Building a Hovercraft

I’m building a hovercraft and I decided to go electrical considering I probably will be seeing enough explosions when my freind and I build the jetpack we’re designing. So my question is: What is, and where can I get, a fairly powerful fan that doesn’t weigh too much, suck to much electricity, and cost too much money.

I’m real light, only 56 lbs, so it doesn’t have to be too powerful

Yes, I do understand how to build one and its compexities, I just can’t find a good fan.

yes me and my friend do have designs for a jetpack that theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically theoretically will work work without unobtanium, albeit being bulky and probably expensive. I am NOT crazy

and hovercrafts do work, I just can’t find a proper fan

My computer fan sounds like it could lift you, but it makes more noise than the amount of air that it actually moves. Have you considered visiting the MIT web site? That would be right up their alley.

Why not make your own squirrel cage blower? They can be made fairly cheaply out of easy to find materials. There is a hovercraft at the Port of Anchorage that uses them, it’s a big sucker 30 x 10 feet with a V8 engine to turn the fans. The bigger the dia. of the cage the slower they can turn and still put out the same amount of air.

Well… if the “electrical” isn’t firm, I’d think a few lawnmower engines would work well, especially if you’re handy enough to fix disfunctional ones people are throwing out.

BTW, what type of motors for the jetpack? Hydrogen peroxide?


You don’t need much air pressure to maintain lift on a hovercraft - 2 or 3 psi is enough. I see several plans available for purchase online for single-person which can be powered by an electric or gas leafblower.

My science teacher let us ride on a hovercraft he made that uses a leaf blower. It was very cool.

omg 56lbs O_o

it would be cool to have a hovering thing…

Someone I know used a vacume that could go in reverse
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I would advise building your own,

I bet you will be able to find both a cheap engine (out of a scooter or something) and an old rotor blade of an aircraft or something should be pretty cheap aswell.

At the place i used to work they had these 3feet diameter industrial fans that ran off a normal outlet and they were extremely powerful, im not sure this is what you want just suggesting it. Oh yea very lightwieght too made out of aluminum.

56 pounds? How old are you?

As for the hovercraft, i have no idea what type of fan you should use. I made this mini hovercraft when i was 8 using a motor from a toy car, a fan i made from cardboard, and a nine volt batterie. It didnt really work too good, it was so close to the ground it seemed more like it was vibrating rather than floating.

Hmm, what if you used 500 little fans, then you wouldnt need a horizontally facing fan to provide horizontal propulsion, because you could turn off about 1/3 of the fans on one side, then you would start moving toward the other direction.

Hmmm… I once tried undertaking a similar project. My plan was to use a lawnmower engine, which would be more than enough power to lift a person (electrical OR gas powered). Problem with electric though was that if you plug it in you can only go as far as the cord let you.

As for forward propulsion you don’t even need two motors. Just tilt the fan and make a divider that sends some air to the lift and some to thrust.

Of course this is only theoretical, I never got around to actually making one since I’m just too lazy to find a lawnmower. %|

You won’t sue us if you get seriously injured will you?

Why build your own hovercraft/skycar when you can purchase your own?
Check out

Really, their VTOL skycar latest one looks pretty cool.
Max altitude: 29,000 ft
Top speed @ 20,000 ft: 380 mph
Maximum range: 900 miles
Fuel consumption: 28 mpg (Is this good for an aircraft? It uses regular car gasoline…)

It can seat 4 and even comes with emergency parachutes. The only drawback (and it’s a big one) is that it’s 65 dba from 500 ft!!! That’s their goal noise level anyway.

No price listed right now…

Even though there’s parachutes, that’s a lot of money if it breaks down in midair and it crashes! I think maybe there are parachutes that attach to the skycar itself. But if it lands on a house… :expressionless:

Those parachutes are integrated into the vehicle itself.

Oh brother, I learn how to make one in High School, all you need is a vacume morter, wood with a hole so the morter can go in it and heavy plastic at the bottom with some holes, take the plastic, cover the board and seal the edges, very simple. The vacume sucks air in, push it out at the bottom where the plastic is and lift it up like a puck on a air hocky table.

Moller has been around for a very long time, and it will be a very long time yet before you can actually buy one (if ever). 28mpg may not be accurate… last time I heard the guy give an interview, he used to talk about “passenger miles per gallon”, and never talked about the actual mpg… so if that’s the 4 passenger version, it’s more like only 7mpg. I think though that the most they’ve flown it is a few tethered flights, getting it 10ft in the air or so… of course, the vert. take off and landing is the hardest part. Last price figures I’ve heard… 1 million USD, with the price dropping to around 30 thousand USD if they’re heavily mass produced, selling many thousands of skycars per year.

And yes, the parachute would be for the whole skycar, which isn’t all too new. I think for the past few years they’ve been building parachutes into small personal aircraft like Cessna 182’s and the like. I’ve seen video of some of the tests, and it’s kind of funny to see a 4-6 seat aircraft floating down under a huge chute.

I think there’s another interesting thing coming around, that may be out sooner, and may be cheaper. The Solotrek. It’s kindof like a cross between a hanglider and a helicoptor. You stand up on it, and two fans just above your head provide the lift. According to their site, it seems the military has an interest in them, so they probably have the funding to make it happen. Here’s a CNN story about a test flight, their own website seems to be down.


It was up when I checked it…

Are we supposed to believe those “prototype pics” on their website?? Even with a fast shutter, you would still see some motion blur on the impeller blades, but it looks like they’re totally still! The teather looks like it’s pulled pretty tightly too!