Self-Propelled Surfboard (Apr, 1950)

Self-Propelled Surfboard

SKIMBOATING—newest fad at Cypress Gardens, Florida—is rapidly outgrowing that novelty classification. It provides you with all the thrills of aquaplaning without making you lug a boat along. Also, you can break down this self-propelled surfboard into three small sections.

Developed by Emil Hansen of Bryn Mawr, Pa., the craft has a 7-1/2-hp outboard engine housed in a watertight aluminum hull. It’s 90 inches long, 24 inches wide and weighs 120 pounds. Top speed is about 30 mph and you steer it with a rudder aft and by shifting your body.

Build A Diving Helmet from a Water Heater (Jan, 1932)

A Diving Helmet from a Water Heater

THEY go down to the sea in old water heaters along the Atlantic coast these days, now that some young man with a leaning toward aquatic sports has proved how easy it is to make an excellent diving helmet from a metal water heater which will enable its wearer to walk comfortably on the sea floor 35 feet and more below the surface. A few feet of garden hose, two pairs of bellows, a couple of valve boxes and a cylindrical metal boiler of the type used in most homes for heating water, are the essentials for building one of these helmets.

Have Fun in a Boat But DON’T DROWN (Jun, 1950)

Have Fun in a Boat But DON’T DROWN

SWIMMIN’ time again, with a world of fun—and some serious hazards, too. As usual there’ll be tipped boats and other horseplay. G. E. Tatum, safety engineer for a public utility, offers common-sense advice on how to have fun and stay alive. In case your boat tips you overboard, Tatum says, rock it to slosh out as much water as possible, then crawl over the stern

U.S. Navy Blimps Learn New Role for Sea Rescues (Mar, 1940)

Seems like that would be a pretty slow rescue…

U.S. Navy Blimps Learn New Role for Sea Rescues
With the aid of new airship inventions, U. S. Navy blimps can now “anchor” ” 100 feet above the sea, and pick up ill sailors or victims of shipwreck. A circular disk called a “drogue,” dropped into the sea at the end of a cable, keeps the craft’s nose pointed steadily into the wind.

Electrocuting Whales and Machine Gunning Sea Lions (Nov, 1931)

BIRGER HOLM-HANSEN, a Norwegian engineer, has invented a device for the instantaneous electrocution of whales. It consists of a small but powerful generator which is carried in the whaleboat, and a flexible, insulated line conveying a current of high voltage to the harpoon. At the in-slant the harpoon hits the whale the current is thrown on and the electric charge shot into the monster.

Fun Under Water (Apr, 1946)

Fun Under Water

War gear of “Frog Men” will create new sport, save lives


OUT of the wealth of atom bombs, flame throwers, booby traps, and other World War II inventions, have come some devices that promise to survive and become indispensable in peace. Among them are oxygen-charged respiratory units, perfected for the Army and Navy for underwater offensives against the enemy. Like DDT and the jeep, these breathing machines will be of service to anyone who learns to use them.

Why Don’t We Build… Underwater Tanks (Dec, 1950)

Why Don’t We Build… Underwater Tanks

We need such a weapon for beachhead invasions … we have already solved its technical problems.

By Frank Tinsley

EVEN at the outset of our World War II campaign of island conquest in the Pacific, it became evident that some form of armor was needed to spearhead landing operations. The old technique of wooden landing barges and surf-spattered Marines was obviously inadequate. To pit unprotected flesh and blood against an array of underwater obstacles, mines and wire entanglements, backed up by well concealed and heavily bunkered machine-gun nests, mortars and artillery, was a murderous waste of expensively trained men.

Weights Keep Ship Bunk Level in Storm, Cut Seasickness (Jul, 1933)

Weights Keep Ship Bunk Level in Storm, Cut Seasickness
SEASICKNESS, that real terror of the sea, which often makes ocean travel an ordeal, is reduced 30 per cent by the development of a new type steamship bunk, inventors claim.

House Boat Is an Old Oil Tank (Jun, 1939)

House Boat Is an Old Oil Tank
Made from an old 20,000-gallon oil tank, an unusual four-ton house boat built by Rene Tatro, of Kankakee, Ill., skims along the water at almost ten miles an hour. Powered by an old automobile engine, the curious craft has twin propellers and is balanced by five steel drums below the water level. Windows were cut out with an acetylene torch.

Gunboats To Fight Shark Menace (Mar, 1935)

This seems like a bit of overkill to me…

Gunboats To Fight Shark Menace
THE gunboats and seaplanes of three nations, England, Holland and Portugal, will soon combine in an attempt to drive dangerous tiger-sharks from their breeding grounds near the Island of Timor. The main weapons used will be torpedos dropped from circling planes and depth bombs released from the gunboats.