German Kite Patents a Treasure Trove

Ed Grauel
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Between the years 1882 and 1994, a total of 100 patents were issued by the German Patent Office for kites and kite accessories. This averages about one patent per year, approximately the same number of patents issued by the British Patent Office for English patents over a period of years. In contrast, the U.S. Patent Office issued an average of six to seven patents per year from 1886 to 1998, indicating a much greater interest in kiting in America than in those two European countries. Our usually reliable source of information about German kite patents is unable to provide information about kite patents issued after 1994.

Of the 100 German patents, 12, or 12 percent, were also patented in the U.S., so the subject matter of the patents was not new in this country. These German patents are:

No.51,499, for ship rescue; 200,677, hummer kite; 200,872, foldable kite; 235,722, triangular box kite; 335,342, line traveler; 494,556, airplane-type kite; 2,360,254, airplane-type kite; 2,440,507, two-line bowed kite; 2,505,050, parawing-type kite; 2,604,216, two-line delta-wing; 2,737,597, two-line channeled; and 3,830,459, two-line delta-wing.

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