Initiation kite
for 4 lines steering

Sledmatiste C3 Newspaper photography
Sledmatiste C3 Newspaper
If you have two hours of spare-time, you can use them to build the Sledmatiste C3, the multi-sled Venet with 3 arches to be flow with 4 lines. This very simple kite can be assembled more or less quickly, more or less cheaply, and can be more or less light depending on the materials you will use.
Compared to the "4 lines standard" Revolution, the flight of the Sledmatiste C3 is sound within a fairly wide wind window but you will avoid to fly it at the edge of it, the sail having then a tendency to collapse. Yet, you may be able to reopen it by pulling sharply on the lines. It has a very stable flight and moves slowly, always at the same speed. It stops, corkscrews and flies backward. On the other hand, don't attempt to fly bacward while going upward (you will experience sudden collapsing except if you add an extra optional spar to the rear). Also, don't attempt the lateral slide (impossible). Its wind scale is somewhat wide. Are you convinced ? Well then, let's begin the assembly.
The sail is made out of Tyvek which can be found in specialized shops, but you may also use heavy plastic trash bags or Spinakker Nylon. begin by drawing the shapes on the sail, then cut. Reinforce the edges of Tyvek with Scotch tape.
The spines are made of carbon tubing Ø5,5 or 5 mm and 82,5 cm long, easily obtained from our shopkeeper, but you can also use bamboo, fiberglass tubing or ramin. You will Scotch them at their tips and to the backside of the sail and also at the rear bridles attachment points for the central spines.
The intermediary and lateral stiffeners preventing the closing of the leading,edge of the arches and of the keels are made "skewer" bamboo sticks which can be obtained from your nearest butcher shop. You can also use plain carbon or fiberglass rods Ø2 or Ø3 mm. You will Scotch them at their tips on the backside of the sail.
The bridles attachment points are strengthened with reinforced tape. The bridles are somewhat light, if you have leftover lengths of Topline (or Dyneema), that will be perfect. Use a thick needle to pass the bridles through the sail and to knot them. The central bridles go around the spines.
The transversal spar preventing the closing of the lateral arches is made of plain carbon rod Ø3 mm or fiberglass rod Ø3 mm or even carbon rod Ø2 mm. Split bamboo can also be used. Onthe flying field, you assemble its ends to the front of the lateral spars using rubber bands or a piece of Scotch tape.
Do you have the handles and the lines ? No, well then, this paragraph is for you. Let me say that their construction will take you more time that it will take for the assembly of the Sledmatiste. The handles, inexpensive but comfortable are detailled on the plan. One receive the two left lines and the other the right ones. the four lines are made of 70 Kg Topline or Dyneema (strong enough to last), or else 45 Kg, and 22,5 meter long each. It is important that they all have precisely the same length ! Fix firmly one of their ends, unroll them wholly, stretch the lines with equal force (use a spring scale or a pulley and a weight or invest in a "Equalizer"), then mark them at the same spot.
Have you already flow a 4 lines kite ? No, then concentrate your attention on the following lines. You have both handles in your hands. Pull on the two upper lines and simultaneously with your wrists, pivot upward the lower part of the handles, you are opening the "throttle", the kite moves upward. Then, slowly pull on the lower lines and the kite stops. pull a little more on the lower lines and the kite moves bacward. Pull once again on the gas pedal, then pull on the right lower line, you are slowing down the right wing of your kite which begins to turn right. Thanks God, it works the same way to the left !
Before I let you try your new kite, I would like to give an explanation to the name Venet. I wouldn't have succeded in conceiving the Sledmatiste without the experiments of Sylvien VENET about the Sled.
Sledmatiste C5 photography
C5 : pentaptich about BMPT painting
(Buren, Mosset, Parmentier, Toroni)
As soon as you will be an experienced "4 lines" pilot, you will add the optional transversal spar to the rear of the kite in order to alow you to control the backward flight of the kite or better, to start the construction of the C5 version (french plan), designed for very light winds.