A Hovercraft for Youngsters
Runs on a lawnmower engine - Made of plywood - Flies up to 125 pounds payload.This hovercraft for youngsters designed as an educational father/son project. It was featured in Popular Mechanics magazine.
Instant DownloadPlans exclusively come in digital format and include full scale PDF drawings and a 32-page photo-illustrated PDF book with hovercraft principles of operation. Plans also include the Solidworks CAD files.
On just the power from a 3-1/2 hp lawnmower engine, Pegasus will lift a 125-pound payload free of the ground and navigate at about walking speed across any hard, flat surface. The craft is built using a simple framework of 1/4-inch plywood, which is skinned over with 1/8-inch plywood. For safety reasons, the engine and lift-fan are enclosed inside the plywood housing at the rear. Control is effected by shifting body weight in the desired direction of travel. A flexible vinyl skirt provides an obstacle clearance of about 8 inches. Expect to spend about $250 – $350, depending on local materials prices and on whether you buy a used or new engine. Minimal tools and building skills are required.
Plans give an overview of hovercraft theory which you can then put to work by making modifications of your own. Pegasus is designed as a fun and educational project – not for serious hovering. Suitable terrain is limited to parking lots and level fields. Performance can, however, be dramatically improved by the simple addition of a small thrust engine. Click here for a newspaper article about two teenagers (100kb) who installed a thrust engine and claim their Pegasus will do up to 30 mph. For a high-performance recreational hovercraft, take a look at Tri-Flyer plans.
Pegasus was originally featured in Popular Mechanics magazine in January 1984. Click on the images in the left margin to view large images.