I just finished building an NPW Teega. It's basically an NPW 9b with some different twists.
It was quite an experience, because the last time I was making kites was over 10 yrs ago, back when I lived in Holland. (now my home is Springfield, OR)
This is the result:
Made with the instructions on this site: http://freedom2000.free.fr/NPW_Teega_plans_eng.html
Notes on the graphics: in Holland there is a comic called `Kuifje`, `Tin Tin` in English. This is the rocket they use to go to the moon. I've always been interested in Japan so I included some kanji characters on the kite. `Above the clouds` on the left, and `physical strength` on the right side.
I had never done any applique before, so it was a learning experience. After many mistakes I did finish the kite and it was a very rewarding experience. Now I remember why I liked making them! It's really cool to take these sheets of crispy fabric and a roll of line, and make a flying object out of it.
Some mistakes I made:
- Picked the wrong corner on one of the edge sails to do the graphic on... had to re-cut and re-do the full panel. But! I used the `wrong` panel to make a bag
- Stitched the applique on the wrong side of the sail
- When removing the seam for mistake #2, poked through the sail with my seamripper.
- Used the double-sided table where I shouldn't have. That residue does *not* want to come off!
- Made double the amount of primary bridle I needed (apparently a line doubled over has two ends... duh)
- Various `oopsies` measuring, sewing and cutting.
Some things I learned:
- I LOVE our $40 Gingher scissors. Used these for cutting sail, relief cutting etc.
- I LOVE the add-on walking foot we got for our Janome sewing machine. It really helps keep the fabric in line
- A bridle board is great. And cascade bridle is pretty easy to do.
- The `Peter Lynn bridle knot` is a great solution to attach the bridle to the sail. It comes out easy and can be adjusted easily to the mm.
- Even though our sewing machine is great, I wish it had a `max speed` setting and a `needle down` feature. Would be good to have.
- French seams are nice, but take some practice... phew!
- Does anyone else get mid-back pain when making kites? Man o man did I hurt.
- Yes measure twice, cut once.
Comments on the Teega:
I have a collection of NPW 5 kites. I've been using these for a long time and I like them a lot. They're virtually indestructible, pull like a truck and are a cheap buggy kite. However since those first NPWs I saw that some new designs had come out. I thought I'd try a NPW 9b but then saw the Teega. It had some interesting features:
- No side darts
- Leach lines
- Rounded wings on the trailing edge
On the few flights I've had with it, I've come away with mixed feelings. It does feel more tight in the sky, but also very touchy and nervous. Flying it back to back with an NPW 5, the NPW 5 is more relaxed yet pulls about as hard. Also the nose appears to be very prone to collapse on the Teega. The Teega is more sensitive to brake line input as well. If I relax the brake, the nose folds. If I fly with more brake the nose is OK, but it loses its forward drive. It does appear to be more lifty than an NPW 5, which I like. I've played around with the leech line with mixed results... I'm writing an e-mail to the creator of the Teega to ask for his input as well.
Overall, I really enjoyed making another kite... I love the process and can't wait to make some more! Perhaps a new-style trick kite (my Gemini is old school at this point), or a rev-look-a-like, or maybe a foil like a Gual or something.
Thanks for reading, any comments/ suggestions are welcome!