posted on Sep, 15 2012 @ 07:02 PM
I am Greg, proud son of Kenneth Sams, inventor of "UFO SAM" (for unconventional flying object). It is not technically a kite. He flew over that
Pittsburgh game when visiting his sisters, flying wherever he sent, preferably over public events and sometimes getting in trouble and the news. We
flew them often at night from London's Waterloo Bridge, invisible until rising above the bottom-lit buildings on the bank and erupting as flashing
lights in the night sky, looking as though on the edge of the atmosphere. Caused a few stirs.
After WW2 dad sold balsa wood kits for rota-kites on the beach in LA to fund himself at UCLA on the G.I. Bill. They were a lawn-mower layout with a
rectangular center wing and a disc on each end. He worked for Uncle Sam the next 21 years, retired early, and went straight back to his first love,
that rota-kite, using the new expanded polystyrene, eliminating the messy bits and increasing its strength.
The principle (forget its name) on which the original rota-kite flew was that the rotating wing created a downwards pressure, contained by the discs,
which gave it lift. You had to launch it the right way up or it flew straight down. Long story made short: several materials and many years and
tinkerings later, with zero knowledge of aeronautics, Ken eliminated the wing, making it a flat oval disk, and put one round wing in the center. The
UFO Sam could launch either way up and was no longer a kite, as kites need a wing. There is no known principle explaining why it flies.
Many designs for spinning flyers, Ken's whole story, worldwide press clips, and poignant Final Words in his book - search Flying Toys sams at Amazon.
Some story here: craigsams.com...