Quirky News

  • 21 June 2013, 10:23

Teenager builds a working submarine

Submarine /Rex

An inventive US teenager has built a fully functioning one-man submarine from odds and ends.

Justin Beckerman, 18, from New Jersey, spent six months and nearly 1,300 on his sub which he named The Nautilus.

He has been nicknamed MacGyver, after a fictional secret agent known for his inventive use of everyday items.

The Nautilus is powered by a fishing boat motor and has a body made of lightweight corrugated plastic with a viewing dome converted from a skylight.

It also features ballast tanks, air compressors, sonar, paddles, regulators and valves from an old soda machine, float sensors, four battery systems, a horn, a two-way radio, a PA system, a wireless camera and 200 watts of LED lighting.

"I wanted to see what I could build and figure out how I could build it," said Mr Bickerman who has been tinkering with gadgets almost since he learned to walk.

He has successfully kept it afloat on Lake Hopatcong but the sub has still to make its maiden dive.

But he is confident the 9ft sub, which has safety features including pumps and a breathing hose, can dive to depths of 30ft.

"I'm not nervous, I'm very excited," he said. "I have a safety checklist, just like airplane pilots."