Greg Milano's Wheelbarrow Wheel Landyacht





Introduction: Greg Milano's Wheelbarrow Wheel Landyacht

Greg Milano works with disabled people in Alameda California.
He bought this homebrew landyacht secondhand and has been fixing it up for his clients to use.
It uses wheelbarrow wheels and a windsurfer sail. It carries two people in comfort and comes apart for transport.

In this video the frame twists quite a bit. After that we added two more tubes to triangulate the frame, and it doesn't twist anymore.

Step 1: The Rear Wheels

These are wheels from wheelbarrows with regular wheelbarrow tires and innertubes on them.

They are plenty strong and have no trouble with the side forces.
I guess they were made in America by union workers.
I built a landyacht once using cheap imported Harborfreight wheelbarrow wheels. The hubs broke off the wheels after a few minutes. You'd have to weld some braces onto those wheels to make them strong enough.

These axles are stubby things that insert into the rear aluminum tube. The axle nut has a retaining wire to keep it from spinning off.

The rusty tube seen here is one of two braces we added to triangulate the mast support. After that the frame didn't twist anymore.

Step 2: Front Fork and Wheel

The front wheel is also from a wheelbarrow. It's steered with two pushrods from the footbar.

One of the steering arms had broken off the fork and got lost. I helped Greg bend and weld a new one from stainless rod. While we were at it we reinforced the other steering arm

The pushrods have small balljoints at each end to connect to the fork and the footbar.

Step 3: Rigging the Sail

Greg attaches the boom to the sail.

The sail is a 6.5 square meter windsurfing sail. It's got battens and "camber inducers" which are forks on the end of the battens that push on the mast.

This is a modern sail, which means you use lots of downhaul force and not much outhaul.

Since the downhaul ring is no the landyacht it's a bit different than rigging a windsurfer. You slide the mast over the stub mast and then downhaul the sail until it looks good. "Looks good" means the top of the sail is flat but not slack, and the sail belly is about 7% of chord.

Step 4: Mast Support

This is the most complicated part of the machine. The purpose of these parts are to hold the mast vertical while allowing it to turn freely. If the mast doesn't turn freely the camber inducers jump off the mast and sail shape suffers.

In the second and third photos here I'm showing which parts turn.
I'm grabbing the downhaul ring that's used to downhaul the sail.
The downhaul ring is attached to the stub mast and both turn.
Below that is the mast step. The stub mast fits into the step and is greased so it'll turn.
Above the downhaul ring is a black plastic sleeve over the stub mast. It's free to rotate but it doesn't have to. Above that is the mast support. It's bolted to a couple of tubes that go back to the rear axle.
The mast support looks like it has a fancy bearing in it, but it might just be a plastic ring and some grease.
Above that is the thrust bearing, which is a couple of greased plastic disks. They're pushed up to show what the top of the mast support looks like.

Step 5: Seating Platform

The seating platform is a piece of plywood with a couple of legless lawnchairs u-bolted to it.

Step 6: Frame

The frame has evolved quite a bit.
Originally all the frame pieces came apart with clamps as seen in the third picture, so no piece would be more than 8 feet long.
The rear axle is now reinforced with an aluminum channel.
We added the two rusty steel scaffold tubes to keep the frame from twisting.
When you build your frame use lots of triangles. That's called "triangulation" or "triangulationizitionizing"

It's different from "strangulation" which is what happens when the mainsheet wraps around your neck and then you run over it with the rear wheels.

Step 7: Steering and Sheeting

Steer with your feet.

Mainsheet is tied to the chair middle arms and goes up to a pulley on the end of the boom. Pull with your hands, don't get it around your neck.

Have fun!



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    Of course in mant choke holds you are using a version of triangulation and causing strangulation. Just kidding great Job.

    I've been wanting to build one of these for a very long time (ever since I found some basic directions in an old DIY encyclopedia that my great grandpa gave me). I built a model of one based on those directions (only with skis instead of wheels for sailing on ice). I made up my own plans for interchangeable wheels / skis so you can use it all year round! (I'll have to post them on here sometime).

    I'm an avid fan / subscriber (and I went to my first Maker Faire just this summer in Detroit)!!!!!


    I have been involved with landsailers for a long time. I had a Manta-twin for a while and built my own before that. I really wish I had my Manta back. This is an inspiration. Maybe I will build one again.
    This is a good design. I see a bit too much weight but I have also seen landsailers built out of truck frames that moved in low wind while the "performance" carts would not. I think you get away with the low mast supports because your sail is not that tall.

    Because I had a Manta-Twin I tend to compare everything to them. They only weigh 120 lbs and are made out of aircraft aluminum. I have done full 360s and hit close to 60 mph on a Manta-twin. Now if I could just gather up $2600 I could have a new one again.

    Or like this creative fellow I could just build one. Were's my welder?

    this is awesome. how fast have you gotten it up to?

    Is it legal to drive one of these on a highway?

    Wow. That's pretty cool. If I had a place to use it I'd definitely build it.

    you know a great place to use it? on the street XD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! jk youd probly get yourself killed

    Will it fall over if you jibe?
    I'd be scared to try if there was any wind.

    They are plenty strong and have no trouble with the side forces.
    I guess they were made in America by union workers.

    real classy mate, you know that non-USA people can access the internet too right?