not to fly above
12 mph as it becomes unstable and it can plummet downwards at an alarming rate. One
could adjust the bridle to cope with the higher wind-
Luna Moth (by guest reviewer, my friend Tony Travaglia from Oamaru, New Zealand)
Designed by Carsten Domann and made by Premier Kites, this is one big insect at 140”
by 102”, flying in winds from 5 to 12 mph. I bought mine from Picture Pretty Kites
for $162. A beautiful kite but unfortunately the first attempt at flying ended in
disaster, the dihedral broke, the wings folded up. On inspection it obviously had
a crack in it from the time it was manufactured. The wing spars also broke with the
pressure. I emailed PPK and Helen sent me some new spars. I sourced a dihedral from
a kite firm in Auckland NZ, the item was of far better quality than the original.
All glued together and repaired, one had to wait for an opportune time to test fly
it. Low wind and a wide open space was a prerequisite and today it flew. Beautifully.
A stunning and magnificent sight in the sky as can be seen by the photograph. Easy
to fly and in a light wind, the only drawback in some cases would be the time spent
fine tuning it to fly straight as a little too much tension on either wing will make
it unstable and it will then fall to the ground because of the extra lift generated
by the tighter wing. A length of ribbon from the two moth tails would look great
and add to the stability of the Moth. Rating 8/10. Excellent service from PPK
too. (Warning: I have now heard of other faulty examples of this kite. I do not
advise buying one unless Premier sort out the problems. -
This is a type of parafoil kite, similar in design to the well-
Mayan Double Delta Conyne
There seems to have been a change of name with this kite. I bought it under the
above name, but it is now listed by Premier Kites as “Swept Wing Double Box Delta.”
Either way, it is a most attractive and intricate design by Barbara Meyer that flies
very well and looks like a stained-
This is a well-
11ft Mesh Delta
Designed by Willie Koch and made by Premier Kites, this is an amazing construction
of many pieces sewn together to give the impression of a woven mesh. Compared to
other deltas of similar wingspan, it has a little less pull, and also requires a
little stronger wind, due to the many “holes” in the sail. But it is a very able
flier, and can carry sizeable tails when there is enough wind. It also looks great
on its own, and is a lovely kite to fly. It is well-
19ft Mesh Delta
The “big brother” of the previous kite and of similar construction, this is a monster. However, it is not difficult to handle, although it has a considerable pull. It dominates the sky and will carry the biggest tails I have, including the huge 30ft Bubble Tube tail, without any bother. It will also lift plenty of “line laundry.” It is a beautiful sight, and a good choice for anyone wanting just one big kite. Premier Kites have done well to bring this into production, and although the price is a lot higher now than when I bought mine from Kites and Fun Things, the kite is probably well worth it. Just think of all the sewing in putting those pieces together! List price $499.95, but shop around if you want one.
This is not a kite, but an item of “line laundry,” or “line art,” terms referring
to pieces hung on a kite line to add to the display. They bring the display closer
to the ground and thus to the spectator, and fill up more of the sky. They come
in many forms, from simple spinners to animal shapes and many other fantastic designs.
This fish is 8ft long, and needs a fairly big kite to provide lift, but is a magnificent
spectacle in the air. It is another Premier Kites product, and well-
Rokkaku is Japanese for “six sides,” and this type of kite is very popular.
11ft Flapping Bat
If you want something to scare the kids, this creation by Premier Kites might be
a good choice. It is a well-
A beautiful kite, this flies really well in very light winds when many other kites
I haven’t measured this, but the seller says 49ft so I believe it. I usually describe
it as my “50ft Octopus” as that sounds better! It is big, anyway, so definitely
not one for the children. It flies well in steady winds, with its tentacles gently
undulating, and draws a lot of attention. If you buy one, be aware that the gaps
in the stitching of the tentacles are supposed to be there to assist airflow. I
didn’t realise this at first and almost had them sewn up. There’s always something
new to learn in kite-
The Highlighter is a very well-
Made by German company Colours in Motion, this kite is actually called Glucksbringer Kleebatt, which translates to lucky clover. I was flying this on the beach one time when a big earthquake struck. The whole beach undulated and I was thrown over but held onto the kite. I’m not sure if that was luck or not! It’s big, at 8ft across by 25ft long, and a good flier. It also pulls quite hard, so you need strong line and, if you’re tying it down, a good anchor. It can pack away into the “bucket” at the end of its tail (there is a bag, too) so is very easy to carry around. It’s also quick to go up, if you don’t get the bridle lines tangled. I tracked mine down from a dealer in England, and I haven’t seen it on any American website, but you could enquire at your Premier Kites dealer as Premier have a relationship with CIM.
Another Colours in Motion product, this large and attractive piece of line laundry is hard to find. I don’t think it is available in America, and I got mine from England. Bubble Mickey needs quite a big kite to lift it, and a reasonable breeze, but looks great when conditions are right.
Price (2012) is 29 pounds 50 pence from Kites4U.
This udderly beautiful piece of line laundry is another from Colours in Motion, but
available through Premier Kites dealers. It is 6.5 feet long and obviously late
At 41ft long, this kite fills a lot of sky. It dances in lively fashion like all
dragons, but is a reliable flier, and so quick and easy as there is nothing to assemble.
In flies in a wide wind range, and is a lot of fun. Well-
Premier 65” diamond
Most people think of diamonds when they hear the word kite, but associate them with
children. This big kite from Premier Kites is definitely adult-
Remember to join the American Kitefliers Association for 10% discount from most of the dealers mentioned, plus lots of other benefits.
Please note that these reviews are merely my own opinion,or that of any guest reviewer, and I take no responsibility for any of the information given, although I have tried to be as accurate as possible.
“Beast” dragon kite
This style of kite is known as a “dragon” regardless of what the graphics depict.
The “Beast” is one of three designs from Into the Wind, the others being “Cobra”
and “Beauty.” The graphics are all done in different-
This is a cellular kite, a variation on the familiar box kite. With a diameter of
69”, it makes quite an impact in the sky, and flies in a lively but not very stable
fashion. It is well-