Back to the Future Hoverboard Prop Replica Build-up

Ever since “Back to the Future II” I’ve wanted a hoverboard. Who wouldn’t? They’re extremely cool. The prop itself is a fun design, and I figured it’d go great with my growing prop collection. Rumor has it that Mattel is going to market a licensed replica this year, but like all licensed prop replicas it will be WAAY out of my budget.

Members of the Replica Props Forum ( have posted dimensions and even downloadable, printable graphics to help build your own. To really build a nice one, some of the parts should be machined and molded/cast or vacuum-formed, but I wanted to do this “on the cheap”. So, here goes.

I should have taken more pics from the beginning, but here goes. I started by creating a custom paper size for my inkjet of 8.5″ x 26.9″ (the longest it would let me make it) and printing the graphics on thin posterboard/cardstock cut to 8.5″x28″. Because of the restriction in length, I had to scale the board down slightly. I then 2 pieces of 1/4″ foamcore to the correct dimensions, then 2 more 1/2″ shorter and narrower. I then laminated these together with the 2 full-size pieces in the middle, with the 2 smaller pieces on top and bottom to allow me to taper the board. I filled in the taper with Elmer’s wood filler, cut the angle for the tailkick, glued it back together, and glued on the graphics. Basic board complete:

For the magnets, I found these tapered plastic bowls at the dollar store for 2/$1.00:

I cut the bottom 1/2″ off, and cut a piece of plexiglass to fill in the top:

After some gluing, filling, and sanding. Unfortunately they’re a bit larger than they should be (about 6″ at the bottom) but it’ll work for this build.

I cut the base of the magnets from styrene:

I then built the clamp pieces from styrene and disposable plastic plates. I filled in behind the plastic plate pieces to give the piece strength.

I made the center clamp piece from 2 pieces of 1/8″ styrene (glued together) and used a 1/2″ countersink bit for the holes:

And here’s a dry test-fit on the board:

Still some paint work to do, then I’ll tackle the top of the board with the velcro, foot disc thing with the pink fuzzy stuff, etc.

I realize it isn’t perfect, but total cost breaks down like such:

2 pieces foamcore $6.00
plastic bowls $1.00
plastic plates $1.00
pink paint $3.89
primer $0.96
plexiglass scrap $0.00
2 tubes wood filler $6.00
clearcoat $3.89
thin posterboard $1.96
spray adhesive $4.96
1/8″ styrene scrap $0.00

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