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. Click on Pegasus video to see a video of Stefano Paris flying his
hovercraft. 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.
Diameter: 87 inches
Height: 25 inches
Engine: 3-1/2 hp lawnmower engine
Fan: 24 inch diameter, 2 blade
Rated Payload: 125 lbs