New Zealander builds missile in backyard

A New Zealand handyman with a passion for jet engines says he is building a cruise missile in his backyard using parts and technology freely available over the Internet.

    Sophisticated missiles could be
    produced in people's backyards

    Bruce Simpson, a 49-year-old Internet site developer, has a site entitled "A DIY Cruise Missile" on which he says he was prompted to build the missile because so many people had told him it could not easily be done.


    "I decided to put my money where my mouth is and build a cruise missile in my garage, on a budget of just US$5,000," he said on his website (


    Simpson said he liked to think of the project as a military version of 'Junkyard Wars'," referring to a television programme about teams building big machines from scrapyard materials.


    He said he would publish step-by-step instructions on his website about how to make the jet-powered missile, which would be able to fly 100 km from his home, north of the main city of Auckland, in less than 15 minutes.


    Proving a point


    The missile could carry a small warhead weighing 10 kg which would be hard to detect on radar, and would be impossible for the New Zealand Air Force to stop, Simpson said.


    The goal was not to provide “terrorists or other nefarious types” with plans for a working cruise missile, he said.


    The intention was to prove the point that nations need to be prepared for this type of sophisticated attack from within their own borders,” he added.


    Simpson had imported a radio control transmitter, global positioning equipment, and a flight control system, among other things, without encountering problems from New Zealand customs.


    "We are aware of the initiative," a Defence Force spokesman said, but declined any further comment.


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