Piranha Airships is a Puget Sound area manufacturer of fully-operational toy airships. These airships are about two and a half feet long, and have a single band-driven prop slung elegantly under the nose of the gasbag.
I’m a happy owner, and encourage you too to purchase a vessel. They are so simply engineered, it makes me smile just to think of them. My cats, on the oher hand, find the airship to be of concern – it’s as though there’s a giant floating dog in the room. The presence of the balloon results in much hiding, peering around furniture, and running away.
We actually ended up buying a tank of helium at Costco, for, like, $30 or something, which considerably simplifies the process of inflating the gasbag.
There are other resources for toy blimps and dirigibles on the net, most of which are radio-controlled and somewhat larger than the Piranha. They run about $80 to $500 depending on the size and compelxity of the vessel. High-end ones often have a wireless video-camera option.
Draganfly is probably the place I’d go first if I were looking to pick up an RC blimp to bother others in the office with. They are 3-channel products, which means you have a left and right drive sytem as well as an elevation control. Draganfly makes some other pretty cool stuff having mostly to do with RC indoor flight.