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Scratch-Built "Pontoon Plank" (Inspired by the Snowball)


Sunny Day Park Flyer
"Pontoon Plank" (Inspired by the Snowball)

Inspired by Flitetest's Snowball (Thanks)
As some of us know, earlier today, flitetest's snowball episode came out. Like many I have been aching to fly since last year. I had also seen some other people's ways of coping with the blizzards this year.
My way was to build a pontoon plank. Basically it was a spinoff of the snowball. My yard has a ridiculous amount of trees, making it impossible to fly. But I wanted to scratch build something like the snowball, it was clever. I have a bunch of parts lying around, so I threw together the pontoon plank in between meals.

It's a ground version of the snowball. It has a cardboard plank as the main bit, and uses the edges, not as dihedral, but as rudders. I mostly threw this together but I'll try to describe what I did:

First, I cut out all the parts, I had a piece of a tri-fold from a school project, but anyone could just use a box. I cut 3 inch sides and a 7 inch center portion because I'm using a 7.5 inch prop. I then scored hinges on the vertical panels, which I hot-glued into place, to create roughly squares. Then I installed the servo, glued to a stabilizing piece of pink foam, on a center line, also in line with the hinges. I cut out a "servo horn" out of a piece of basswood about 1 inch by 3 inch, and cut holes in that for the servo and control rods. I then bent some coat hangars and put them on some holes I cut on the sides of the square and a pair of servo horns (made out of a gift card) on the centers of the rudders. I then cut a center fin, glued it into a piece of foam which fit the improvised servo horn and glued that onto the servo horn, leaving room for the control rods. Then I made the motor mount by cutting a piece of pink foam and angling it so the propeller would be angled slightly up. I glued a piece of basswood onto that and glued it centered on the front edge of the plank. I improvised some pontoons/floats on the bottom, you could probably do a better job with what your gut tells you. I again, used scrap electronics which were available to me at the time, and I'll only post their specs after I know it works so I won't mess anyone up.
Either way, Here is the finished product:

Top Down View:
*Covered with plastic wrap

Version 2 Upgrades:
Servo "Horn"
Finished Assembly and Linkage Setup:
Last edited:
I wondered if those snowballs might be fun just scooting around on top of the snow,
like a swamp boat/speed pontoon snow-floater.

But you know what they say: video, or it never happened!

You might want to be careful though?
That looks like it has a lot of motor and might try to get off the ground on you.
Could be a good idea to wear a full-face helmet when it angry wasps right at your nose!!!
(or worse, it could aim right at your pant's zipper, ya' kno?)


Sunny Day Park Flyer
Oh man, the thought of the last but is scary... However, it can't get off the ground, I made it too heavy and with too little of a wing. I wanted to be able to attach winglets in the future so I wanted to somehow keep it flightworthy. And the upward motor angle is to pull it up out of ditches it would encounter in my uneven yard.