When Jason Woods was 19 and living on his own for the first time, he decided to buy an old ski boat. The 1969 Sportster was perfect for driving girls around Lake Berryessa, near his home in Napa, California, but after a few months, he found that transporting and storing a 16-foot boat was an expensive hassle. He wanted a craft that he could toss in his car and carry to the water. Unfortunately, no options existed.
So Woods-who, at Napa's New Technology High School, learned how make his own rockets and build battle-ready robots-came upwith the idea for the Kymera. The concept was a carbon-fiber body board powered by a small engine that would propel a rider at exhilarating speeds while displacing roughly half an inch of water. Vacationers could explore waterways without a boat, and because the Kymera would weigh only 35 pounds, one person could haul it to the water.
His fourth rebuild [pictured above] puts out 5 horsepower and gets up to 15 mph. It also incorporates carbon fiber and handlebars. Button-controlled servos move the jet pump back and forth, but steering is mostly a matter of leaning from side to side. When the rider cuts the throttle, the Kymera drifts to a stop.The next model, under construction now, will use a hybrid electric-propane four-stroke engine and reach 25 mph. "I'm already getting e-mails from guys who want to do whitewater with it," he says. "I've proved the concept; now I want to find the extreme. The final version will fall in between."
Woods estimates that with mass-produced parts, a basic model could retail for $1,000. But he says it's not the market potential that keeps him going. It's the idea that everyday people would finally have their own way of getting out on the water. "What would make it worth it," he says, "is just seeing it on the roof of someone's car, headed for the lake."
Name: Kymera Body Board
Inventor: Jason Woods
Time: 8 years
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Congrats on your award, Jason. 8 years seems like a long tome to develop your prototype. At least that's what others were saying about a similar (PWC) product that I had been developing for as many years.
Woah! This is a super toxic and outdated invention which would have been suitable in the 1970's, but not today. Are you guys serious!?
The world doesn't need any more recreational devices which blow lots of toxic fumes into the air (and even more oil into the water, since it uses a 2-stroke engine) while making a ton of noise, especially in nature.
Jason Woods must really hate these very same "woods" if he thinks this is a good idea, or he must be very ignorant to even think of this thing in today's fragile environment.
A big thumbs down, also to those who think this is worth an award. Sorry.
I think it's pretty sweet
I understand and agree fully JPnyc, however if you take into account the pollution for a 26cc two stroke vs a 800cc+ direct injected jetski you'll find the overall emissions are far less. This also doesn't take into account the emissions savings given the ability to transport Kymera to the lake in your compact car vs. 10mpg truck.
Never the less that still wasn't good enough so as mentioned in the article "The next model, under construction now, will use a hybrid electric-propane four-stroke engine and reach 25 mph" Also soon to be released the new Kymera Ion, all electric w/ solar charging.
GREAT IDEA! I've been wondering why someone didn't do this for a long time!
Environmentalist are always alarmists but short on logic. I think it's a great idea, especially the electric version.
I think that would be useful for life guards and use in
Wonder if anybody has tried to stand up on one of these rather than laying prone? Could probably set up a foot controlled rig
This is indeed a cool water toy and I look forward to seeing alternative power version, I don't see how it solves the initial problem:
"...driving girls around Lake Berryessa, near his home in Napa, California, but after a few months, he found that transporting and storing a 16-foot boat was an expensive hassle."
Unless of course the girls are ready to throw on a wetsuit...
not all environmentalist are alarmists, however, JPnyc obviously didn''t bother to read the whole article, recreational vehicles are not going anywhere (for at least a little while), this seems like a cool vehicle with a low environmental impact
Great! A new and cheaper way for illegals to smuggle drugs in our country!
Cool idea, but it's one that's pretty much already on the market? This is one of a handful of companies making Jet Kayaks/surf boards. www.jet-kayak.com/jetkayakpowersurf.html
you know, i was actually starting to like this idea... until i heard JPnyc's comment...that ruined it for me.
not that i believe it, you know...there's always a pessimist who shuns an idea, and when the maker on that idea becomes a millionaire, i laugh in the pessimists face
Wish The Would Sell Those Seems Like Fun To Ride On
Thank you all for your support... and the pessimism lol. (It helps fuel the passion ya know?) To answer the question about Jet Kayaks/surf boards, the key difference is every Jet-Gizmo ever built dating back to the 60's has been in the 200lb+ range. Way to heavy to cary, and slower than their jetski cousins (and just as or more expensive). At that weight the novelty of the form factor is the only selling point. Kymera however at 35lbs can easily be hand carried, and eliminates, Tow vehicles, Trailers, launch ramps (fees), Storage issues (fees), High fuel costs (tow vehicle + craft), and the device its self will cost a fraction of any of its predecessors. The driving force right now is getting it into the hands of the search and rescue teams that have contacted me with chilling stories of tragic situations, that have impressed on me just how important this really is.
I may have missed it in the article. But what is the fuel capacity? Is it the tiny fuel tank used by lawn care equipment? Or did you install a larger one?
Also, is the 35lb weight a dry (no fuel) or wet (fuel) weight?
Brilliant idea! Can't wait. Don't ignore the criticism, but don't take it to heart. You are absolutely right when weighing the environmental impact, and I'm sure the competitive drive will spur you to evolve your product to ever new heights. Personally, I can't wait to see where you go with this.
very similar to a powerski jetboard. just a bit simpler and lighter
Powerski is awesome, but it weighs 198lbs..at that weight it might as well be 500lbs. There also the price tag around $10,000...
On fuel capacity, its around a half a gallon, and the weight of 32lbs was with a mostly full tank. But, even topped off the difference is minimal. The new version with a much more powerful engine will have a .85 gallon tank but can easily be scaled up to run longer. The propane version is another matter all together.
Great invention and looks like a lot of fun. Here in Newe Zealand we thrive on water activities and there are boats and Jet Ski's galore. I would love to promote your product here in New Zealand and perhaps Australia. Let me know your thoughts. Huge market here. Cheers - JP.