How to Build Scale Hoverboards From Back to the Future.




About: Im a model maker who makes film and game props in my spare time. If you like my work please visit my blog it has more work. email me at backwardsprops @ gmail . com (with out the spaces, stops...

I have always loved the Back to the future trilogy and as soon as i saw the hoverboard i wanted all of the boards. I recently re-watched the films and then thought i wanted to make some boards but 5 of the full size boards would have taken up a lot of space so i decided to make 1/6th scale boards.

This took the size of the boards from 711-863mm to 118- 154mm a much more manageable size.

So this instructable is how i went about making the boards.

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Step 1: Tools and Materials.


-Laser cutter (coping saw or jigsaw will work if you don't have a laser cutter)
-File / sand paper.
-scalpel, craft knife
-line bender for plastics.
-drawing software of some sort. (i used adobe illustrator.)


-glossy paper ( to print the decals on)
-double sided sticky paper
-3mm acrylic
-2mm acrulic

-paint (spray paint or acrylic paint will both work fine)

Step 2: Research and Study.

First off its time to do an internet search or watch the film and do some screen grabbing to find some good images of the board or boards you want to make.

There are literally hundreds on google. 

once you have the screen grabs or internet pictures you can get to designing your boards.

Step 3: Plans and Designs.

Once you have decided which board you want to make start doing some plan making.

Take  the images you found and work out the outline shapes of each design.

Then do some plans for the hover pads.

The basic design for the hover pads are identical on each hoverboard, then each one has little clips which are different and are painted different. 

Once the plans have been drawn its time to work on the designs of each board.

Using the images draw out some image file to use as the decals for the boards.
Print out the images you have drawn up and stick them on to some double sided sheet, then cut them out.

Step 4: Making the Boards.

Cut out the board templates and the "battery compartment" of the hover board out of 3mm acrylic (i had access to a laser cutter but you can cut it by hand.)

Cut out all the other parts out of 2mm acrylic. the difference in thickness between the "battery compartment" and the other parts is to mimic the source images. 

collect all the parts into the separate board sets. this will help you keep track of all the parts you have and need. 

Step 5: Bending the Board

Use a line bender to bend the rear section of the Marty McFly board.

place the board over the hot wire for the amount of time necessary for your material and thickness. it varies with make and model. mine was 3mm thick so it was on high heat for 105 seconds.

be safe with this as the line bender does get very hot. The plastic also get very hot, do not burn yourself.

Step 6: Filing the Boards Edges.

Then use a file or sand paper to take the sharp right angle off the plastic that comes from cutting things on the laser cutter.

This is to make it look better and closer to the real things.

Step 7: Mock Fit.

Its always a good idea to take all the parts you have made and test fit them before glueing or fixing as you might have got something wrong. and once its glued its harder to rectify mistakes.

Step 8: Painting the Parts of the Hoverboard

Give the boards and all the hover parts with the colours from the source images from the film. Wait for them to dry.

Step 9: Applying the Designs

Once the main board parts have dried, cut the decals to the edge of the design and stick them onto the board parts.

Step 10: Finishing the Construction.

When everything had dried glue all the hover parts onto the bottom of the deck. When the glue has set and dried turn it over and glue the foot pad and magnet brackets on and wait for the glue to set.

Step 11: Finishing Up.

Once everything has dried and set you have a full set of 1/6th scale Hoverboard :) Play with then as you will but remember they don't work on water unless you have power. All these parts could be printed on a 3D printer. If I had access to one or owned one I could make all the parts far more precise. Nonetheless I really like these as they are.

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    18 Discussions


    1 year ago

    Hello !! I have some difficulties for foun stickers design in good quality can you help me please ?


    2 years ago

    make them into skateboarda


    3 years ago

    jush a cool and simple idea


    5 years ago on Introduction

    Hello. Fantastic idea !!

    But, i search to have the stickers for printing.

    You have sources ?


    6 years ago on Step 9

    How much did that cost you in total? Where can I buy all the materials in Canada?

    1 reply
    backwards lambMermaidTanya

    Reply 6 years ago on Step 9

    I'm not sure how much it cost in total as i had all the materials already in scrap etc. it shouldn't cost more than £20, And i have no idea where you can buy the materials in Canada as im from the UK. you could try googling it?

    like a g

    6 years ago

    Can I buy 1


    6 years ago

    It would be so easy to make that thing hover, just fit an airtight tarp to the bottom, add a (small) leafblower, a lipo, and a (smallish) fan, cut the holes it the tarp to create an air cushion (you'll have to cut a zone of holes for each side). Just put the fan on a hinge and add a dowel for steering, or a servo and a remote control if you want to look completely badass.

    1 reply
    backwards lambaustech

    Reply 6 years ago on Introduction

    well that would make a full sized board but these are 118mm in length so they are about 10x smaller than a small leaf blower. :)

    Epic 8 mm

    6 years ago

    Yaay there is a shortage of instructables in this!


    6 years ago on Introduction

    When are you planning to implement hover technology? :D