Airpup

by Head Full of Air LLC

A kite-balloon offering quiet, long-term flight for videography, communications, and meteorology.

View all updates Jan 24, 2019

Towards A Better, Stronger Airpup

Backers!

This past month I have been visiting kite makers, acquiring materials, and preparing the design of Airpup’s production prototype. All this activity is adding up to make Airpup better looking and more durable.

Improving Airpup’s Fabrication

I just returned from the Oregon Kitemakers Retreat, where I have been refining my sewing skills and expanding my repertoire of fabrication techniques. In December, I visited Prism Kite Technology in Seattle to get some feedback on Airpup’s design. The skills and tips I have been picking up are going to make Airpup more durable and the speed up the fabrication process.

Design Tweaks

I have been making a list of small tweaks to Airpup that will improve usability and ease assembly. You can follow and comment on my development on Github, and I will make them the subject of my next update.

New Materials: Ripstop Polyester

The prototype Airpup’s wings were sewn from 0.75 oz ripstop nylon, but I am close to finalizing the purchase of high-quality 0.5 oz ripstop polyester for production Airpups.

While this fabric change only gives Airpup 2-3% more lift, there are several added benefits. Nylon can absorb moisture, increasing its weight and changing its shape in damp conditions. If the nylon is not fully dried, moisture can also damage Airpups’s urethane envelope during storage. Polyester is not only hydrophobic, it is also more UV resistant than nylon, increasing Airpup’s lifespan.

Since Icarex ceased commercial production, sourcing quality ultralight ripstop polyester has been difficult, and often expensive. I am excited to have found some.


$9,010 raised

of $8,000 goal

112% Funded! Order Below

Product Choices

$5

Support Airpup

Thanks for helping make Airpup a reality! You will be rewarded with warm feelings, regular backer updates, and your name will be printed in the Airpup manual.


$10

Airpup Stickers

Thanks for helping make Airpup a reality! You will be rewarded with cool Airpup stickers illustrated by Justin Nichol, warm feelings, regular backer updates, and your name will be printed in the Airpup manual.


$25

Airpup Postcards

Thanks for helping make Airpup a reality! You will be rewarded with a pack of five postcards featuring Airpup in action and aerial photos from Airpup. In addition, enjoy stickers, warm feelings, regular backer updates, and your name in the Airpup manual.


$650

Airpup

Get Airpup-- the small kite balloon with a 500g payload capacity. Made in the USA, in partnership with Blimp Works. Add gloves and a wooden winder with 500' of braided Dacron line. Winder made in the USA from sustainably sourced birch plywood. Braided white dacron line made in the USA by Shanti Kites. Premium cut-resistant driving gloves are made from goatskin with a woven kevlar liner. Get smooth motions while protecting your hands.


$50

Winder, Line, & Safety Gloves

Premium cut-resistant driving gloves made from goatskin lined with woven kevlar. Get smooth motions while protecting your hands. A wooden winder with 500' of braided Dacron line. Made in the USA from sustainably sourced birch plywood. Braided white dacron line made in the USA by Shanti Kites.

Credits

Head Full of Air LLC

Mathew Lippincott created Head Full of Air LLC to further his passion for low-cost kite and balloon flight systems and open hardware. Through Head Full of Air, Mathew has created learning resources for NSF- add NASA- funded educational projects as well as led public workshops.


Mathew Lippincott

Subscribe to the Crowd Supply newsletter, highlighting the latest creators and projects: