Dan Kurahashi Invader Kite Train

Invader Kite Train

Presented by Dan Kurahashi, Burnaby, BC Canada


Individual invader kite is 14” wide X 16” high (14” bamboo stick),

The entire train is 24 kites 6’ apart, so length is 150’ long.


Project flys best in very wide wind range, from a light/almost no wind to a moderate wind


Offered Once


Full Day Project


No Sew Project


Class Size - 15


All Skill Levels

The secret to welding plastics is to heat up the plastic above the melting point but below the cutting point. Different types of plastics will be discussed (HDPE, LDPE, PET, PP and PVC) and their various melting points. Dan will quickly lead you through the steps to make great looking and long lasting kites. Dan is very knowledgeable about his class and discussions will include:

Various melting points of different types of plastic:

  • HDPE (High Density Polyethylene : (make crisp rustling noise) is about 130 ºC

  • LDPE (Low Density Polyethylene : (make no noise) is about 110 ºC

  • PET (Polyethylene terephthalate : water bottle) is about 250—260 ºC

  • PP (Polypropylene) is about 160—170 ºC

  • PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) is about 75—90 ºC

Learn that the tip temperature needs to be 30 ºC to 100 ºC higher than melting point of the material you are working with. Consider following facts, right combination of materials, techniques and consistency makes seal better, if you fail, change one thing at time.

  • Tip temperature

  • Heat transfer rate, two layers or three layers? Total thickness?

  • Pressure, more will transfer heat faster, too much tear the face.

  • Speed if moving, or if stationed length of time. Do not forget to wait until the joined material cools down.

Bring a box 12X12X3 inches to take your train home in! Pizza Boxes work great!


Order one of Dan's preferred heat sealer. They are great!

Or you can bring your own heat control soldering iron.

Linda Larkey says order Dan's soldering iron! It makes the class techniques easy!

Invader Kite Train Learn different methods to heat seal multi-color low density plastic. Dan is a Japanese kite and kite train expert. This simple-to-build kite turns into a wonderful train. You will learn techniques to work with bamboo including how to split, fine tune, and bend it. Dan will give you lots of information about the different plastics and teach you how to join pieces together using heat sealing. And you will learn about kite trains such as what kind of kites are suitable for trains, how to join individual kites into a train, and very importantly you will learn about flying trains. This would be where, when, how to launch, fly and retrieve your train.

In the class you will make 24 plastic multi colored plastic Invader kites, and get instructions on how to tie them into a train. The train material comes in four colors with 6 skins of each, 6 Yellow, 6 Blue, 6 Red, 6 black (or white), total of 24 kites. Made into a train, with kites spaced every 6 feet, this project will be over 150 feet long!

What to bring:

Supplies/Equipment Needed for class -- Pre-Order a heat sealer for class or bring your own heat control soldering iron.

Also needed is an extension cord, scissors, exacto knife, 1/8” hand punch if available, wax paper (cooking type), old newspapers, 14” or longer metal straight edge and a couple of large poster boards or cardboard to have a smooth sealing surface while protecting the table surface.

KIT ORDER CUT OFF: by 01/31/2018 Extra kits available to any 2018 U-MAKE Registrant

COLOR CHOICE: Selected in class, the Invader Train will have 24 sails, with 6 sails in 4 colors each (6 Yellow, 6 Blue, 6 Red and 6 in Black or White) multi color sails in each kit.

KIT PRICE: Project is $40 US ($1.60 per kite!) and you can order a heat controlled soldering iron with custom special tips for those who need them for $25 US also.