GWTW Forum

Kites! Kites! Kites! => Sport Kites => Topic started by: tpatter on January 31, 2010, 10:36 PM



Title: Light Kits
Post by: tpatter on January 31, 2010, 10:36 PM
Anyone have some recommendations on adding lights to dual lines for night flying?

Ideally, I would like them to be small/light.  Anyone who has experience doing this - can you see the kite (or lights) well enough to do tricks?


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: Kantaxel on January 31, 2010, 10:51 PM
We've got a couple of light sets Tom that have three lights mostly mounted on the upper spreader and lower spreaders toward the outside.  However they use two AA batteries that we bungie to the CT and they drastically change the weight of the kite....................You can see the kite very well, however......I have heard that there are LEDs out now that give out more light with less power, hence less weight in batteries, but have no clue where to get them nor any idea on price.


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: tpatter on January 31, 2010, 10:55 PM
Thanks Jim - I did a search, but couldn't find much.  I'm looking forward to trying this stuff out.


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: John Welden on January 31, 2010, 11:25 PM
Jim,


Kite lights sounds like a really cool idea but they're not much fun.  You can't do much in the way of tricks and even if you do, they don't look like anything so it's pointless. So that leave precision night flying.  :-\  Not something that is much fun in my opinion.  Maybe at a kite festival just for kicks with a couple friends.


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: indigo_wolf on February 01, 2010, 01:00 AM
Phosphorescent tape is about a $1 a foot.  A 10 minute charge will burn brightly for about an hour and then at reduced output for another 5 hours.  Minimal weight, CoG penalty.

ATB,
Sam


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: obijuankenobe on February 01, 2010, 02:39 AM
Relective tape in key locations and a good headlight in my experience are better than any lights I have tried, or seen tried.  The only other success I have seen was with these thin glow sticks wrapped on the spars.  That worked, but the result was still not perfect. 

obi


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: Hadge on February 01, 2010, 02:42 AM
Check this video out - WOW!

Stunt kite at Night (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fuLH58sSEaQ ;D)


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: thief on February 01, 2010, 04:40 AM
EL wire........great stuff to work with.....you can have the wire trailing off the edges if you want...or cut the wire to the exact length and incorporate it into the kite frame.....

there used to be  the "fly by night" light system that had 5 leds down each leading edge.....worked great....a bit of weight....but still worked great......not certain if anyone has them anymore though.....

i have heard of people just cutting open light sticks and pouring the liquid on the kite....works well..messy.....not much weight.....potential staining....

there are lots of smaller LED keychain lights that i am certain with a bit of ingenuity you can make work just fine for you!


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: benjai on February 01, 2010, 04:51 AM
I did this (below) many moons ago (before I knew any better) with EL wire. Looked OK, but i never flew it because the extra weight would have made it impossible. I think Obi's suggestion is best and in fact Kitehouse put reflective tape in a limited edition of the cosmic a year or so ago...

KiteLights (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HxslfsNQ6oU#normal)



Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: Kantaxel on February 01, 2010, 07:32 AM
Jim,


Kite lights sounds like a really cool idea but they're not much fun.  You can't do much in the way of tricks and even if you do, they don't look like anything so it's pointless. So that leave precision night flying.  :-\  Not something that is much fun in my opinion.  Maybe at a kite festival just for kicks with a couple friends.

Agreed ;) 8)


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: fidelio on February 01, 2010, 03:40 PM
the issue we've found here with lights is once you start tricking, you lose perspective and orientation of the kite easily.

the tc ghost with the reflective tape seems ingenious to me but have yet to see one in person.
so far, we've found the best solution to just be certain colors of kite which make the most of the ambient light. full moons don't hurt either.

something suuuuper easy which you can experiment with very cheaply is the idea of an led throwie. it's basically an led, nickel sized lithium battery, and a magnet. (see video below)

i'll post a link later to what i made but at the moment something between me and youtube is preventing anything but a tiny trickle of an upload, so it's taking a loooong time.

Making an LED Throwie (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YjTP_T-wR9w#normal)


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: kiten00b on February 01, 2010, 03:56 PM
dollar stores usually have lots of different LEDs suitable for night flying


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: mikenchico on February 01, 2010, 04:16 PM
I was one of those who cut open light sticks and dumped them on the kite. You don't do this to a kite you are keeping. Don't bother anymore though, the chemistry has been changed and once the glo-goop hits the air it looses 90% of it's glow, used to take an hour or so to do that.

With the proliferation of LED flashlights for a few dollars there's a ready supply now of cheap parts to build your own, get one or more of the compact ones that use 1 battery, and some micro wire at your hobby shop. 8-10 of those bulbs should burn for an hour off a AAA battery.

I picked up a bunch of packs of the glow wire at the $1 store but never tried it, the driver unit and batteries would've been a lot of weight.

Did you know that the fluorescent colors of ripstops we use glow under UV light? Some whites do also. Did you know you can get a UV wavelength LED that runs for hours off 3 button batteries? Did you know that little LED puts out enough to light up a 600 cubic foot + area? I've known about the fabric for years, I've had that light source for a few years, but haven't built the kite yet  :(



Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: fidelio on February 01, 2010, 08:02 PM
here's what i had made.
LED Kite Lights (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OeksdguMYnM#normal)


Title: Re: Light Kits
Post by: obijuankenobe on February 02, 2010, 04:13 AM
I ordered some small LEDs with magnet backs off eBay a long time ago.  These worked, in the sense that they produced light on the kite.  Landings make them fall off.  And once they fall off, you are out one magnet.  Needless to say...eventually...you are stuck with a handful of watch batteries that blink.

obi