How to Make a Hang Glider

by Contributor

For centuries people have yearned to soar through the air like birds, and now they can thanks to hang gliders. One of the simplest forms of human flight is hang gliding. The basic construction of a glider is a rigid frame resembling the shape of a wing with the pilot suspended from a strap connected to the glider's frame. This gives it the term "hang" glider.

Find some hang glider plans for the basis of your construction. Many of the plans on the Internet came from the 1970s, so keep in mind that safety standards have changed since then. It might be a little more difficult to make a more recent hang glider, as manufacturers don't want you to use their designs. They just want you to purchase their gliders.

Buy a used wing instead of creating your own. This can help tremendously when you make your glider.

Follow the instructions carefully, otherwise you risk injury. Make sure you have all the materials on hand, as well as any tools needed. Materials you may need include nylon and PVC pipes. Keep in mind that if you want to sit on your glider, you'll need extra materials. Most plans are made for flying prone.

Fly your glider over short distances only. The type of glider you design shouldn't be used over long distances.

Tip

  • It's inherently cheaper to purchase a secondhand hang glider than to build one yourself. This is for several reasons, the first being that making the sail of your glider is almost as expensive as the 5-to-6-year-old glider that you can get at a store.

Warning

  • Don't use this glider to fly over long distances. Odds are you won't get a lot of air between you and the ground with a glider you constructed yourself.