How many times since ROCKETS first appeared in my mailbox have I complained about the contents mostly being launch reports? Well, a lot. Less when there was coverage of launches I attended, but still a lot. Today, I can happily report that this was not the case with this issue. Thumbing from cover to cover:
The cover is a nice launch photo of a big Darkstar from Red Glare IX. But, the background photo on the index page tops that - it shows Steve Eves' big Saturn 1B standing at attention. Beautiful! This awesome rocket will fly at Price, MD on April 16th, weather permitting. Mark your calendar and watch the MDRA web page for updates.
First up is the third article in Frank Hermes' Coast Optimization System. He talks gyros, which is interesting even I (or you) don't plan to use one.
Next comes Frank Haas' build article on his 24' tall, 16.5" diameter Andromeda. It looks good standing in the woods...and even better boosting on a CTI O8000.
East Coaster Dr. Alan Whitmore continues his article series on Rocket Autopsies, focusing on all the ways your rocket can die assuming you motor did not CATO. It looks like there is a problem with the title but that is easier to live with than the events Alan discusses. If you haven't experienced some or even all of them, then you probably just haven't flown enough rockets!
Want another great build article...how about Matt Johnson's 30-motor Russian N-1? Complete with scale launch tower. And, what a launch shot! Da, I tease you comrade.
...followed by a 2-page video retrospective of NERRF-6. (BTW, -7 is planned for June 24, 25, 26)
There is a nice detailed report on Red Glare IX, whose pages have a pink background to continue the launch's breast cancer awareness theme. After all, it is still "all about recovery." I had my rockets all prepped and ready, but my appendix had other plans. So, RG IX ended up being all about MY recovery. All the other MDRA-ers got to launch rockets and all I got was that pink T-shirt :)
Then, ROCKETS followup with another build article! This one presents Brian Whitemarsh's awesome spaceplane-styled Avenger 5.5.
Finally, Wes "Dr. Zooch" Oleszewki has part 2 of his series I Wonder How High That Went. This was a treat. Instead of something that followed the title, he discussed spiral air flow around tubes, how it effects models like his Shuttle Stack, and how modelers can defeat it. Short but useful. The short description of the solution: air dam. Da, I tease you again comrade!
Great job Bob and Neil!