The ground blower was a leftover from the Teijin era. Mounted on a trailer, it was powered by a VW car engine.

Our very first test Flight was close to being a disaster.
  We decided to simply inflate the envelope with cold air.
  There was no burner or gondola attached. We would inflate it, check the rigging and the shape, then pull the cap out and deflate.
  The wind was light. What could go wrong?

  The balloon was not suspended by any load ring, but came to a single point  where we had attached a rope.

Pat Wilson,Garry Smith, Ted Lee (student) , Grahame Wilson (crouching)

The inflation went well. We let the balloon drag us along a little before we pulled the cap out.
   Strangely, it made no difference. Even now, with an 18ft diameter hole at the top, it kept going, dragging all six of us. Finally it crashed against some light poles and split open.
I can only suggest there was some kind of venturi effect as the air flowed through the balloon.
  Possibly, it may have collapsed quicker if we had simply let it go.