cambered leading edges
A camber in a sail is more concerned with the center of the sail
rather than the trailing edge of the sail.
A Camber is defined as 1.a A slightly arched surface, as of a road
a ship's deck, or an airfoil. b. The condition of having an arched surface.
The term comes from the Latin CHAMBER which means an enclosed space or
On the sails of a sail boat the "camber" forms just behind the mast
pushing the sail out giving the arched look the sailor than pulls the
trailing edge of the sail taught thus removing the billow/arch from the
back half of the sail. this then gives tha sail more of a billow in the
front and tapers it off in back just like an airplane wing.
On a kite the leading edge would serve the same purpose as the mast
on a sail boat. The camber would form in the area just behind the leading edge
in just about the center of the wing and the trailing edge needs to be
kept tight to maintain the airfoil shape of the wing.
Sail makers for boats cut the fabric so that their is more fabric in the
area just behing the mast and the center of the sail this allows them to
controle the shape of the airfoil.
The only kite on the market that I know uses this is the Jabberwalky by
Bob Childes. I talked with him to great extent about his kite at Grand
Haven three weeks ago and if you look at the grain of the fabric and
the stitching the three pannels just behind the leading edge are laid
out so as to give the maximum strech from nose to wing tip. and he uses
one straight and one zig zag stich to join the pannels. Where in the
rest of the kite he uses two straight stiches. It is in those three
pannels that the camber is supposed to form. on my Big Brother I think
the two pannels that sit just behind the pannel that runs parallel
to the leading edge, but above the trailing edge pannel,(one will be
white and one the color of the kite) work to forn the camber. However
I have no confirmation on this.
In any case whatever the two kites are doing they do extreamly well and
this is the way it has been explained to me by Bob Childes and some sailing
friends of mine.
Happy Flying George North@frith.egr.msu.edu
Return to Kite Fliers's Site