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Giant air hockey

Bigger is better
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Take a large, ice hockey sized arena with many many air holes in the floor. Put a super-powerful air compressor under the floor that shoots air up through the holes. Presto! A giant air hockey table for man-sized games of air hockey. Sit in those concave plastic sledding discs and cruise around on the cushion of air trying to score goals on your opponent. Great for team games and general bumper car style mayhem.

(This idea is an offshoot from annotations on the Vacuum Floor idea).

PotatoStew, Dec 13 2000

Vacuum floor http://www.halfbake...idea/Vacuum_20Floor
[PotatoStew, Dec 13 2000, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Personal Hovercraft http://www.bbc.co.u...29_hoverboard.shtml
From BBC's "Tomorrow's World" [jutta, Dec 13 2000]

Flying Saucers http://www.yesterland.com/saucers.html
From Disneyland, circa 1961. [StarChaser, Dec 13 2000, last modified Oct 05 2004]

Human Table Hockey http://www.halfbake...an_20Table_20Hockey
Same idea? [phoenix, Oct 04 2004, last modified Oct 05 2004]

"life sized" air hockey http://news.discove...key-rink-140317.htm
[theircompetitor, Mar 17 2014]

[link]






       How would you steer? Body english?
centauri, Dec 13 2000
  

       It wouldn't even necessarily have to have a motorized wheel. It could just be a padded stick, used to push off the floor with, sort of like a canoe paddle.
PotatoStew, Dec 14 2000
  

       I really like the idea of holding a stick with a spinning wheel on the end. Given that the disc (that you're sitting on) is free to rotate, just moving your steering-stick around in the air would be enough to start you moving (think conservation of angular momentum, gyroscopes, that kind of thing).
vincebowdren, Dec 14 2000
  

       Same concept, different game : Life Sized Pinball! (not necessarily air cushioned, but there must be a way...)   

       You'd get sick with all the spinning though (and if you didn't spin, the ball wouldn't move, try spinning a raw egg...)
Detly, Dec 14 2000
  

       can I vote for this more than once?
absterge, Dec 14 2000
  

       Would love to see this. Would love to be in this. Would love to see this in the olympics. Lets start one!
barnzenen, Dec 14 2000
  

       Good idea for spinning the wheel, ravenswood. If necessary, a small battery pack could sit inside the disc, with a cord attached to the stick. Or if the cord might get in the way, then the batteries could go inside the stick as you suggested.   

       What happens if a player is knocked out of his or her disc? I think they should be removed from the game temporarily (ala hockey penalties).
PotatoStew, Dec 16 2000
  

       Baked, at least as 'ride on air hockey'...
StarChaser, Feb 11 2001
  

       Nobody has mentioned the puck except UB. Would the puck be floating too or would it stay on the ground level? If it is suppose to stay on ground level what happens when it hits a vent, it shoots up into the players faces or above their heads and that would make for a hard game to play. If it's suppose to float how would it maintain an even plane of floatation? Would it be as large as the discs the players are on and weighted so that it doesn't float away?
barnzenen, Aug 24 2001
  

       Details, details, details. Why yes - the puck would float. I suppose it ought to be made of some heavy metal to facillitate the size thing without being so heavy as to be cause shock waves to travel along length of stick, let alone break it.
thumbwax, Aug 24 2001
  

       Actually, ravenswood, in one of his annotations, suggested that there is no puck... you score by hurling yourself through the goal. So basically there are as many pucks as there are players.
PotatoStew, Aug 24 2001
  

       I love this one... not that I would want to play the spiky version...
RobertKidney, Aug 24 2001
  

       I think this is great. We should have a life sized arcade games olympics some time.
kaz, Aug 24 2001
  

       ive never seen any holes in an air-hockey table so i always assumed that it awas done with magnets   

       for an extra-violent-blood-sport-floor-destroying version you could replace the rubber wheel with a power saw (hehehe...hahaha...HAHAHA...BWAAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHHAAHHAH...ok im done)   

       the "air board" is bigger than i thought it would be - i imagined it as simply a wakeboard with a rubber air skirt, a fan and a simple hand throttle (connecting the intake to the skirt to the throttle to give an inverse proportional relationship - this should give it a constant altitude until the enginee is stopped) actually i feel like i should build one right now but i have no materials or engineering knowledge
chud, Sep 15 2001
  

       Since Sorta Claus has just very kindly given me one of these for Christmas, I thought I'd better float on over and add a croissant. So far no-one can be persuaded to be goalkeeper, but a quick game or two of twister should take care of that!
egbert, Dec 25 2002
  

       Kinda like bumper cars with hovercrafts...
croissantz, Dec 31 2004
  

       But what the heck. (+)
croissantz, Dec 31 2004
  

       In roller hockey there is always the problem of trying to reduce the friction between a puck and the floor to simulate the friction of ice hockey. This could be yet another solution to that problem.
Goesta Berling, Jan 01 2005
  

       To go back to the stick and wheel idea, I'd suggest something based on a weed-whip.   

       Why not attach the drive motor to the disc like an outboard on a boat, with most of the motor's weight resting on the wheel.   

       You could also have a bumper ring around the disc with vanes between the disc and ring to use the lift air coming from under and around the disc for control.
triumphrider, Mar 17 2005
  
      
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