December 21, 2002
Previous | Next


None Could Live Without

On Tuesday, Nick and I built a hovercraft in his garage. It was pretty slick. A piece of plywood, a piece of plastic and the vac part of a shop-vac is all it takes to lift a person. I was expecting a little more work, but we did some research and found this simple model on a tv science show for kids. Because it runs on a shop-vac, we had to keep it plugged in to float. It was fun in Nick's garage for a little while, but when that got old we drove around town trying to find an outdoor outlet that wasn't on private property. We found some at the park and we were pretty pleased because it was right between a basketball court, where we could ride on the cement, and a grassy area, where we could ride on the grass. Unfortunately, we got our hovercraft out and plugged it in only to find that the power was shut off or something. No fun. We went back to Nick's house and rode it down the ramp in the back of his house until the plastic ripped and we had to re-do it. We sliced up some tubing and stapled it to around the edges to protect the plastic. By that time it was dark out, so we gave up or somthing.

Some more than others

Nick is the one on the left. He's big on projects like this. He made night-vision goggles once with a tiny infrared camera and a head-mounted video screen that he bought on the internet. In the summer after my senior year, we were planning to build an amphibious car from an old car of his. Or maybe from my parents' van, I'm not really sure. It never happened, although we did begin work on a miniature pool table. The original plan was to have something that would fold up into a briefcase, but I think at some point we decided that the crease where it folded would cause problems during play. Instead, we cut out a good-sized, but small for a pool table, piece of slate and cut up some old felt that they had taken off their real pool table. Then, we cut out a frame for it from wood lying around his garage and made a nifty bag for the pool balls. The balls were some sort of novelty miniature pool balls, and were the foundation for the whole project. We had all the pieces ready, but I'm not sure if we ever finished it. Parts of it got glued together I know, and it seems like we even took it to school one day and played there. For some reason, though, I'm fairly convinced that things were left undone.