Hovercraft Plans - Viper Cruiser

Viper Cruiser Hovercraft

The Viper Cruiser Hovercraft is our DIY 4 person plans/kit design ideal for recreational use.


The Viper Cruiser was designed in 1996 as a light offshore performance cruiser. The design has since evolved over 20 years and still remains the most advanced small plywood kit on the market.

The Viper Cruiser design shape flows through all the present Viper production range. It is a practical hovercraft offering outstanding performance and safety.

The Viper Cruiser is designed for the "do-it-yourselfer" who would like to build his own hovercraft hull using our kit parts, or optionally use his own engine and parts. It is a plywood/foam sandwich version of our early popular Viper 4 model hull. By using the our kit components, you will be using the same power module and fit out components that we presently use on our Viper 4 series 2 and Viper 4S series 2 hovercraft.

The Viper Cruiser builder makes the hull from marine plywood using a traditional "stitch and glue" method. There are no stringers or complex internal structure. This light weight, monocoque design achieves its strength by using a plywood foam sandwich, integrated foam fill buoyancy compartments and localised Kevlar reinforcement. The hull is surprisingly light, but very strong, buoyant and safe.

The Viper Cruiser plan/assembly manual explains in a step by step process how to cut out, assemble and fit out a Viper Cruiser Hull. The manual is written in layman's terms and includes hundreds of drawings to assist each stage of the build. The plans do not include drawings to build some items such as the steering shaft, the drive system, fan duct or rudders. These items are included in the Viper Cruiser Kit.

The Viper Cruiser is a Plans/Kit Hovercraft. It is supplied as Plans and Kit components. More information may be found on the following links :

Viper Cruiser Plans
Viper Cruiser kits
Why plywood
Photo gallery

Engine choices

The standard Viper Cruiser kit engines are either a 55hp 3202V/E air cooled Hirth, 65hp air cooled 3203V/ES Hirth or 64hp water cooled UL Rotax, You can alternatively use a variety of new or used engines ranging from 35hp to 100hp. These include but not limited to:

  • All Hirth 2 or 4 cylinder engines from 40 - 100hp
  • Rotax 447 to 583 two cylinder engines
  • Most Yamaha, Rotax and polaris snow mobile engines
  • Subaru 1600cc to 2200cc (decreased payload capacity - interior modifications required)
  • VW (early) 1600cc to 2000cc (decreased payload capacity - interior modifications required)
  • Vanguard or Briggs and Stratton 35hp (decreased payload capacity)

Viper Cruiser Hovercraft

Viper Cruiser Hovercraft


To meet the builders personal needs, the Viper Cruiser can be extended to cater for different operational parameters and additional payload. The design can also be adapted to incorporate separate lift by using our optional lift and thrust duct kits.

Viper Cruiser Features

  • Ability to travel over water, grass, sand, mud flats, ice and snow
  • Quiet and efficient
  • Capacity to seat four persons
  • Excellent performance in rough, uneven ground or water, waves, swell and moderate winds
  • In-line seating with simple handle bar controls
  • Excellent driving position with easy control of pitch and roll by weight shift
  • Simple to build
  • Strong, lightweight, Epoxy/Plywood/Foam sandwich construction
  • Significant positive buoyancy
  • Enclosed electrical system
  • Enclosed and vented fuel system
  • Individually pressurized extended segment skirting
  • Single engine and fan, providing integrated lift and thrust
  • Simple power module containing the engine, transmission, fan, duct and rudders as a single unit
  • Sealed engine air-intake filtration system
  • Modifiable to suit individual needs

Goulburn. N.S.W. 2580 Australia
Ph: +61 418649350

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