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1900 Wright Kite Activity

Photo of 1900 Wright Aircraft at Kitty Hawk


1. Why did theWright brothers bother building this kite.? Why didn't they just build the plane first?

2. What were the Wright's trying to learn by flying this kite?

3. Why do you think the kite had two wings?

4. The surface of each wing is slightly curved, front to back. Why do you think they were made this way and not made flat?

5. Why didn't they just stay in Dayton to test their kite?

6. The lower wing has a open space for a man to lay in. Why did almost all of their flights of this kite not have a man aboard, as shown in this picture?

7. The part sticking out in the front of the kite was called an "elevator". What do you suppose it did?

8. The curve on the surface of this elevator was made to be adjustable. What was the purpose of this?

9. Why do you think it was important to have tightly-woven fabric as a wing covering?

10. Which of these do you think was the actual weight of the kite? A) 4 lbs. B) 17 lbs. C) 52 lbs D) 175 lbs.

"Our machine was designed to be flown as a kite, with a man on board, in winds of from fifteen to twenty miles an hour. But, upon trial, it was found that much stronger winds were required to lift it. Suitable winds not being plentiful, we found it necessary, in order to test the new balancing system, to fly the machine as a kite without a man on board, operating the levers through cords from the ground."

Questions prepared by Roger Storm, Fairview Park High School, Aug, 2001.


Button to Display Wright Index

Re-Living the Wright Way
Beginner's Guide to Aeronautics
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Editor: Tom Benson
NASA Official: Tom Benson
Last Updated: Thu, Jun 12 05:10:21 PM EDT 2014

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