Box-kites were a new invention a very few years ago. People said, "No use trying to put a drygoods box up in the air," and yet something very similar in shape has been successfully used for a number of practical purposes. The box-kites usually require more breeze than the plain surface kites, but are stronger pullers, which means also heavier lifters than their lighter breeze cousins. Before entering the discussion of box-kites, it will be well to understand some terms that are used quite generally by all kite enthusiasts. Fig. 59 is a plain two-celled box-kite; a, is the length of the kite. The framework consists of four sticks, one at each corner, and four braces, two near each end of the kite, placed diagonally across the inside of the kite from one corner stick to the other. The covering consists of two bands passing on the outside of the four corner sticks, one band at each end.
The band and space enclosed is called a cell of the kite. So this kite has two cells. The length of the cell is the same as the width of the kite and is represented by b; the depth of the cell is the same as the height of the kite in its present position, and is shown by letter e; the breadth of the cell by letter d; and the distance between cells, c, is called the vent. Nearly all box-kites require the vent, and the vent is usually wider than the breadth of the cell. Usually the two cells, the fore and aft, are the same size, but not necessarily so. No one would be seen flying a box-kite with any kind of tail unless that had a purpose in carrying out the design. The square box-kite, Fig. 60, is square in cross-section, is very serviceable for flying, and is convenient for carrying. It is usually made to fold up, and the bridle is attached to one corner piece of the frame. This kite flies diagonally in the air. It is quite easy to attach the bridle to two corner sticks of the frame, when it flies horizontally, Fig. 61. Lining cambric is good for covering and some bright color should be used; but some prefer a good wrapping paper. Chinese tissue may be used if the kite is not too large. The corner sticks stand diagonally in the corners of the kite so that the notches of the braces can fit over them, see Fig. 62. The drawing represents the end of the kite, with the corner sticks stretched apart. Fig. 63 represents a part of one of the braces. String and glue are used back of the notch to prevent splitting when the strain is put on them up in the air. The braces are made just a little long so that they bow a little when in place, and this stretches the cover tight.
Figs. 60, 61.
Figs. 62, 63.
Figs. 64, 65, 66.
A word about getting the cover on the corner sticks may be in order. The distance around the kite is determined, and a band is made the right width and the right length to reach around when the braces are sprung to place. Stretch the band out like a rubber band, Fig. 64, and put in two corner sticks at a and b that have previously been glued on one edge, and allowed to partially dry until it is what is called tacky. Now the band at the other end should also be glued in place when the progress will show as in Fig. 65. Remember the glue is only on the outer edge of the sticks. Now find and mark the exact center between the sticks glued in place and fold to these two lines, and glue in the other two sticks in a similar manner. The progress made will be as shown in Fig. 66. When the glue is thoroly dry, the kite is ready for the braces and for flying. The braces might be tied together where they cross each other. A good size for the corner sticks is 3/16"x1/2"x36" with bands 10" wide and 64" long, plus 1" additional for the hem. This will give 16" for each side. Enough will be needed additional in width so as to allow a 1/2" hem for each side. Each band then will require a strip of cloth or paper 11" wide and 65" long. With paper bands the 1/2" should be folded over and a string should be glued inside to strengthen the edge. The braces should be 1/8"x1/2"x217/8" from the bottom of one notch to the bottom of the other, see Fig. 62.