Saturday, July 25, 2009

Launch Report 2009-5

Location: Central Sod Farm, Centreville, MD (MDRA ESL-134)
Weather: high 80's to low 90's, clear, 10+ mph winds
Total flights: Today - 8; YTD - 41
Total motors: Today - 8; YTD - 48

The day started poorly with lower gas prices and hot weather leading to a long backup at the Bay Bridge (beach traffic). Nevertheless, I got there a tad early...and found no sign of the launch equipment. I ate my sandwich and, when the equipment showed, I helped set up. By the time the launch started, it was hot and had gotten quite windy. It stayed that way all day.

On an up note, I parked by Don, Mikey, and Paul. Don even came bearing gifts - a couple of small nose-cone-like objects and some 5" pipe holders suitable for making a rocket rack :)

My flights today:
  1. 12" Aeroshell on a G74-P - CATO! You can see the before, during and after in the slide show below.
  2. Whirlygig-24 with shortened body tube on an E9-4 - I wanted to drag race this against the following rocket to compare altitude performance. However, an equipment malfunction caused it to race an unknown rocket. It flew well despite the stiff wind, with only a very slight weathercock.
  3. Whirlygig-24 with shortened body tube and modified fins on an E9-4 - This version turned sideways facing with the wind direction and had little upward progress. It seemed to autorotate well during recovery. It looked like it did so nose up instead of flipped over.
  4. Landshark 2.0 on a G67G-6 - Nice flight. People still think this looks like a Batman vehicle. I should probably rename it.
  5. BNC-R1.5 on an F39-6 - Nice fast boost. It lost a fin but not on landing. I couldn't find it but it showed up on my chair later.
  6. D-Fusion Bomb, Block 2 on an E15-4 - This rocket now has a fin unit attached. Lots of weather cocking but a nice flight anyway. It landed near the pads.
  7. Stink Bomb on an Estes C6-3 - Last week, this rocket core sampled, destroying the cone. I kludged up a replacement and dug up a recycled component to plug the base of the tube. I'm also using an Estes motor vs. the 'long burn' Quest C6. I extended the igniter outside of the tube plug using some scrap wire. The flight was great. You can see a lousy video on OurPlanet and a couple of screen snaps in the slide show.
  8. Quest DC-Y Space Clipper on a D24-4 - Perfectly straight, fast boost. Ejection was late but recovery was good.
P.S. The traffic on the way home helped to make up for the trip over - no Beltway backups.

Find more photos like this on Our Planet