Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Hover Craft

Hover Craft are true all-terrain vehicles, able to fly over any flat surface - so over rivers, streams, lakes, in coastal areas, at high tide, at low tide, over mud, sand, tarmac, concrete, up slipway, over beach, up river bank, over snow, ice, grass. 

Hover craft have evolved from commercial ferries and military patrol hovercraft. Hovercraft enthusiasts created their own designs from plywood and balsa wood  - racing enthusiasts developed ultra thin glass fibre hulls, and then professional cruise and leisure hover craft developed, with latest models constructed from ultra tough lightweight and extremely bouyant High Density Polyurethane (HDPE)

The Hov Pod Hovercraft was first introduced in 2002  - founder Peter Ward simply wanted to buy a personal  leisure hovercraft, but each model he studied at that time had serious safety  issues (and some still do). Hovercraft enthusiasts tended to reduce weight to get better performance, so created very thin glass fibre hulls that lacked durability. Peter was concerned that fans went unprotected - even today, some DIY hovercraft builders have endangered themselves by not fitting proper guards to the front and rear of the duct assembly - can you imagine driving in public with fans spinning at 2000 rpm without proper protection?

Whereas many hovercraft enthusiasts build to reduce weight to a minimum, we consider durability, and this is why we reject the neoprene coated nylon skirts or Hypalon as favoured by other suppliers - we fit polyurethane coated nylon. 

Many enthusiasts up-rate engines to squeeze every cc of power, invalidating engine manufacturer’s warranties - we ship more powerful engines with power in reserve to assist starting on-water when hovercraft have to overcome the pressure wave (The Hump). We fit safety features like the rear fan guard - other suppliers don’t because guards restrict air throughput, so by compromising your safety, they can appear to offer a cheaper hovercraft, so buyer beware!

Hovercraft are weight dependent vehicles, so in the past, many homemade enthusiasts have produced thin glass fibre hulls that lack durability. Our design ethos is to produce more durable hovercraft that can withstand day to day punishment, since hovercraft travel of land as well as water surfaces, and need to be strong.

Hovercraft Hull Design

The Hov Pod hull is manufactured from High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) - this material is far stronger than glass fibre, and also extremely buoyant.

Hovercraft Skirt Material

We have rejected the skirt materials other suppliers use, we found neoprene coated nylon susceptible to UV degradation, sunlight weakens the fabric. We also rejected Hypalon since this tears too easily. We fit polyurethane coated nylon - we invite you to try tear this fabric - it lasts for years, rather than weeks or months. Some manufacturers make good repeat business replacing skirts, we don't, they last too long! The Hov Pod skirts are segmented, so if you do damage a section, this can be easily changed in one minute - no need to replace the full skirt. (65 sections in total)

Hovercraft Safety

Safety aspects of design are an important consideration - in recent months some DIY hovercraft projects have ended in injury or worse because self build hovercraft enthusiasts have not properly guard the spinning fan blades that travel at over 2000 rpm. Hov Pod fit a front and a rear guard to the duct to prevent accidents from occurring, but many suppliers fail to fit a rear fan guard since guards slow air throughput - by ditching safety aspects, they can fit under powered cheaper engines, so there is a price to pay for safety, and we think the safety of our customers, friends, family and bystanders should not be compromised.

Full Warranty

The Hov Pod is supplied with full hull and engine warranties - some suppliers up-rate or modify engines to get more output than engine manufacturers intended. Modifying an engine to extract more power invalidates the engine manufacturer’s warranty - engines are not designed to work at maximum efficiency at all times.

Engines Available

We have rejected engines that are used by other hovercraft manufacturers, e.g. Hirth, Moto Guzzi - we offer the superbly reliable Rotax 582 microlight engine than offers 275 Kgs (606 pounds) lift from an on-water start (50% more if starting from land) Or the Weber 120HP Turbo powered engine to lift 325 Kgs (717 pounds) from an on-water start (50% more if starting from land). 

Easy to Use

The Hov Pod is designed to be easy to use - we fit anti-plough skirts, and do away with unwanted controls by optimizing trim in the factory.

Quality and performance for long product life, low depreciation

The Hov Pod engineering parts are designed by computer on CAD software, then engineered by robots who never have a bad day and work to the tightest of engineering tolerances. (CNC).

Many Applications

The Hov Pod is designed to be suitable for all applications, from leisure to commercial, rescue, survey, rental and military patrol - we offer a wide range of options to suit many diverse applications.

Further Information

Contact us for pricing information. We can send you samples of the hull and skirt materials, specification sheets, images, videos, free hovercraft guide, contact us for pricing information through http://www.hov-pod-hovercraft.com/

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