Purview the gorgeous LVKS Projects

The Logo - January 1992


In January of 1993 a committee was formed to create a logo for our newly formed club. Gail Erich, Phyllis Finger and Tony Reiser got together and came up with the design.


Gail made the first logo of ripstop nylon which was put on a rokkaku made by Andy Gelinas.


This is how the logo looks now on the 4' and 6' roks.


A few words about our club logo: by Gail Erich '92

 In order to catch the spirit of all our members, many aspects of kite flying have been included. The most obvious is the keystone shape, identifying the state of Pennsylvania (without having to spell it out). A six pack of rainbow-hued stunt kites signify two views: First, the rainbow soaring kites link with the environment and nature and show just how necessary cooperation with both wind and weather are for any successful fly. Secondly, the stunt kites highlight those who thrive on the challenge and competitiveness of the sport, but also included is a traditional tail for all the single-line enthusiasts. 

Drogue Summer 1992


Now That’s a Drogue!

How many of you have seen this drogue flying in the Lehigh Valley? Answer.. All who have been to club events lately.

It was designed by Kite Studio and built by club members Steve Ferrel, Tony and Jim Reiser, Guy Gray, Bob James, and Tony Ferrel.

How many of you have seen this drogue flying in the Lehigh Valley? Answer.. All who have been to clu

The initial idea was to make a banner to fly off a large lifting kite. We wanted the letters to be fairly large so it could be read from a distance. The words also had to make sense to people unfamiliar with our club, so we could not use abbreviations.

We soon discovered that Lehigh Valley Kite Society, Pennsylvania had too darn many letters for a banner. The next idea was to design something that created some lift of its own, and would remain inflated so as to keep the letters readable at all times. The solution was a nineteen foot drogue! The front diameter is approximately 4.5 feet; the rear diameter approximately 1.5 feet.


The drogue represents 38 man hours of cutting the 3/4 ounce ripstop body; cutting, gluing, and sewing 58 letters; sewing the edging; installing the semi-rigid tubing for the leading edge frame; and then cutting, knotting, and installing the eight point adjustable bridle.

It was a great learning experience for all involved. Because of the confidence achieved from the project we have a lot of homemade kites and feather flags flying the fields of the Lehigh Valley. Thanks again to all involved and for the support of the LVKS for the project!

 Tony & Steve Ferrel, 

Rokkakus and Banner flag - Winter 1992


 On August 13, 1992, it began! Tony & Steve Ferrel, Tony Reiser, Ron Dunn, Gail Erich and Paul Keeler met at Kite Studio and started on the club's 4' and 6' rokkakus and 16' banner/feather flag. After a few hours of planning, drawing, erasing, re-drawing and cutting, there emerged a pattern for a 4' rokkaku. On the 19th, the paper pattern was transferred to ripstop and then pasted to the main body. Tony Reiser took the pieces home and sewed them together. 


 At the 3rd meeting of the group on the 26th, Tony had the pieces almost all together. The group started thinking again (not so hard this time) and enlarged the 4' pattern to a 6' pattern. Tony Ferrel sewed the 2 halves of the skin together. With the help of Jim Reiser, the pieces were cut and pasted to the skin. Again, Tony Reiser took the pieces to sew. 


 Also at the 3rd meeting, a plan was drawn up for a 16' banner/feather flag. Paul took the plans for the flag to cut and assemble. Tony Reiser and Gail helped at Burlesque Kites with the assembly. 


 After the kites were sewn by Tony Reiser, Tony and Steve Ferrel added the finishing touches, pockets, rods, bridling, etc. On September 10, 1992, the 4' rokkaku could be seen in the skies above Luther Crest (battling it out with a hawk) and by the 14th (LVKS meeting) the 6' was complete all but bridling. The flag was mostly done and completed on the 15th. 

 The Club now has a 7 1/2' rokkaku (made by Andy Gelinas at the Maryland Kite Society Weekend Retreat Feb. 14-17, 1992), a 6' rokkaku, a 4' rokkaku, a Banner/Feather Flag and a kite bag (donated by Burlesque Kites and embroidered by Steve Ferrel). This is a good start! Thanks to all who helped with their time and knowledge. 


 This was the first club Rokkaku made in Feb. 1992. The 7.5' tall Rok was made by Andy Gelinas. The center logo was made by Gail Erich. 

 Paul Keeler

5' Feather Flags Spring 1993


 We needed some type of ground display to be like other clubs and groups. However we wanted to have more than the others. A simple design was created where the top section has a keystone, the bottom section has LVKS and the center section has a design by the club member who made the flag. 


 The flags were first displayed at The Smithsonian Kite Festival - March 27, 1993. We had 25 flags at that time. Becouse we set them up everywhere we go they get used a lot, wear out and need to be repaired or replaced every couple of years. We now average around 45 flags, along with all the other stuff we set up. 

Seven Sisters Kite Winter 1993


 At Maryland Kite Society's Winter Retreat 1993 one of the projects was a flat six sided kite. When seven of the kites are connected together the larger kite is then called a "Seven Sister" kite. So seven if us got together and each made a single kite to be put together. 


We decided to enter the kite at Smithsonian Kite Festival, but first a tail was needed to stabilize the kite.

The matching tail was made at the clubhouse. The photos are the launching and flight of the kite on

 The matching tail was made at the clubhouse. The photos are the launching and flight of the kite on the mall in Washington DC. We didn't win but we had a good time. 

LVKS "Secret" Club Project Summer 1994


The secret club project was a HUGE success. During the past few months approximately 20 club members created a 21 foot by 12 foot flag. 


 The flag consisted of panels that were 32 inches square. Each member made their own panels and then we got all of them together and put borders around each of the panels to connect them. It took about 17 hours and a lot of sewing by numerous members. 


 The flag consisted of panels that were 32 inches square. Each member made their own panels and then we got all of them together and put borders around each of the panels to connect them. 


 It took about 17 hours and a lot of sewing by numerous members. 


 The first official launching of the flag was Memorial Weekend at the ECSKC Festival in Wildwood, NJ. Thanks to Scott E. Spencer for his help in securing it to the kite line. 


 It flew very nicely under a 252 Flowform. 


The flag was designed to add more panels, so those LVKS members who would like to add a panel on can do so. 


 Thanks to all who helped to make this project a success: Andy, Paul, Dean, Joyce, Tony F., Gail, Steve, Jim, Tony, Sr., Tony, Jr., Ron, Tom, Glenn, Marty, Juan, Carmen, Ken, Matthew. Keep those minds thinking for another to do in the future. 

 Donna Grable 

Kimono Committee Creations Conquest Convention Winter 1994


 This project originally got off the ground at the May club meeting when the members voted to okay moneys to create 24 Kimonos. Ron Dunn and I searched several craft stores for an appropriate pattern as did Joyce and Cliff Quinn down in their neck of the woods. Then after a tasty working lunch, Joyce and I searched for dazzling materials to make the prototype. With Joyce working a lot behind the scenes. The prototype was modeled at the club meeting and received an enthusiastic response. 



So the search began to accumulate 91 yards of red jacquard (synthetic silk) and 66 yards of black patterned jacquard. So by late July enough was amassed to begin our massive undertaking.

At the first get-together in August, we cut out pieces and pieces and more pieces. But a great group was there to help. Newcomer Nancy Fried, Joyce Quinn, Joyce Gordon, Paul Keeler, Tony Reiser Sr. and myself. Well, I thought ripstop was the slipperiest material to work with, but I was wrong. We met for two weeks just to cut and pin Kimonos.


 Then we sewed for three weeks, and the guys did a super job sewing. I believe as a group we could tackle just about anything now. Again, Joyce Quinn took home and pressed all the Kimonos. Some oriental type lettering was found and added the week before the AKA Convention, so we knew we were just about ready. 

 Gail Erich 

Sunfest '95, Longest Homemade Tail Winter 1995


 The moment of truth had arrived, the Longest Homemade Tail competition was about to begin. The closely guarded secret had to be revealed, did we make it long enough? Maybe we should have added a little more. Well it's to late now, hours of cutting and sewing and umpteen number of yards of fabric went into the construction of "THE TAIL". 



Outside the Kite Loft we all looked at each other not wanting to be the first to reveal the length of our tails. You go first! No, you go first! Well somebody finally did and here was the line-up: Ed Spencer with 750 ft., the Dallmers with 1200 ft., the Gleckners with 1540 ft. and Lehigh Valley Kite Society with a whopping 1670 ft. Yes, that was one thousand six hundred and seventy feet!


 We started with a 12" diameter tube and gradually decreased it to 4". We sewed it inside out, boy does it take a long time to turn it right-side out.  Just before the actual flight for the competition we laid out the tail to its full length, 1670 ft. is a big number, but it gets even bigger when you start walking from one end to the other. You couldn't talk to each other, let alone see each other end to end. I took the responsibility of running from one end to the other to make sure everything was ready for the flight. All right I only ran one time, I walked the next few times and crawled the last time. 


 Everything was ready, Paul Keeler was anchoring the flow form, the rest of the club members were spread out along the length of the tail. We launched and it rose into the air, higher and higher, more of the tail leaving the ground, and then it happened. We ran out of beach, the end caught on one of the buildings and we lost about 300 ft. of the tail. 



The Gleckners also ran into the same problem, just a different building. Theirs was more forgiving and they managed to free their tail intact.

Our tail still looked impressive in the sky, but we had lost. To those members of the Quarter Mile Club, I thank you for all of your hard work. Maybe next year we may form the One Mile Club. You never know.


 (All the photos in this section were taken while we were test flying the tail. We never got it completely off the ground when testing it, the fields were to short.)

 Jim Reiser

The Continuous Tale Of "The Tail" - Spring 1996


As most of our members know, one of our special projects for Sunfest '95 was THE TAIL. It ended up with launch problems and building problems, the large Boardwalk type buildings. Despite all that, it won us second place.

Now this tail has another tale. Or maybe I should say three more tails. The usual Tuesday night group tackled this humungous monster again. We separated the front section of about 200 plus feet from the rest of the tail. Then where the tail started to taper down to the next smaller size, we ripped apart one side seam the entire length of these three 100 plus foot monsters. By this time they WERE MONSTERS, believe me. You felt like you were being attacked by these things while you were sitting or trying to move amongst these monster nylon tails.

In some places where the TAIL tangled with the Boardwalk buildings it got worn or ripped so we replaced these sections with, GUESS WHAT?, more excess tail. I wonder where we ever came up with any excess?

So now that I have succeeded in finding my way out of the maze, I found my trusty sewing machine right were I left it. Now the plan was to sew two of the three inch tails together for form a 6" diameter tubular tail. I think that was the problem in the first place, we made it a tubular tail. Have you ever had your arms swallowed up by a giant nylon tail while you were trying to turn it right side out?????

It looked something like this,,,???? I think????? One thing for certain, this is what it felt like while we were trying to sew the seams. You would think---nice, simple, straight seams. WRONG!

Now there is talk of re-waterproofing these things. I no longer think of them at tails, just monstrous nightmare things! You see we got the material at a real "bargain". Not a bargain? It was but we found out we needed to seal it in order to have it inflate. So several people were seen "painting" sealers on strips last summer. Oh what we go through for FUN!

Well, it is fun because our club people are a great bunch and we actually have FUN when we work on stuff!!

I hope we have seen the last of the ripping, cutting, re-sewing (you name it) of these monsters! Who knows though, someone may come up with a better use for them?!!! OH!! NO!!! HERE WE GO AGAIN WITH THE "CONTINUOUS TALE OF THE TAILS". Are they multiplying!

 Joyce Quinn 

Letters/Arch - Winter 1996


 Our first project was suggested by Joyce Quinn, which she saw in an old copy of the German magazine Drachen. It was Letter shaped kites. We began to make the letters "LVKS" to train together. However, the magazine not being in English was difficult to interpret and from what we could tell didn't have any bridling instructions. After several attempts to fly it failed, we tabled the project to move on to the next because time was running out. 


 We needed a new project to be completed for Sunfest and AKA Grand Nationals. Yes it was the Arch Train! We spent hours deciding how and what shape, size, etc. to make them. We wanted it to be different from the normal eddy kites that most trains are made of. We decided on keystone shaped red with a black border. 



We appliqued some as our LOGO, some with yellow letters "LEHIGH VALLEY KITE SOCIETY" and the rest are blank. As far as sizes, the largest center kite is 36" tall, there are several 24" tall and the rest are 18" tall. A total of 59 kites make up the 110' long train.

The arch train was finished up just in time for Sunfest, where it was seen for the first time. Unfortunately the day of judging it rained and the category was canceled. 


 Next up was AKA Grand Nationals where we took first place in co-operative.


We are now back on the letters, which after more unsuccessful attempts to fly, we are now in the process of appliqueing to roks. We will fly them trained behind each other (see the next project).

   Paul Keeler


Letter Rokkakus - Winter 1997



The year has kicked off with the resurrection of the letter kites coming back to life as four roks to be flown in a train. As of this writing they are nearing completion in the sewing department. They have turned out fairly attractive; red letters with black trim on a yellow background with black trim.


 The final phase will be bridling and flying, hopefully by the First Sunday Club Fly on March 2. Come on out! It's going to take several people to launch it and to just hold on to it! These will be entered at the Smithsonian if the following project isn't finished first. 

 Karl Imdorf

Flying Carpet - Spring/Summer 1997


 Yes, the Flying Carpet, Prototype One went for its test flight on June 22. It was a tad less than successful. On July 1, 1997 the second flight of the modified Flying Carpet took place on the railroad tracks behind Burlesque Kites. The flight proved to be encouraging, with good stability in the lifting body. 



I'm happy to report that some additional panels for the megabanner that will be the centerpiece of the flying carpet have come in. Hey, this thing can't be made to big. It might be very sunny at the National Convention and he who has the most shade wins. If you would like to contribute a panel just make it to fit within a 36"X36" square, but leave 3-4 inches on all sides for attachment to the banner.



With both major and minor bugs worked out after spectacular test flights, construction of the final version of the Flying Carpet/Megabanner commenced. Working from a written plan and detailed drawings, the production model of the lifting body was stitched together from jet black ripstop nylon. The lifter will be held taut for flying with over 36 feet of heavy duty spars. It has really turned out nicely and quality and attention to detail is evident throughout. That's the LVKS way!

The drive for additional panels for the Megabanner produced enough to increase both length and width. Many thanks to all members who participated. Your graphics are wonderful!



Should the club ever decide to increase the size, the lifter is easily upgradeable, and of course the banner can still be used on its own. The maiden flight took place on Saturday, August 30th, and its' success was duly noted.

This has been a project we can all be very proud of, for wherever we fly it, wherever we enter it in a competition, it will make a positive statement about LVKS.

I believe I will call it "The Spirit of the Lehigh Valley".

 Karl Imdorf


 The Flying Carpet flown at Sunfest 1998 at Ocean City, Maryland. 

Named after the designer Jim Reiser. Jim brought this project to the Club in February, 1999. The flags are 9' tall on 13' poles, we made 10 of them. It was a good quick project, only took a few hours (of course there was alot of us to help out). The longest thing was cutting all the streamers (4 per flag). 

Jim's Flags Spring 1999

 Named after the designer Jim Reiser. Jim brought this project to the Club in February, 1999. The flags are 9' tall on 13' poles, we made 10 of them. It was a good quick project, only took a few hours (of course there was alot of us to help out). The longest thing was cutting all the streamers (4 per flag). 

Conyne Deltas - Aug. 1999


(Solving a Problem)


Have you ever been flying kites as a festival or just any public place when you will hear the question, hey mister can I fly your kite?

I would like to let the youngster or oldster fly my kite but many of my kites have won awards and some have taken many hours of tedious work and expensive material to make. I am reluctant to let someone who is inexperienced use them. 

I made a proposal to the Club in August, 1999, that we should make several easy to assemble and fly kites. I decided that an eight foot Delta Conyne would be a good choice. So with some of our Club members, we made ten kites. We made five yellow and red and five black and red.  We have been loaning them to young and old alike. They not only save our kites but they give people their first experience at kite flying or perhaps bringing back the thrill once again at the wonderful world of kiting.  

 Tony Reiser 

The Wall-Fall 2001


 For a while now, several of us have talked about making side for the Eazy Ups. When we got the new Eazy Up (10'X10'), I decided it was time to do more than talk. I sat down and drew up a design on the computer of how I thought the "walls" should look. The size, 10' Wide and 6' Tall. A large Keystone logo in the center, with our web address across the top. This large of a surface would collect a lot of wind, so we used a white screening for the background surface. This way, some of the wind will go through, but enough wind is blocked to protect us from the high winds we sometimes get. Also, the walls give more shade to the area. The project was to be completed for Sunfest. The first step was to get the materials, enough to build two walls. The fabric is 1.5 oz. ripstop for the yellow border, black lettering and multi-colored logo. A heavy white screening was used for the rest. 



 Next the letters had to be cut out and glued to the background, then each letter had to be sewn down. The logo was then cut out and sewn together. Then the logo was sewn to the center of the screen. The web address section was added to the top and a border was added on the sides and bottom. Finally, tabs were attached to the top and both sides of the wall. Thirteen Bungees are used to attach the wall to the Eazy Up.

  Thanks to Glenn & Martin Bachman, Tony Reiser and Doug Logg for their help in making this project.  We were able to finish one wall for Sunfest. Not only does it look great, it actually functioned like we planned. The second wall was not completed for another two week after Sunfest. I’m looking forward to seeing both walls attached to the Eazy Up. 

Paul Keeler

Spinning Flags - Winter, Feb. 2004


 Late in 2003 while driving, I saw these spinning things outside of a store. I thought they would be neat to make in the club colors and put with our ground display. 


 I stopped and took a few photos so I had something to work with. 


 After playing with the idea for a while, I came up with a paper design and came to a club meeting in November with the project. I said I would make one to make sure the design changes I made would work. The design was accepted and we set 2 dates in February 2004 to get club members together and build 12 units. 


  To make 12 units we had to make 72 individual flags, so several of us cut out pieces before the workshop dates. Tony cut out the red sections of the flags, I cut the yellow sections.    Joyce, Andy & Sylvia cut all the letters and keystones. Tony also made the hubs which holds the thing together.  


  At the first workshop, Deidre, Sylvia, Andy and Tony began sticking the letters and keystones on to the red panels.   


  Joyce and I started to sew the panels together, Martie joined in when she and Glenn arrived. Saul cut the strips for the edge binding. Glenn, Ron and Sue folded the edge binding. We got most of the panels sewn together and even a few flags were edge binded.  


   At the 2nd workshop we completed (all but a few final touches) all 12 units. Tony put together the frames (tinker toys as Andy calls them).  


 Joyce, Sylvia, Andy and I completed the sewing. Then we all got to assemble the final units. 


 At March's First Sunday Fly, all 13 spinning flags were displayed for the first time. We didn't have all the other flags to set up with the new spinning flags but they look good all by themselves. 


 Next time you see LVKS at an event check them out. 

 Thanks to the members who were able to come to the workshop and help. 

Paul Keeler