Jet-Powered “Thunder Buggy” Reaches 60 MPH

It’s Friday, so how about something light. So, here are a couple of guys who took an Amish buggy and strapped a jet engine onto the back of it. Why not.

Images: Barcroft Cars/YouTube

The two men behind the rocket buggy live somewhere in Amish country and are apparently racing enthusiasts.

One of the two bought a jet engine online by mistake (he thought it was “turbo shaft”, but it was  “turbo jet” only, whatever that means).

In practice this means it wouldn’t work on a heavier vehicle (he had originally planned to attach it to a truck).

Living in “the Amish capital of the world” (going by the buggy I’m guessing he means Holmes County), he decided “an Amish buggy would be perfect” for the engine.

The engine design is technology from the 1940s, so that seems to fit here. The pair added a steel sub-frame to support the extra weight.

The buggy also sports the “air bag” technology that has become popular with some Amish to ensure a smoother ride.

You can hear the full story and see the rocket buggy in action in this video segment from the “Ridiculous Rides” show:

Some might be wondering, is this kind of thing offensive to the Amish?

I don’t know, but I think some Amish people I know would find it amusing. The buggy is a symbol of the Amish, but it’s more a cultural symbol than one laden with explicit religious meaning.

The buggy hits a top speed of 55-60 mph, which is a lot faster than other buggy adaptions we’ve seen.

There are few safety adaptations other than a seatbelt, so it’s probably a good thing it doesn’t go any faster.

The driver does wear a helmet, which I think is a lot wiser than a straw hat in this case.

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    1. Joseph Donnermeyer

      no horses were harmed

      Good to know no horses were run over. 🙂

      1. Horses all safe but that’s a brave driver!

        1. C.J.

          Brave Driver

          Brave, Erik….or Stupid??? lol
          Hate to think what might happen, if he loses a wheel, or hits a brick wall, in that buggy!

        2. Adele Dodd

          WOW. Insane or just plain crazy.

          While it looks like an adventure, and exciting to do. I agree with him if the wheel breaks, that will most definitely “be a bad day”. Also, I bet it is fun.

    2. Geo

      Good grief! An Amish horsepower race?

      1. Amish and buggy races

        Looks like this was a solo run, but in Topeka and Shipshewana in northern Indiana, Amish youth do “buggy pull” races:

        There was also this ad I found for “Amish Races” in Hicksville, Ohio:

        Finally, Amish also race during Yoder Heritage Day in Yoder, Kansas. Photo here:

      2. Adele Dodd

        Awesome Isn't it. (not a question)

        Isn’t that just awesome. Couple of guys having fun. Just like that young Amish man some years ago, put a boom box in his buggy.

        At least GOD gave us creative mind and some people actually use their gift of creativity. I like it.

    3. Cynthia Bliss

      Amish Pen Pals

      How do I go about getting an Amish Pen Pal?

      1. Hi Cynthia, have you had a chance to check out this post yet? I gave about my best advice on that there – I think the best way to go about it is to meet someone in person and form an acquaintanceship/friendship first…not as easy as just writing to someone (there seems to be a lot of demand for Amish pen pals…) but if you can visit a community and meet someone in person that would be a good start 🙂

    4. Yoder in Ohio

      I got a kick out of this! 🙂 Thanks Erik! What I’m wonering now is about parts vibrating loose! Buggies were not exactly designed for speeds like this! 😉

      1. Adele DOdd

        Remember steel frames

        Mr. Yoder,
        Remember in the video that they said that the frames are all steal welded and bolted together. Unfortunately, the rest is wood. That’s a negative.

        1. Yoder in Ohio

          Oh! You’re right! I had forgotten that mention. I guess I’m thinking how parts on a regular buggy can vibrate on gravel roads. 🙂

          1. Glad you liked it Yoder, and I hope you’ll let us know if you spot anything like this on the back roads in your neck of the woods…hopefully not! 🙂

    5. Randy

      Fun story, Eric. Thanks for including it in the mix of the always interesting and illuminating items that you post.

      1. Gladly Randy! Glad you enjoyed it. Between solar buggies and motorized buggies and now rocket buggies, I half-expect to be posting about someone coming up with a flying drone buggy in the not too distant… 🙂