Picture of small hovercraft
a simple,free and safe hovercraft model!

Step 1: Things you need!

Picture of things you need!
u need:
1 a big plastic or paper plate
2 a pc fan
3 some batteries (12 volts)
4 some tape
Lunashy6661 year ago
are u sure it works??
doesn't fly....i did it exactly like in the instructables.any suggestions?
instead of using two double a's and a nine volt
you should use a tiny a23 size battery.
spiderloco3 years ago
I thought of this idea also. After cutting the paper plate and attaching a 12 volt fan motor from an old computer to it I powered it up to 19 volts (the biggest pwr supply that I have laying around) and it just about will hover with the weight of the motor. The voltage will have to be increased well beyond the tolerance of the motor to get a good lift. We need a better motor/ fan combo
i was thinking of doing the same thing except with a small motor, propellar, a bowl, and a button cell battery.
saransaleen4 years ago
Good idea !! but let me gie a another replacement for the batterys ..... the red and black wires of the PC fan to a USB cable..... just cut off the the end that u connect to the load (ex : mobile).. inside u see red & black wires just connect the red wire to the fan's red wire and the black wire to the fan's black wire.....
ShemySheza4 years ago
is it safe to connect a 9v and AA together?wont the AA explode?

ShemySheza4 years ago
is it safe to connect a 9v and AA together?wont the AA explode?

benduy4 years ago
the reason the hovercraft spins is the grooves in the plate, how heavy is the fan.
Raziel74 years ago
maybe you could make an instructable in spanish?
There should be a Spanish section for instructables.

I speak fluent English and Spanish so if you ever need help translating hit me up.
win12134 years ago
there is one problem with all this hovercraft and that is when the fan spins...the whole thing spins as well...so if anyone have any idea to solve this problem please help me out =)
vignesh12305 years ago
I'm sorry but i do not think that this qualifies as an instructable. You instructable needs more detail. For step 4 just putting the batteries would not do. Tell them what sides to put together. And for step 5 you need to tell them where to put it and how to set the perfect center of gravity not just put it in place. So please try to make this instructable better.
hgseawave8 years ago
Question from my 10 year old: it does not seem to work for me..! we bought a new fan and new battries. the combiantion of batteries the directions say to put together does not work. the hovercarft does not seem to suppor tthe batteries and it spins very slow. the directions don't explain where to attach the wires to the batteries.
OK did you wire it it series or parallel? Series makes the voltage go up and parallel makes the amperage go up. for more info go to http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/battery5.htm. I might have gotten the series and parallel mixed up cuz i'm only 12
did you use new batteries (thats what always happens to me)
andresm (author)  hgseawave7 years ago
im really sorry, try with a power source, and if it spins very slowly its the voltage, maybe its not strong enough
zigzagchris5 years ago
is it bad to use 2 9v for a 12v fan. It runs like it but will it break it?
A fast response would be appreciated cos its due next week and im away next weekend thanks bro
was your fan very heavy or was it a light computer fan?
I'm tryin it 4 a skool project. should be fun. I LIKE TOAST!
thealeks5 years ago
dude! i made this and powered it with a 12v adapter and it rocks! thanks for posting this!
win12136 years ago
can some 1 help me cus my whole hovercraft will spin when the fan spin
i made it but mine doesnt work so i made one with four 50mm fans and rechargable batteries and it works very well
sajada7 years ago
Just wondering... is there anything else to replace the pc fan? you know Im still 13 so i dont have acces to those kinds of things. would a couple of those disposoble fans work? ya' know placed strategically? with all do respect
FXwhiz30 sajada6 years ago
all you have to do is get an old windows 98 or 95 and disect it to get the fan!
Apemza sajada7 years ago
Hey man, you can buy one in the computer stores - usually uinder 3$ !
dean-101 sajada7 years ago
hey, i no a site you can get those fans cheap it is www.maplin.co.uk they sell them in all sizes and they even sell ffan kits for making the likes of helicopter(small) and hovercrafts and stuff.
Notbob sajada7 years ago
its not that hard to get comp fans when I was 12-13 i would go and cruise the local goodwills and pick up really cheap old comps and salvage them for parts, ive (still got fans lying around) you should try it its really easy.
andresm (author)  sajada7 years ago
hey im sorry im not sure, im 14, so i did it for fun an afternoon, i just messed around with the batteries and fans,.. things like that. it was just plain fun. and if anyone of u get angry at me of my way of doing this, plz feel free to just mess around urselfs. remember wat instructables is about... its just funa and it Do It Yourself (not shouting at a 14 year old for exact instructions)
i are ben7 years ago
were can i buy napkins?
Grocery store.
i made mine out of cardboard plate and bent the rim up so i could put like balls in the rim and the rim acts as a bumper lol
win12137 years ago
i tried this a lot of time but it wont float but jus vibrate i think its too heavy HELP ME
try taking the fan out and flipping it around
theosullis7 years ago
Would a vacume engine work?
qwerty902107 years ago
I made a "Hover car" model similar to this but I used cardboard for the bottom and a "skirt" with a grocery bag.
andresm (author)  qwerty902107 years ago
good idea, how did u power it ?
9v it went out fast but it was enough 4 the science fair
I have been working on building a model hovercraft design for a couple weeks on and off. I have decided that in order to have a floating hovercraft. A) you must have some sort of skirt, cuz hovercrafts don't use air thrust, but air PRESSURE. But more importantnly( B) YOU MUST have a very high speed motor. A small prop, preferably a lot of blades. C) It needs to have a large surface area, because it is more efficient to load say 1SQF at 30PSI than 1/2SQF at 60PSI. The above model does have a relativly light, and large prop motor/fan setup. For it to hover better, i would put a larger plate, and attach a skirt by putting a garbage bag to the bottom, attach it somehow to the middle of the craft, and make small holes toward the center of the skirt..... ill make a instructable soon NOTE: It needs to be HELLA light
andresm (author)  mondaymonkey7 years ago
ur right about the cushion of air, thats why the plate is curved at the edges, hey but nice tips, ¡THANKS!
rockman7 years ago
i rekon its a great idea but the batteries are to heavy for the fan so what i did instead was extend the wire then hook it up to a bigger battery and it works fine
abbtech8 years ago
Looks great! Got a video?
andresm (author)  mxdreams7 years ago
sorry ur video was removed..
you want to see a video of it and you can make one in about a minute, dont be lazy just make one
i wish i could but i have to wait until the next council clean-up(i dont no where you live so im not sure if you do it)because people put about 1,000 computers out each time.
J_Hodgie8 years ago
Nice project, a great use for a bunch of old fans I have. Although, don't the batteries say not to mix different types?
they mean dont use nickel mettal hydride with lithium ion or alkaline alkaline are the ones u usually buy- there the cheapest mickel mettal hydride are they normal rechargable ones and lithium ion are the expensive ones you find in like ipods and cell phones along as you use the same kind, your ok they just worry about voltage problems cause a AA alcaline and a AA nickle mettal hydride have totally diff voltages and it would sorta explode =) o by the way, good instructable im deff gonna try this one and your english is better than most who speek it.
andresm (author)  stonehenge3607 years ago
thank you very much, but i didnt really understand the first part of ur comment lol
THe issue with mixing old and new or different types of batteries is just that they'll discharge at different rates and put a heavier load on one battery than normal. At best you reduce your efficiency, at worst I suppose one could get too hot and damage something.
Miltron_B8 years ago
Felicidades Cabrón, me dá un chingo de gusto ver que exista gente en mi país que se interese por este tipo de mamamadas y le guste construis cosas. Deberías poner una foto de la madre esa flotando _~ o un Video como dice por ahi otro guey.

Congrats on your English level mate, it's in no means an obstacle for your creative genius.
ha! nice spanish. i can speak a little: Como te llama, senor? Me llama Joe, y tu? Me llama Bob, adios! Hasta manana! Something like that... ;)
andresm (author)  Bad Donut7 years ago
lol well done, just 1 thing... ist me llamo not llama (its or feminin or a lama)
andrew938 years ago
so if it did work with you "andresm", put on a video showing us as a proof!! why don't you? you have a digital camera ,right? so do it!! it easy!!
The concept definatly works, so instead of bitching about your failure on the internet, why not modify the specifics of your project until it works?
Um one thing that people don't get is that computer fans are different from ordinary fans. Their speed is directly proportional to the voltage. It says 12V, but I've gone as high as 48 on some fans. so, you'd be better off with say... a bunch of small button cells wired in series (the thing only draws like .12A max anyways) than a 6V lantern battery, which might not even run the fan. All that matters here is voltage. Don't start off at 48V though, start at 12, and just add 6 til it breaks. (I got mine free) 24 should be enough for any fan.
bop967 years ago
I have a 19.2v battery thats about 2x5 inch and when I connected the wires on the fan to the battery with out the paper plate the fan flew up about 1 in. I've been doing this for 3years.
andrew938 years ago
"brainiac", u're right. this thing sucks. "andresm", i just finished one of these hovercrafts. they won't even lift off!!! it won't even move one millimeter!!!!! next time before you make an instructable, test it first and see if it works b4 you put it on internet so you don't hav 2 make people belive this and buy the fan and waste 8$!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
andresm (author)  andrew938 years ago
it did work for me
brainiac8 years ago
this thing saukes
Shahe8 years ago
no, the batteries make it way to heavy for a comp. ventilation fan to lift off. Even flot on a cusion of air.
jrgcool35 Shahe8 years ago
Yea you should use some silicon solar cells (radioshack.com) get em off the website not from the store.
Sim23_108 years ago
the fan i have has a white cable coming from it and a small blu electrical component on it. when i hook the red n blackup to a 9v nothing happens. i can someone explain what needs to be done to get it to work please.
Oki .. the white cable should mark positive or + .. unless it's black with a white stripe along it in wich case it's prolly negative or -. As for the little component it's most likely a resistor so just cut that of or something. It shuold run on a 9v without the resistor, if not increse voltage. Incidently, if this screws up youe fan I'ts not my fault ;v)
mallegonian8 years ago
Use gold cap capacitor 'batteries' - Nice, light, hold a good charge, just need a few extra electronics =)

jhopgood8 years ago
How about using the fans for vertical lift, as well as separate fans for horizontal directional control?
andy-b8 years ago
New group about hovercrafts:
it is so nice but really simple, I was wondering how to make a steerable one.
andresm (author) 8 years ago
if u cant get ur hovercraft to hover, get a bigger plate and try to make it air tight. also if it has wavy sides or with little holes alot of the force is used up sideways instead of down
Krasen8 years ago
Does this thing really flys ? :D
i think it just glides on a small cushion of air
carbon8 years ago
I don't have the batteries weighing it down, (wired to a lantern battery), and it still won't hover. Of course, I did get the fan from a pretty old computer, so maybe it is too slow? It seems to me that the fan won't force the air down and under and out of the paper plate. It feels like the air is coming back up through the fan.
zedomax8 years ago
tomsimonpp8 years ago
This is really not the ideal configuration. The batteries are too heavy and the fan should be higher pressure. I tried this and even running 2 9V batteries (18V) I couldn't get it to support the weight WITH the batteries. I tried different fans but ran into the same problem - the batteries can't support their weight with these fans. It does work if you don't mind the tether wire - which you will see Zedomax has done to the nth degree.
zedomax8 years ago
zedomax8 years ago
sure no problem to, i am gonna try to make a 2-fan hover-board, try to build on top of this hopefully... :)
andresm (author) 8 years ago
zedomax i watched your bideo its pretty good... i really liked the blue fan... thatks for trying this!!!
zedomax8 years ago
Hey this is great! I tried it myself but it seems like the battery is too heavy, so i tested w/o a battery w/ a power supply but glides great,
here's video of my version:

ttumbles8 years ago
So simple, so cool. My son is going to love this. Does it drag on one side from the weight of the batteries? I think I may try using 8 AAA batteries so that I can distribute the weight around the fan. I just hope they don't weigh too much. Thanks for the inspiration.
rgbphil8 years ago
cool project, I remember years and years ago a program on Australian television called the Curiosity Show where one of the presenters made a similiar dinner plate hovercraft, but with only the lackluster motors/fans available (old style ferrite magnets) at the time. This is a nice update to the sorts of things 21st century spare parts can do.