R/C blimp uses a party balloon for lift

Here’s a really tiny r/c blimp that doesn’t need several cubic feet of Helium to get off the ground.

Instructables user [masynmachien] has been building r/c blimps for over a decade now, and this latest build is meant to have the same specs as this nanoblimp. The build is based on an 11-inch party balloon that can provide about 11 grams of lift. This doesn’t allow for much leeway in terms of weight, so [masymachien] used hacked-up servos for the motors.

The blimp is an exercise in saving weight – just about every component that can be removed from the build is thrown away. The results are pretty impressive. The entire blimp weighs about 10 grams on the ground. [masynmachien] also tried a 14-inch balloon with an 808 key fob camera with very good results.

The blimp looks pretty good when flying around a room. [masymachien] seems to have a lot of control from a minimal component count. You can check out the party blimp in action after the break.

Comments

  1. fakename says:

    One word: awesome.

  2. pRtkL xLr8r says:

    OMG need to annoy cat with this NOW!

  3. pRtkL xLr8r says:

    Even better, tape a needle on the front and have an office war with them, last man standing wins!

  4. qwerty says:

    Yeah, my cat too wants one now!

  5. Hirudinea says:

    I know what I want for Christmas!

  6. neimad says:

    Nice!

  7. nikescar says:

    Use ultra-thin dry condoms to shave even more weight.

    It will also give the blimp a nice powerful silhouette.

  8. Alex says:

    I can’t wait until they figure out that the clown balloons work just as well and have the benefit of being easily formed into shapes both structural and artistic. Then we will see pink pigs flying round our heads with powered flight by wings of white.

    • Charles P. Lamb says:

      I’d be surprised if they work because they have a much higher surface area to volume ratio.

      • Balloonman says:

        Clown balloons, at least small ones used to make balloondoggies, are made of much thicker latex than round party balloons. They won’t even float if filled with helium.

        There is one, however that is referred to as an airship. The dimensions of the airship in the brand I use to make large animals are 6 inches diameter and 46 inches long. It would make a formidable looking missile shaped blimp.

        Makes me want to take apart one of those little airhogs helicopters and hack something like this together.

  9. P. Kevin Parker says:

    I’ll bet it takes some mad skills to solder everything to the bottom of the balloon, and one of those super low heat soldering irons!

  10. therian says:

    anyone have plans for electrolysis with good separation of hydrogen on output(not just brown gas)? this would give unlimited lifting gas for experiments

  11. GameboyRMH says:

    That must be amazingly light. I recall from childhood experiments that it takes 2-3 average-sized helium balloons to lift a Lego minifig.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I used to make flying balloons all the time, but this one is much better because it flies longer than 5 seconds and doesn’t need to be re-inflated after every flight.

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