We should be very careful what we wish for. Back in the 60s I used to watch Super Car on TV, with Mike Mercury the puppet character and wished that we all had our own personal floating car that didn't depend on wheels or anything else. Well now we have it! Small personal hovercraft are making a splash everywhere all over the globe, and the price is well withing reach of ordinary mortals like us. For the sporting enthusiast, around 10 000 dollars is considered within reach and you could easily spend that for a top line quad or speed boat. However, air cushioned craft, for that is the real name of the hovercraft, are none of these.
First off, you don't need wheels or a propeller to get these things moving, and moving fast! There's no drag on the vehicle except air flow, which is at the same time an advantage and a disadvantage. With no wheels on the ground , propeller or rudder in the water, it takes quite a while to slow down, stop or change direction. All this means is that there is a learning curve when starting to operate small hovercraft, so it's a no-brainer when it comes to driving it around.
Personal hovercraft have been around for some decades, but not in it's present form. Recent developments in material technology and construction methods have ensured that the price is right, while safety and maintenance are top class. For example, the first hovercraft were made with hulls of glass fiber, which tended to split when they hit something - not a very good advertisement for the industry! Nobody wants a vehicle that breaks in half and takes a lot of money to put back in order, so it was back to the drawing board for the designers. Click to see site
The skirts too have had a complete overhaul. Originally they were made out of rip stop sail cloth, which is used for the big sailing boats. New materials include neoprene coated nylon and kevlar, which is an incredibly tough material capable of stopping bullets. In addition, the engines come in choices of size and are almost maintenance free, apart from popping some oil in now and again. Personal hovercraft transport is certainly taking off ans set to grow in the coming years. Racing enthusiasts like the way you have to throw your weight around to steer them and the family man appreciates the modern commitment to safety.
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