View Full Version : Newbie Question

atscrase - n/a
3-Aug-07, 12:38 PM
I have just done a very rash or stupid thing and bought a hovercraft.

I have been promising the kids we would build one using an Rotax 503 engine I have in a Powerchute. I started the engine last weekend and realised I would have to come through. But also how much work it would be to do this!

So as with all things I looked on Ebay and found this and it was within 5 miles of home. Too good to be true. So now I own what is labeled an Osprey Hovercraft but cannot find anything out about it.

I have put some photos below. (I posted a similar message on the Yahoo.rec newsgroup who suggested in ask you guys. Sorry to anyone that subscribes to both groups.)

Has anybody got any ideas or suggestions. Apart from you have wasted your money! Which my wife has already said!

It is fitted with RD250z thrust engine no idea what the lift

engine is. Anyway does not matter as it will need replacing. What could I use?

Any ideas for contact supplies,etc gratefully received. I am based in the Southampton in the UK.

Thanks in anticipation.



jon_curtis - n/a
3-Aug-07, 01:57 PM
oh i saw that on ebay!

i would say you have two routes!

depending on what you want to use it for, and the performance you are after?

The first would be to fixup what is already there. changing bearings, belts etc etc etc and them old black fan blades would be advisory!

the skirt doesnt look to great, got a sewing machine?

you might find bits for the lift engine if you work out what it is! this might not cost a great deal!

the performance i doubt would be great, but if its the fun of fixing it up and you wana fly around a field with your kids, a good option.

second option.

i would put on a bigger thrust duct and fit the 503 you have got, find a lift engine or maybe shaft drive it off the 503, is an other option. again i wouldn't re-use much of the drive train/fans/frames/steering/skirt (ok its only using the hull).

this would obviously give better performance than the first option, and i might even verture out of a field onto some water lol!

What sorta use do you envisage from this once running, do you want race? cruise? fly around a field?

atscrase - n/a
3-Aug-07, 09:03 PM
Thanks for this. It is just to float around the field and a project to do with the boys. Then we will see were it goes!

Sewing the skirt is no problem. Not sure about the material. Were is a good cost effective source?

The lift engine says Sawafuji 124 or something like that on the top case. Does that give any clues?



slarman257@aol.com - n/a
3-Aug-07, 09:08 PM
Blimey, what you have got there is a very early Osprey Pintail, i reckon thats about a 1975 vintage. It was originally designed to have a twin duct set-up as is evident by the fact the outer duct pods are still there, but the mid section has been hacked out to allow a single duct to be fitted. Not much use for racing by todays standards unless you just want to cut your teeth with it and then transplant your 503 into some thing more modern.

It would possibly make an inshore cruiser with some work. But it is likely that the fixed bouyancy within the hull is missing as a lot of it was located within the mid duct section that has been cut out, there was very little freeboard on those hulls and i would strongly advise not using it in anything other than a millpond and close to shore.

If you let us all know what your intended use is to be i'm sure that you will get a lot of useful advise on here. Don't go spending a pile of money until you have got that advise, there are plenty of members who are local to you who i'm sure will come and take a look in return for a cuppa and biscuit.

good luck

P.S. love those ape-hanger bars, you must keep those http://hovercraft.org.uk/images/icons/smiley_icons/icon_lol.gif

GavinParson - n/a
3-Aug-07, 09:21 PM
No, that looks like a Goshawk to me. Kip had a white one as a cruiser and Martin Dougall used it to race against the French at Gennes on the Loire in 1985 and beat them all from the back of the grid. I've got a video of it.

I'm sure Kip will chip in and confirm it either way.

BTW, is this craft white under that scruffy blue exterior?

slarman257@aol.com - n/a
3-Aug-07, 09:36 PM
You may be right about what it is called Gavin i'm not so good on my old birds of prey, but i think this may be an early one of Pauls racers as i've got video of what i think is this very craft being raced by Paul at cosgrove Park MK circa late 70's.

If you have got loads of old video, like me!! hows about if i set a Photobucket site to post up all these old memories for all to see??

Simon L

atscrase - n/a
3-Aug-07, 09:45 PM
I was wondering about the "bulges" on either side and a twin duct would make sense.

Very happy to trade advice and contacts for cups of tea and a biscuit. I am in a small village called West Wellow area on the A36 between Salisbury and Southampton.

Only looking to use it in the fields for now so not worried about the freeboard for the minute.

Great to know what it is.



atscrase - n/a
3-Aug-07, 09:47 PM
Sorry I only went for the Osprey part because of the sticker on the front.



kevinf - n/a
3-Aug-07, 10:46 PM
Hi Alan

I live about a mile from you in Plaitford. If you'd like to send me your details by PM, I'll give you a call. Any help or advise gladly given, and you are welcome to come round and see what modern hovers look like any time.


GavinParson - n/a
4-Aug-07, 05:39 AM
If you have got loads of old video, like me!! hows about if i set a Photobucket site to post up all these old memories for all to see??

Simon L

Sounds good. Just got to find them old VHS tapes now. The funniest thing is seeing how "young" everyone looked back then.

Kipmac - n/a
4-Aug-07, 10:12 AM
Yep Gavin you are right.It <u>was </u>a twin thrust duct Goshawk.

I also have a video of the great time we had on the Loire all those years ago.

I am sure Keith Oakley and family will remember it and the bonfire on the island.

My craft you refer to had the 640 Rotax with all of 38.5 HP but nevertheless pulled 220 lbs of thrust. I well recall the race from the back of the grid and Martins expression when I stuffed both thrust fans in a moment of madness.(We shared the craft that weekend)

The craft was not one of our most successful designs as I totally misjudged the route that F1 was likely to take.

Only a few were made.

They were very prone to flipping over in a tight turn due to what we all now recognise as the wrong shape on the side of the hull.

I have loads of photos of moulds and craft etc,

It was from the Goshawk that Paul, over the years and on his own developed the Pintail.

At least one of us got the design right.


atscrase - n/a
4-Aug-07, 04:52 PM
Hi Kevin,

Small world! We can be contacted on 323718. It would be great to to get some advice. Sorry I did not get back to you earlier but we have spent all day working on the hover and I did not think anyone would be around and responding at that time of night!

We have got the engines off, the frame out, seat and controls out. So we can now see the state of the hull. It seems to have had quite a hard life! But I guess if it is 30 plus years old it is not that bad.

Trying to work out what to do with the lift engine. Everything but the piston seems to be there. But I have no idea about sourcing another.

So you can see a visit would be great.



slarman257@aol.com - n/a
4-Aug-07, 08:36 PM
Sounds good. Just got to find them old VHS tapes now. The funniest thing is seeing how "young" everyone looked back then.

surely i don't look any different to how i did 20 odd years ago,

Do i??

Simon L