Bionic Dolphin inventor Tom “Doc” Rowe tests his latest creation.
Your basic backyard in rural Northern California. Well, not quite. How many people do you know with a Bionic Killer Whale on a trailer?
Todd Walsh from Ventura, California, (master surfboard shaper, radical skateboard builder, and technical specialist for the Bionic Dolphin team) lifts the lid on the Hi-Perf Chevy Ratmotor that will power the BIONIORCA.
With Todd observing from the open front cockpit, and Doc at the aft controls, the inevitable crowd of spectators assembles on the dock at Whiskeytown to watch the BIONIORCA’s first operational engine test.
After years of hard work, the boat is finally underway for surface maneuvering tests, observed by day-sailors aboard a Hobiecat.
After a successful series of test runs, Doc and Todd return to shore in the BIONIORCA.
The obligatory post-test “Hero” pose. Hey! You just wish it was you! J
And here’s the BIONIORCA on another day of testing. You can see slight differences in the paint job if you look closely. And those red devices are to protect the leading edge of the hydrofoils in transit. But man! I can just imagine what was running through the station attendants mind. Ding-ding! “Fill ‘er up? Uhhh…will that be Regular, Ethyl, or Seal blubber, mister?” J
“Hmmmmmm… I think it might be the Flux Capacitor, Doc!”
Todd Walsh testing the emergency backup propulsion system.
Doc in the water, making some adjustments.
BIONIORCA underway and awash.
Here’s a photo-montage I did of the boat out there kickin’ up a fuss as Doc hits the gas a little bit.
Comin’ atcha. Kinda reminds me of the Nautilus on the attack, but then I guess I have a one track mind. J
Cruisin’ back with the hatches open.
Everybody dreams, but very few ever turn their dreams into reality. Doc is one of the few. The BIONIC DOLPHIN series of watercraft is truly unique and totally amazing. He’s achieved something all may admire and some may envy, but the World knows that when you see this kind of boat, it is the brainchild of Tom “Doc” Rowe. The man deserves respect, and he’s got mine. Props to you, Doc. You are a true Original.
NEXT: At the time of this writing, there’s ice and snow on the lakes in NorCal, so we’re looking forward to Spring when additional BIONIORCA operations will continue. When that happens, you’ll see it here.
NEW! Thursday, May 11, 2017: Found out about this old video of Doc testing the BIONIORCA and had to include it here. This was the first time they put it in the water and tested the drivetrain. Enjoy! J