Like every kid who saw the movie, I've been looking for the "Back to the Future II" floating skateboard ever since 1989. Unfortunately, I haven't come across anything as capable as Marty McFly's version, however I did find the Hoverboard and Airboard. Oversized, clunky and loud, you can't kick flip these models and they sort of look like lawn mowers, but at least it's a start. Hopefully Mattel, whose logo appeared on the hoverboard in the movie, will release the Back to the Future edition sometime soon. Until then we have the following:
This gas powered hovercraft by Future Horizons is capable of toting a 250+ lb person at around 20mph. Riding three inches above the ground on a skirt of air, the craft hovers over flat surfaces including shallow water. A wired hand controller directs speed and rudder position of the fiberglass unit, turning the board left and right. You can purchase it for $9,000 here.
The Airboard is more scooter than board but still uses Hovercraft air cushion technology to glide above the ground. Like a hovercraft, it uses a fan to propel it forward but you can increase speed by leaning your body weight toward the back of the board. Starting, stopping and steering is also done through weight transfer, like a skate or snowboard so some elementary tricks like a 360 can be nailed. Check out a video of the Airboard in action here. More info at International Robotics. For purchasing details contact Alura Intelligent Products at alura75413 [at] aol [dot] com.
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