How to make a hoverboard at home? A hoverboard, also called a self-balancing scooter, is a much-awaited invention. Ideally, people wanted something like floating skateboards without wheels, but that is impossible with the current level of technology. Hoverboards are the next best thing, even though they don’t really hover.
When you went online or to a snazzy electronics store, you must have already seen all sorts of cool hoverboards. There are ones with lights, all sorts of sensors, and some even have Bluetooth speakers! Some are so futuristic that it can be hard to believe your eyes.
Since you’re reading this article, you probably found them to be too expensive. Or perhaps you are just someone who likes to build things and tinker around with tools. Whatever your motivation, here is a guide which shows you how to DIY your very own hoverboard.
The good news is that you don’t need to have an engineering degree or work with machines in order to build a hoverboard. It is pretty easy to make a board at home as long as you are at least a little familiar with common tools. For anything you don’t know, you can always refer back to this guide.
Things You Will Need
Safety always comes first, so you will have to make sure that your board is made of a strong metal alloy and the wheels are of a good quality of rubber.
A flimsy board is never a good idea because then it is easy for the board to short-circuit, catch on fire, or make you fall repeatedly.
To build a decent hoverboard, you are going to need materials which are strong and would last for some time. If you can find some good quality scraps, use them. Not only will you be helping the environment by recycling, but you will also be doing a fun and useful project.
Alright, so when it comes to tools you are going to need the following:
- Back Saw (1)
- Screwdriver (1-3)
- Drill (1)
- Measuring Tape or Ruler (1)
- Pencil (1)
- Notepad (1) (for writing down measurements)
- Sandpaper (2”x2” piece) (1)
- Scissors (1 pair)
- Electrical Tape (optional)
Here is a list of the materials which will be used to make the hoverboard:
- 2” x 2” Plywood (1)
- ½ Inch of Plywood (1)
- ¼ Inch of Plywood (1)
- Wood Glue
- Duct Tape
- Copper wires
- Big rubber bands
- Needle nose pliers
- Small rubber wheels of 1” diameter (several)
- 12” wheels (2)
- 12 Volt Battery (1)
- 12 Amp Battery (1)
- 24 Volt Motors of a Scooter (2)
A Word of Advice for Your Tools and Hoverboard Materials
When you are measuring anything, be sure to make a note of it somewhere- it could be in a notepad or even on your phone. Always have measurements for every piece to avoid any mistakes.
The plywood which makes the base can be as thick as you want. It is good to have thicker wood for better balance and to make your board last longer. As long as it supports your weight, though, any thickness should work.
The wheels that you use should have a tough rubber on them. This is because thinner and flimsier rubber tends to overheat and burn quickly. You want to avoid any injuries.
Some of you may be new to using hand tools. If your drill, for example, is old and rusty, the chances are that you might get hurt. Same goes with the saw and the scissors. Make sure the glue, tape, and epoxy are fresh enough that you hoverboard won’t break apart after a couple of uses.
To ensure your safety while building and using the hoverboard, we recommend that you check your tools and materials before starting. Avoid dollar-store quality items because they don’t last long. Get your materials from a proper hardware store.
Steps to Build Your Own Hoverboard at Home
- Let’s start with the easiest Take the 2 x 2 piece of plywood and shape it so that your feet can comfortably fit on it. Any shape is fine, but it’s best to keep it simple to avoid wasting time and wood. Leave enough space for the holes for wheels and the battery. You can sand it later, when everything has been assembled, with the help of sandpaper to even out the wood.
- Take the two big wheels and drill holes in your board. The holes should be slightly thicker than the axle of the wheels. Measure the axle first and make marks with a pencil
- Take the two thinner pieces of plywood (the ½ and ¼ inch ones) and create a frame for your board. This will give your hoverboard some structure. Measure everything carefully but don’t assemble anything yet.
- Cut out a square near the back of the board. It should be big enough to fit the battery box. Before cutting, you need to measure and plan your battery box. It should not cut through the wheel holes, and there should be enough space for your feet.
- Make a box from the thinner wood so that it fits the battery. Use the 2 x 2 wood to make the top and bottom of the box for stability. Use the slot you just cut out and make sure the box is slightly larger than the hole. This way, you will be able to screw it in later.
- After you have finished measuring and cutting out the parts for the board, you will start working on the thing that makes it run- the electrical bits! This consists of the motor and the battery.
- To make the motor, get small solid rubber wheels and drill a hole through them. Then drill a hole through the belt of the motor’s axle.
- Attach the wheels to the motor axle with the help of epoxy. Let it dry properly before working with it further.
- Secure the motor axel by inserting a wire through the holes of the wheels and the axle, and wrap the wire on the belt gear.
- Next, make a battery using the 12V and 12A parts. This is a very basic skill, but don’t worry if you are not familiar with batteries. There are many tutorials online which will show you how to make a simple
- Take some wood glue to attach the thin frame pieces you had cut out earlier, to the main board. Make sure the pieces fit perfectly so you won’t stumble on them when you are riding the hoverboard. Let the glue dry completely before moving to the next step.
- Screw in the battery box. Put the box under the square slot you had cut earlier. Take some screws and drill holes so that you can attach the box to the board. The box should rest at the bottom of the board.
- Take another small wheel. It will act as the balancing wheel, as it will help the board stabilize itself. Attach this to a small piece of the 2 x 2 plywood. Take the piece of wood with the wheel and attach it to the back, under the board. It is placed so that it can stop the back wheel from rotating too much. This will help give your board some balance.
- Now, attach the two big wheels to the holes. Fill each end of the holes with epoxy and hold the wheels for 5 minutes. Then, screw the axels into each side of the hole. Keep the board out to dry for 24-36 hours. Don’t disturb the board so that the epoxy can set properly.
- Meanwhile, start working on the motor brackets. These are used to mount the motor onto the hoverboard. Use a piece of wood or dowel as a pivot and attach it to the end of the bracket. The motor bracket should hold the motor and axle against the wheel.
- Once the epoxy has set, you can attach the motors. To attach the motors, glue and epoxy will not be helpful. You will have to get duct tape. Attach the motor at the bottom of the hoverboard, between the wheels. See that the wheels and the motor should be in a straight line, or as straight as possible.
- Add a switch to the battery and one to the motor. This is to give you enough control over your board.
- Using the wire and pliers, wire the battery and motor in a parallel circuit. In case you don’t know what a parallel circuit is, you can consult a physics textbook or look it up online. It is the simplest way of connecting a battery to an output unit.
- Before finishing off the hoverboard, test the motor and battery circuit so that it works properly. There should be no sparks, overheating or any strange noises. If there are any issues, avoid using the hoverboard for your own Fix the electrical issues before proceeding further.
- Once the battery and motor start working properly, screw on the top of the battery slot. Do not use glue or epoxy. You want to be able to change or fix the battery if there is an issue.
- Your hoverboard is almost ready by now. To really make it work smoothly, add some rubber bands! Add one or two bands attaching the motor’s bracket to the wheel’s axle. This will make the motor press against the wheel.
- In case the motor doesn’t hold the wheel against itself, you can add more bands.
- Your hoverboard is ready to be ridden!
- (Optional) You can add wood varnish after you have smoothed out the board with sandpaper. You can also paint your hoverboard with any color(s) you want!
Always remember that safety is the most important part of any project, so wear thick gloves and goggles when you are handling sharp objects such as a hand saw. If you feel like the wood is heating up under your feet, stop immediately and make sure there isn’t too much friction between the motor and the wheel.
It can be a little intimidating to build something as cool as a hoverboard, but it only requires some basic hardware knowledge. You can build it as a summer craft project with your children or make one for yourself. This is a fun DIY if you want to try your hand at woodworking and basic electric assembly.
Have fun riding your new home-made hoverboard!