Saturday, June 14, 2008

Launch Report 2008-4

Location: Central Sod Farm, Centreville, MD (MDRA ESL-121)
Weather: High-80s, clear, wind 0 - 5 mph
Total flights: Today - 12 ; YTD - 44
Total motors: Today - 14 ; YTD - 55

The weather forecasts had varied back and forth all week and had turned for the worse overnight. However, there were two omens of the great launch day to come. First, I found the Grease back on DC-101. I laughed my butt off to off-color jokes involving among other things a copious amount of pig squealing sound effects. Next, I was only the 6th car in line at the Bay Bridge toll. I guess this is thanks to the ~$4/gallon gas prices. Anyway, the weather cooperated nicely even is it was a bit warm and hazy. I stole shade from Don and Richard so the heat was bearable. (Note to self: pay Richard for the motors.) I saw skycopp and Ben from TRF and Mitch from NOVAAR. Skycopp worked his butt-off all day and still managed to fly a bit. I really need to volunteer next time. I also got to drag race David Jarkey's infamous Lampshade. The small one, of course. He flew an I-powered one earlier, which was really cool. Kenny from Performance Hobbies was there with the new G76 Mohave Greens. I made several mine and burned one in the Hat/Lampshade drag race.

My Flights (not in order):
  1. Convair XFY-1 "Pogo" on a C6-3 and two A10-P's - The flight was a little wobbly and the two 'chutes snarled badly. Neither opened but the only damage was one decal and the wing-tip antenna. In other words, a successful flight!
  2. Tarkus II on a G71-5 - As expected, I had to invert the nose cone to clear the rod. The boost was again wobbly and it arced towards the upper stabilizer. But it was stable! Ejection was a little late, but it recovered undamaged.
  3. Art Applewhite 18mm Helix on a C6-3 - This rocket is a good performer, flying quick and high.
  4. Art Applewhite 13mm Helix on an A3-4 - This was a cool flight but ejection was near the ground. Care should be taken when people are around or there is a fire danger.
  5. Art Applewhite 13mm Helix on an A10-3 - This flight was OK, but the A3-4 is a better choice for this rocket.
  6. Art Applewhite 18mm Double Helix on two C6-5's - This was a really fast flight and was the highest of all my monocopter flights. Nice!
  7. Art Applewhite 18mm Double Helix on one C6-3 - This was a test to see what its flight profile would be should only one of the two motors ignites. I left a spent motor in the opposite mount. It flew just fine but with a lower altitude. And the motors are not even canted toward the CP/CG :)
  8. Art Applewhite 13mm Double Helix on two A3-4's - This was also a good performer. I didn't think I'd like these this much - but I was wrong! The Double Helicies auto-rotate to recovery. You do need a clip whip for them.
  9. Hat of Death on a G76 Mohave Green - This was a drag race with David Jarkey's small lampshade (on a G64). The Hat ruled! However, the G76's flame wasn't noticeably green. There were several Mohave Green HPR flights and these were vivid.
  10. Whirlygig 24 on a F24 - This was a really cool motor for this rocket. I spun very fast and went high enough to begin rotating on recovery also.
  11. Semroc Golden Scout on a A10-3 - I used a bored-out 18mm case as an adapter and used a strip of packaging cardboard as a shim. It was a fast flight and everyone lost it in the haze. I found it, but decided I'd reserve flight #2 for July's anniversary (so there would be a July flight). The 13mm case snagged the hook and the 18mm case was about an inch past the hook but still retained.
  12. Nonami 24mm monocopter on an E9-4 - Great long flight. The case burned through badly and was the only burn through of all the monocopter flights today.