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Author Topic: Bzar 2011 build thread  (Read 27885 times)
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sugarbaker
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« on: April 10, 2011, 11:26 AM »

Wanted to post a link to Werner's B'zar website.  As I have lost some of the webspace where many of the pictures in this thread are stored, many of the pics in this thread are broken links.  Lucky thing is that the entire thread was saved at this link on Werner's site http://www.tweelijners.com/werner/Sugarbaker.html

Please reference the linked html site and feel free to ask any questions here if you are in the midst of a b'zar build. 



I thought I might start a thread documenting the build of the recently released (today!) B'zar 2011.  Throughout the process, I will add pictures and descriptions of the steps taken to complete the kite... including mistakes and corrections.  Hopefully an enjoyable thread to follow, but may take a while to complete. 

For the first entry, here are pics of the plans (provided by Werner and Positivo... thanks for their hard work in developing the kite and making the plans available to the public domain) and my chosen color scheme. 







it's hard to see at the posted resolution, but note the seam overlaps for the spine and both seams running laterally away from the spine... these have tapered/non-uniform overlapping edges creating a billow in the sail once completed.  This is unique to this kite and one of the major additions to the 2011 model... should be an interesting trick to prep and sew, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there. 

More to come.
« Last Edit: December 12, 2012, 03:02 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
sugarbaker
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« Reply #1 on: April 10, 2011, 10:23 PM »

some of the tools I'll be using to complete this project...

my trusty Bernina 1630 sewing machine... excellent machine I purchased this year (used).  It feeds evenly and will sew through a yard stick so meets my needs for now.  The only reason I would replace it (other than malfunction) would be to have a wider working space to the right of the needle... and possibly for a dual feed system such as Pfaff's IDT



a Rikon bandsaw for cutting templates.



various cutting utensils including soldering iron for hot cutting



dremel, heavy duty hole punch and pliers (don't use the pliers much, but occasionally they come in handy)



There are other items used throughout the process such as a lighter, straight edges, regular office supplies like pencils, tape and glue... but we certainly don't need pics of those things at this point. (we may not even need the pics already posted, but I have them anyway)
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 06:05 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
DecSkybirds
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« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2011, 03:21 PM »

Very cool! And good luck!
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sugarbaker
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« Reply #3 on: April 16, 2011, 03:08 PM »

For anyone building along with my thread (some have emailed/ P.M.ed me), there are some changes and clarification to the plans.  From Werner's site, the sail layout remains the same.  Please note that if you have downloaded the panel templates before today you need to download the new file that is now online at the site (old/incorrect file has been removed).  Positivo (and others) let me know last night that the original file was incorrect in regards to some of the panel dimensions.

I've also had some clarifying conversations in regards to how the sail should appear when sewn.  Note that the individual halves will NOT lay flat when sewn together.  As I mentioned in my first post, there is a billow in the sail that will cause a concave curve (concave to the flyer) when aloft.  In the sail layout file, the solid lines of each panel is where you should be laying them out and sewing.  The dotted lines represent where the panels would overlap if each individual panel were laying flat.

I hope this makes some things more clear.  Stay tuned for more posts this week.  I'll be cutting my own MDF templates and finally getting down to some hot cutting of my PC31.  Pictures to come.  For those of you that require visual bliss, please enjoy this pic of 3M spray adhesive I will use to stick paper templates to the MDF prior to cutting...



while making wood templates may be overkill, if you ever plan on making a second or third B'zar, it's nice to have more durable pieces.  Also, if you choose to use 1/8" MDF as I have, note that one side is usually slightly smoother than the other, and this is the side you should stick your paper templates to for better adhesion (if using 3M spray adhesive).
« Last Edit: October 04, 2011, 06:04 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
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« Reply #4 on: April 16, 2011, 04:27 PM »

while we're waiting for me to cut material for the B'zar 2011 build, I will post some pics from my 2010 version build.  I will offer some brief description for each picture and some explanation of technique.  Please also note that the B'zar 2011 (and 2010) are not great choices for a first time build.  Kites with curved seams and complex panel designs should be reserved for those that have already made the mistakes of their first kite build.  This thread is intended more as a documentation of my own build process, and may serve as a loose guide to building your own kite.  That being said, please feel free to email any specific questions that I do not address in the body of the thread. 

Below is a picture showing why there are marks in the middle of the panel templates... their purpose is to indicate the direction of the bias.  This is considered by the designer for aesthetics, but more importantly to minimize stretch in certain areas such as the leading and trailing edges.  Take care when cutting your own panels to line up the bias with the templates so as to match the designer's plans, but also to ensure symmetry between halves.


remembering that these pics are from a build of the 2010 B'zar, technique remains the same.  When cutting Mylar material that will go on each half of the kite, it should be cut so that the bias, and texture of the material will be symmetrical (if you are as OCD as I am).  Mylar is smooth on one side and rough on the other, so when you cut mylar panels, cut one... then turn the fabric over and cut the other so that the texture will be identical from one half to the other.


I'll be posting pictures of how I lay out and glue the sail later.  Below is a picture of something I do for all of my kites... I get some scrap material (in this case a couple of pieces of polyester ripstop that is not PC31, but stuff I had laying around) and I sew some sample stitches and indicate the width and length settings on the machine as well as checking my tension settings.  You'll know you have proper tension when you can't tell the difference between the top and bottom of the stitch, as noted in the second and third photos of my 2010 B'zar's trailing edge.


« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 08:23 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
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« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2011, 11:49 AM »

Before I get to working on the kite today, I wanted to throw out some thoughts on the two options builders have when it comes to layout and plan printing.  On Werner's website, he now has A0 - full size print (needs 36" wide printing in USA), and A4 format (slightly longer than 8 1/2"x11 so read on).  There are benefits to both, but my feeling is that if you have the means, A0 is the way to go.

First lets look at the A4 option... this is a plan that has been cut up into 37 pages.  (This includes a title page and two templates showing how to lay out your plan so all the lines come together).  The idea is that you can print this at home and tape it together to form a sail layout plan and templates for the individual panels.  I have done this exactly one time on a previous kite build... things to be aware... or beware... especially if you live in a country that uses Letter Size paper (8.5"x11).  A4 is longer than letter size paper (and slightly narrower).  So, if you opt to go this way due the convenience of printing on your standard home printer, make sure you can either get hold of actual A4 size paper OR legal size pages (8.5"x14).  The key here is that you absolutely have to print at 100%.  If you forget to uncheck that "Scale to Fit" box in your printer setup, you will end up with a kite that was smaller than intended, and you probably won't realize until you cut your expensive carbon tubes and realize your sail is considerably smaller than your frame. (Frame can then be recut to match your beautiful sail, but it will never fly the way the designer intended... this goes for any kite).  The other downside, and this is a big one, is that if you are not absolutely perfect in your ability to tape these plan pages together, your kite will be shaped differently than designed.  For some kites this would only be a minor variance and not as critical.  For the B'zar 2011, because of the number of curved seams and odd panel connections (for the earlier mentioned billowed sail), a poorly taped up plan could ruin your project at a very early stage.

Now lets look at A0.  Yes, I understand that very few of us have a 36" wide printer in our homes.  If you have one, go that way.  If not, go to your local FedEx Office/Kinkos and pay a nominal fee to have full size plans and templates printed.  You will avoid all of the previously listed problems with the tape-it-together method.  Not to mention, think of all the time you will save by not having to sort the pages and tape them up as carefully as you can!  "But printing big costs big!" you may think... well, if you look at the cost of inkjet printing (approximately $.23 per page) you are going to spend roughly $8.50 to print at home.  My local Fedex/Kinkos charged me $14.32 to print out my plan and layout... thats only 6 dollars more than if I had printed on my own printer. And I have the peace of mind that comes without having to take an hour to tape all of my plans together.  So, think about your options and what you're willing to commit to.  A4 can be used successfully, but I always opt for the precision and simplicity of printing full pages (A0). 

Now for visual bliss... (pic of me flying an attractive Prism Hypnotist on a beautiful day here in Seattle). 


« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 08:24 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
Kantaxel
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« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2011, 05:02 PM »

Stephen

How is it you can stand on such a heavy incline without falling over? Wink
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« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2011, 05:02 PM »

Most of my kite building happens here; it is small, so I do my best to keep it organized (being organized will help you avoid mistakes).  I recommend having a dedicated place to build kites, as I have tried using my living/dining rooms before and discovered that I was no longer using them for dining or living... ever. In my work space, I have a stainless table top (safe to hot cut on), I have shelves that hold fabric and parts, and obviously a place for my sewing machine.  Good lighting is a must and it doesn't hurt to have a glass table top that can be used as a light table (lit from beneath).  Currently my light table is in another room and will not be used for this project as we will use the project board to lay out our sail (if not using the project board, the light table makes it easy to see seam overlaps).



So, we've talked about printing.  I always opt to print the full size plan (A0 format).  With plans in hand, I mount the sail layout on a large piece of hard board.



I cut out the individual panels (rough cut... not exactly on the lines, as they will be cut on a bandsaw after being mounted to their own MDF material for cutting).



Once cut out, all of the panels will fit onto a 2'x4' sheet of 1/8" MDF... it may just take some time to arrange the panels in a manor that will fit. once you've figured out how to get all the panels on the template material, spray the paper with the previously pictured spray adhesive (I recommend doing this outside, as everything you spray will be sticky and the fumes are strong).  Remember to stick the paper to the smooth side of the MDF. below is proof that it can be done.



next thread will be geared towards those that want to cut their templates from wood.  if you only intend to make one B'zar, you can cut your templates out of poster-board (which will hold up to hot cutting once or twice).  Another option for those that want to make more than one B'zar is to use poster-board, but finish the edges with aluminum tape that can be purchased at your local hardware store.






« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 08:26 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
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« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2011, 10:18 PM »

My choice when starting a kite I anticipate building more than one of, is to make templates out of MDF or masonite hardboard.  I use a band saw to cut these templates.  This is not a thread about wood working, but I wanted to say some things about using power tools.  At this point in this documentation, I should say (so it's been said) that I am not responsible for your safety during this project... funny thing to say when referring to kite building, but I think it should be understood that this step and others can cause injury if you aren't prepared appropriately.  With a power saw especially, please don't wear loose/baggy clothes that could catch in the blade.  Furthermore, eye and ear protection should be used and you should work in an area that allows ample space to move and has minimal distraction.  Taking your eye off of a moving blade can result in the loss of an appendage.  Be smart. Moving on.

My first step in cutting these templates is to cut out each shape in a rough manor... leaving an inch or so margin around the lines of each panel. This way, when you're making precision cuts, you have the least amount of material possible to manipulate through the saw.



As I use a 10" bandsaw, many of my cuts are made with the bulk of the material to the right of the blade as the larger panels will not fit in the space to the left of the blade. Also note that I cut as close to the line without going over it as I can... the kerf of the blade takes about 1/16th of material off so if you cut directly on the lines, your panel may end up smaller than you want. 



Here you can see a panel after having cut it as accurately as possible.  Some sanding will still be required as the edges are fairly rough.  100 grit sand paper will take off a lot of material, so only gentle sanding is needed to smooth the edges to their final stage.

« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 08:27 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
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« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2011, 03:46 AM »

Great documentation!!!!  Mind if i copy this over into the kite builder forum???   Most of the guys over there are not sport kite makers but would love to see this!
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« Reply #10 on: April 22, 2011, 03:01 PM »

Great documentation!!!!  Mind if i copy this over into the kite builder forum???   Most of the guys over there are not sport kite makers but would love to see this!



I don't mind at all.  Please use it wherever it is beneficial.
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sugarbaker
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« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2011, 09:07 AM »

So lets assume templates have been cut... out of wood or poster-board, whatever your choice of template is. Now is the time to start cutting ripstop.  This is a little late, but I should mention that your choice of color layout can mean an easy or difficult time when you prep your sail to be sewn. This will be relevant soon in this build and I wanted to point out that the color layout I've chosen (see first post in this thread) will be difficult due to the asymmetrical halves.

When sewing a sail, panels will overlap.  Dark colors should be laid up towards the front of the kite... in front of light colors.  As we only have a full size layout for the right half, when you get ready to lay up the left side some logical thinking will mean we have to reverse this mentality so that when opened up the rule will still hold true... dark colors in front of light colors.  To make sense of the posts coming up I'm going to give a pic with panels labeled alphabetically; left and right (see pic).



ok... now that I've made it confusing, I'll throw out a quick recommendation.  Have I mentioned that this should not be the first kite you build?  And if you're diving into this kite as a second attempt I would consider making a symmetrical color layout to avoid confusion with the previous rules about colors.  If you think it's confusing to reverse your seam overlaps, it's going to be more confusing when I explain that because of my checkerboard type color scheme, a single seam could have varying overlap... and that we'll set up the seams that don't affect the billow of the sail before we attach those that do affect the billow;  If you're not confused yet, keep on reading.

My next post (late in the week) will be about hot cutting.  I'll have some pictures, but it's hard to take a picture of yourself hot cutting... and frankly I don't want to risk burning myself.  I will however direct you to this youtube video that is a great demonstration of efficient hot cutting of ripstop (during the construction of C. Derefat's vortex I believe).

http://youtu.be/--9B4_hVw1M

Alright... more to come.
« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 08:28 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
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« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2011, 12:52 AM »

ok, we've discussed ideas about why simple color designs will be easier due to seam overlap... and I'm choosing to ignore my own advice and go with a slightly more complex checkered pattern.  Regardless, the technique for cutting sail panels is the same. 

First, I want to step back to our templates for a second.  I mentioned rough edges on my MDF that would require some light sanding with 100 grit paper.  Here are some close ups of before and after sanding.  Notice there is not much difference, and the loose feather like material on the rough edge would probably just burn off when you hot cut with the template, but your fabric will be nicer if the edges are smooth prior to cutting.




when you are setting up to hot cut, make sure you have a surface that is safe to use... glass, metal or utility wood surface (wood will burn during this process, so don't use your mother's dining room table). I use a metal table top. 

when laying out your fabric, it is important to avoid any wrinkles; lay it out as flat as you can.  Polyester is quite prone to static buildup, and this actually helps it "stick" to the surface and keep it flat.  You shouldn't have any trouble at all when preparing to cut.  See pics... first one is what to avoid, second one is what you want when prepping to cut. (take note of the soldering iron at the top of these pics. I know it looks like the wire is laying on the tip of the iron, but it isn't.  The iron isn't even on, as this is a fire hazard.  you should only have the iron on when you are going to use it)




Now, remember those lines on the template that I mentioned were for properly orienting the bias of the material? you want to lay your templates out prior to cutting and make a plan in your head for how you get the most out of your fabric when the templates are lined up properly... first pic is hard to make out (pic earlier in thread of 2010 B'zar may give better idea of fabric bias) but it represents how the fabric should line up with the template.  second pic is multiple pieces layout out prior to cutting so as to minimize waste.




ok... now we're ready to cut.


« Last Edit: September 13, 2011, 08:30 PM by sugarbaker » Logged
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« Reply #13 on: April 25, 2011, 03:12 AM »

we have crossed over
http://www.kitebuilder.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=9894&start=0&postdays=0&postorder=asc&highlight=
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« Reply #14 on: April 25, 2011, 04:54 AM »

excellent!  thanks for going through the effort to maintain the thread in both places.  I'll be posting more here on GWTW later this week.
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