Anyone who has ever dreamed of flying or walking on water can now turn that dream into a reality.
Jersey Shore Watercraft Rentals has unveiled a new product for this summer, called Jetlev.
According to JSWR owners Manny Bello and Raymond Cortese, it is the ultimate adrenaline ride.
“This thing is great,” Bello said. “We want you to have an experience you will remember and want to come back for.”
According to Bello, Jetlev is a jetpack that uses water for thrust.
The seat is hooked up to an engine that works like a reverse jet ski. Instead of pushing the water out, the engine sucks water in and forces in through the hose and out of the nozzles.
Riders are able to fly up to 35 mph and go as high as 30 ft. in the air.
First time riders will fly with an instructor controlling the unit so you can enjoy the ride, Bello said.
“We send first time riders up with an instructor so that they don’t have to worry about the units operation, they can relax and enjoy the ride,” he said.
Bello owns the only Jetlev rental from Cape May to Atlantic Highlands. It is available for rental for corporate events and parties and in the off-season he plans to take his unit to Florida and rent it out there. The Jetlev is available to rent out for a half hour for $130.
Riders can become certified pilots after a few training sessions. The first session is 30 min, and introduces the person to the experience and unit. The second session lasts anywhere from two-four hours and goes from a classroom setting to on the water. The person takes all the time they need to become comfortable with the unit and knows how to properly and safely operate it. The sessions will run roughly $500 combined, $130 for the first session and $300-$400 depending on the time and day for the second session.
“We want people to know we take all the right safety precautions for this device,” Bello said. “We want people to come down and have a good time.”
Reactions to the Jetlev were all positive, as beachgoers looked it over.
“This is the coolest thing I have ever seen!” one resident said.
“Wow, look at this thing. This is really neat, I can’t wait to try it out!” another resident said.
To help kickoff the Jetlev’s introduction, Andy Chase from 105.7 The Hawk and Lou Russo from 94.3 The Point came out to help promote.
Due to the rough surf in the bay, the Jetlev was unable to go out onto the water. Rachael Rittweger, another Hawk staff member, told Patch that she and Chase were able to test out the Jetlev during the past week.
“It was such an awesome experience,” Rittweger said. “I really had a lot of fun on it!”
Jetlev In Action
While the water was too choppy on a recent Sunday, Bello invited Patch back to tag along with a pontoon boat full of customers to experience the Jetlev first hand.
As Wyatt Ziegler, a visitor to the shore, was prepared for his ride, the staff from JSWR gave him a safety lesson. Ken Steiner, an employee of JSWR, explained how the unit operates and how to control it in the water.
“You have a mic built into your helmet and that is connected to the controller. We control the throttle and you control the steering. The key is to make small movements with the handles,” Steiner said. “Too much movement causes rocking and makes you splash down in he water.”
According to Jetlev Instructor Anthony Manasia, JSWR has two Jetlev packs; Jet Ski engines power both. One is a 215 supercharge and the other is a 255 supercharge. The water sprays out of the nozzles at 65 psi, or roughly 800 gallons per minute. While that may seem like a lot, it is safe to touch. The Jetlev has a minimum weight requirement of 90 lbs, but has no max weight or height.
When riders are strapped in, they sit on a bicycle seat while wearing a life vest. They are strapped to the harness and the staff instructs them about movements, how to steer and how to fly. The instructors are constantly guiding you to assure your safety.
After his ride, Ziegler told Patch about the experience.
“It was awesome! At first it was difficult learning how to turn but eventually you get used to it,” he said. “You really do feel like you are flying and you forget you have a pack on.”
Ziegler said that he was more comfortable in the Jetlev knowing he had a controller.
“It was a really good idea having them control my altitude, it was a lot to take on at once,” he said. “The first time I got some good air I really felt like I was flying!”
He also had one final tip for future riders.
“Bring a drink with you,” he said. “You swallow a little salt water and having something to drink right afterwards would make it better.”
For more information about Jetlev, visit JSWR at http://jerseyshorewatercraftrental.com, or call (732) 793-1130.