Floating through the sky boat with wheels?

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by ColorsWolf, Apr 27, 2013.

  1. ColorsWolf
    Joined: Apr 2013
    Posts: 10
    Likes: 1, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 17
    Location: CA

    ColorsWolf Junior Member

    I plan on getting into the Coast Guard (studying for my ASVAB test right now), becoming a Boatswain's Mate, and learning everything about and serving for 4 years sailing, seafaring, and everything boats.

    I plan to use all my resources provided to me by the Coast Guard to learn everything about building and sailing boats.

    I also plan to use these resources to learn how to build and sail old-world boats without engines and carved by hand perhaps by finding sailors who have this knowledge and are willing to teach it for whatever in exchange.

    I am fascinated by the thought and the engineering of boats, airplanes, airships, motor-vehicles, and wheeled contraptions and constructions and any combination of and of flying boats, cars, and houses.

    I plan on and want to start with a boat base maybe a small boat carved and made almost completely of wood and in a old-world way with sails and paddles with no engine no motor and with an electrical system powered by solar-energy.
    I want to intergrate large wooden wheels into the design of the boat so that when it reaches land it will be able to go onto and travel on land like a old-world wagon.

    The object and the goal is to make a boat that is able to travel on sea, land, and air. The actual boat is probably going to be small as to be lighter and easier to move. No fossil fuels, no pollutents, no animals forced to power or pull this, no oil, no nucleur power, no run-offs, no waste, and no potentially explosive or extremely dangerous chemicals or gases used. Clean, renewable, re-useable, and natural energies and forces used to power and move this.

    I recently started thinking about ways to get it into the air, I don't need anywhere near the amount of space or size of an airship or blimp or dirigable, I've been thinking what if I attach a hot-air ballon or a helium-filled or natural gas or air balloon attached over to the boat it might be doable. The problem with airplane-boats is that that they are usually as far I know powered by an engine or motor that runs of off not-renewable, not non-polluting, not natural fuel, and the design shape is not something I had in mind. I want to somehow once I settle on a design intergrate sea, land, and air attributes in the design so that it can smoothly transition from sea to land to air in any order. I want to make something somewhat small, lightweight, highley moveable, self-sufficient, and a combination of old-world and new-world (modern) design as a somewhat simple and not too overly complicated design.

    Anyone have any other ideas of how to get a boat into the air or is the hot-air balloon a good idea?

    I forgot to mention that I will be living in this boat and this will not just be a hobbie, this will be my house. That is why it can not be just a 'handglider' or a regular 'hot-air balloon with a basket'.

    I was thinking of maybe using some form of composting using secretions from the Human body and other bio-degrading ingrediants and a tube or a series of tubes to power the balloon somehow.

    I was also thinking of placing many propellers around the boat at water level to be turned by the water and when in the air or out of the water turned by the wind to generate energy.
  2. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 147, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    For a balloon I think helium is a safer option than natural gas. It has much more lifting power than hot air.

    However, the lifting power of 1 cubic meter of helium isn't much, slightly less than 1 kg so you'll need a lot of it if the boat has significant weight; a biomass generator is going to be heavy.

    Trying to obtain energy from propellers in the water or when flying in the air will be trying to violate some really solid laws of physics: have you considered solar energy?
  3. Petros
    Joined: Oct 2007
    Posts: 2,936
    Likes: 148, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 1593
    Location: Arlington, WA-USA

    Petros Senior Member

    welcome to the forum.

    Assuming this is not a joke, a seaworthy sailboat will be waaaay too heavy to get in the air. I have designed professionally aircraft, race cars and have designed and built a lot of small boats boats for fun. there are reasons such "steam punk" contraptions do not exist. they can not be made viable, even with a powerful fuel burning engine.

    It might be feasible to design a flat bed truck (run it on recycled vegetable oil) that will take a 20 to 24 ft sailboat on the back so you can have a "mobile home" of sorts (a scow type hull would give you the most living space for the length). but making it fly by any means is not even a reasonable option. It takes a lot of power to get something of that size into the air. Even if you could build a hot air or helium balloon big enough to lift it you would be at the mercy of the wind and weather, only being able to go down wind and hopefully find a large enough place to land such a contraption. The amount of resources it would take to lift such a contraption is very large, consider how much costly synthetic fabric it would take. I just do not see this as feasible or useful.

    There are many people that have lived on and sailed all around the world many times over in a pure sailboat without a motor or engine, just oars for moving around without wind. This was the only way even large sailing cargo ships used to move passengers and cargo around the world before there were viable engines. You can not be in a hurry and sometimes have to take the "long way around" to get favorable conditions, but it can be done.

    there is currently no way to move "living quarters" around on land without consuming some sort of fuel. electric cars just put the fuel burning off at the power station. It would takes weeks of charging from solar panels to move it just a few miles at a time. You can travel by walking or riding a bike with lightweight camping gear along, but you will still need to eat and drink food to get to where you are going. You would need a cabin large enough to sleep in and get out of the weather, that means a hull at least 4-5 ft wide and 8 to 10 ft long (for a reasonable sailboat 7x20' would be the very minimum I would guess, though there are a few that have lived on a 4x12' boat).

    Also consider the cost of food on these types of trips. If you are sailing a modern and efficient sailboat from California to Japan, it would take you about 3-4 months, a bit less if you are lucky. the very cheapest food would cost you about $2000 for such a trip. It takes resources to grow the food and deliver it to market. but for about half that cost you can fly to Japan in one day, using less resources than sailing or rowing there. The boat will also need repairs and maintenance since it will wear our as you use it, so there is at least another $1000-2000 in operating costs. this is not even counting your clothes, medical care, etc. You do not have enough waking hours in your life to grow your own food, build and maintain your own boat (from "found" materials), and travel to far off places. Just sitting in one place means you need food, water, clothing, shelter...all that costs resources to bring you.

    There is not really any "zero" impact ways to travel without spending your own money or depending on others for assistance and charity.
  4. Leo Lazauskas
    Joined: Jan 2002
    Posts: 2,696
    Likes: 151, Points: 63, Legacy Rep: 2229
    Location: Adelaide, South Australia

    Leo Lazauskas Senior Member

    Make sure that you study some maths, physics, and chemistry: i.e. the
    fundamentals of engineering.
    Once you have some proficiency at these subjects, you will be able to do
    back-of-the-envelope calculations to assess whether your ideas are viable or

    Welcome, and good luck!
  5. whitepointer23

    whitepointer23 Previous Member

    you need to get access to alien technology and copy their power systems then you can design the boat,house,car, plane around it. try sneaking into area 51, I hear there maybe some space craft there.
  6. Kailani
    Joined: Apr 2013
    Posts: 113
    Likes: 8, Points: 18, Legacy Rep: 59
    Location: Hawaii

    Kailani Senior Member

    A flying inflatable is the only flying boat I know of

  7. NoEyeDeer
    Joined: Jun 2010
    Posts: 983
    Likes: 32, Points: 28, Legacy Rep: 300
    Location: Australia

    NoEyeDeer Senior Member

    :D That might work. Petros was on the money with the steampunk reference too. The OP doesn't seem to realise that steampunk is fiction.
  8. waikikin
    Joined: Jan 2006
    Posts: 2,426
    Likes: 172, Points: 73, Legacy Rep: 871
    Location: Australia

    waikikin Senior Member

    Study everything the oracle Kevin has done here............... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Waterworld .... & here.... http://www.metacafe.com/watch/an-5m...aving_enola_and_mariner_with_hot_air_balloon/

    Whatever is missing from there you can find in Alby Mangels "World Safari" Movies... like this..... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_JFg6G-a1Q

    Also read "South Sea Vagabonds" by John Wray....... http://www.greenaway.co.nz/Library/NZ_Outside_Johnny_Wray_and_Ngataki_Greenaway.pdf .... & here... http://www.amazon.com/gp/offer-listing/0246133791/ref=dp_olp_used?ie=UTF8&condition=used

    So, from fiction can come fact..................;)
  9. daiquiri
    Joined: May 2004
    Posts: 5,372
    Likes: 256, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3380
    Location: Italy (Garda Lake) and Croatia (Istria)

    daiquiri Engineering and Design

    I think that a psychological evaluation of candidates is a part of the selection process for the admission to the Coast Guard Academy.

    My advice is to not tell them about this idea.
    2 people like this.
  10. PAR
    Joined: Nov 2003
    Posts: 19,133
    Likes: 494, Points: 93, Legacy Rep: 3967
    Location: Eustis, FL

    PAR Yacht Designer/Builder

    You made my morning Slavi . . . I'm often the blunt force trauma, caressing these types of egos, but you did my first cup of coffee good.
  11. ancient kayaker
    Joined: Aug 2006
    Posts: 3,497
    Likes: 147, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 2291
    Location: Alliston, Ontario, Canada

    ancient kayaker aka Terry Haines

    Dealing with put-downs is just one of the challenges of life. You're starting with an reasonable goal (ASVAB) at least. Good luck ColorsWolf, I hope some of your dreams turn out for you. I'm older than most of these guys but I can still recall the dreams of younger days, and Ca is one of the great places for dreams -

  12. Waterwitch
    Joined: Oct 2012
    Posts: 133
    Likes: 30, Points: 28, Legacy Rep: 20
    Location: North East USA

    Waterwitch Senior Member

    There are several traditional wooden boatbuilding schools around the country including the Arques school in Sausalito CA. http://www.arqueschl.org/
    There are wind and water powered generators for sail boats too that you can look into.
  13. WestVanHan
    Joined: Aug 2009
    Posts: 1,374
    Likes: 56, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 746
    Location: Vancouver

    WestVanHan Not a Senior Member

    Hobie cat with a tent on it,pedal powered and able to hook up to your mountain bike. Hang it under a balloon,BTW you'll need several hundred cubic meters.

    Eat lots of beans and stay away from the Beano.
  14. ColorsWolf
    Joined: Apr 2013
    Posts: 10
    Likes: 1, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 17
    Location: CA

    ColorsWolf Junior Member

    Thank you for everything!~

    Thank you all for all the replies, this is the first time I have gotten more actual helpful answers than insults!~ ^_^

    Thank you ssoooo much!~ ;D

    I don't know if I am allowed to post links on this forum but if you do a search for "hot-air balloon attached to a boat" on bing and click on the link "Flying Boat Attached to Balloons - Womens9" you'll come to a article and a video of a man who successfully attached a lot of balloons to a small boat or a dingy I think it is called and flew. This is very good news to me, because it says to me that this concept is possible in a small-scale form.

    I don't need a big stove or a huge frigerator, the electricity from solar power is mainly for my computer, maybe a small compact fridge you see in college, a plug-in skillet or hot-plate cook thing, the wind blades would be very small designed so even the smallest bit of wind could generate some energy, maybe instead of putting the wind blades at water level I could instead use tiny water wheels to harness hydro power or have them built in with a water purification system that takes in the sea water and turns it into fresh water. Just throwing around some ideas.

    I wouldn't use any engine or motor to travel on land, I thought sail-power might be doable or row power as long as it rolled. The thought is to make something extremely light yet bouyant yet strong enough not for someone not to break into.
    Last edited: May 2, 2013

  15. alan white
    Joined: Mar 2007
    Posts: 3,731
    Likes: 122, Points: 0, Legacy Rep: 1404
    Location: maine

    alan white Senior Member

    Reminds me I could use a cup of coffee...
Forum posts represent the experience, opinion, and view of individual users. Boat Design Net does not necessarily endorse nor share the view of each individual post.
When making potentially dangerous or financial decisions, always employ and consult appropriate professionals. Your circumstances or experience may be different.