Hot Air Balloon : LUSENET : Junkyard Wars : One Thread

I think designing a hot air balloon would would be a simple but exciting project illustrating basic principles of weight to lift ratios, as well as the practical use of sewing. Lots of room for duct tape here too. Challenge can be based on height, time afloat and distance.

One other thing... BRING BACK GEO.. BRING BACK GEO... : )

-- Deborah Deegan (, March 13, 2001


I don't know, Deborah- That would take A LOT of sewing, not to mention a construction area large enough to lay out the balloon ahead of time for cutting and fitting. Sewing fabric that large would reqwuire the enitre team to pitch in to help move the fabric smoothly through the sewing machine, leaving no one to build the gondola or rig the burners. Then again, I have seen some amazing one person hot air balloons that are worn like backpacks. So maybe this would work!

-- Chip Haynes (, March 21, 2001.

You can't send people up in a JYW creation, simply too dangerous. The balloons would have to be much scaled down versions with some other cargo.


-- Max (, March 21, 2001.

Max- What about the glider competition? I'd feel much safer in a JYW-built hot air balloon than I would in that metal canard contraption. (At least a failed hot air balloon would be pretty close to being a parachute!) And as for the show's insurance agent screaming "NO WAY!", how about those submarines, diving helmets, amphibious vehicles, marine salvage cranes and power boats? Never forget the first law of submarining: What up must come down, but what goes down does not necessarily have to come back up. Hot air balloons are not nearly THAT dangerous!

-- Chip Haynes (, March 22, 2001.

I'm not sure I would have piloted that rigid winged glider... gravity is one of those things that leave little or no room for error. I'm guessing that underwater episodes require the team members to be trained divers, and I'm also guessing that there are some type of a "rescue crew" on episodes where there is the chance of injury. Asking someone to pilot a JYW hot air balloon seems radical in my book. Asking a team to even build a functioning hot air balloon large enough to lift a person in 10 hours also seems a bit much... the balloon itself would be a major task, then you need a fuel source, burners, controls...


-- Max (, March 22, 2001.

Max- I think we can pretty much assume that the JYW producers weren't going to let that metal glider get that far off the ground- and it didn't. Did they control the speed of the take up spool on that powered cable? Or was the thing just that heavy? Either way, no one got hurt. And yes, I do recall seeing divers around the submarines, salvage cranes and diving bells. No need to have anyone hurt for the sake of television. They can leave that to Mark Burnett. (Eco-Challenge, Survivor, etc.) And having done a bit of sewing in my time, I still say that would be the most difficult and time-consuming part of making a hot air balloon.

-- Chip Haynes (, March 22, 2001.

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