Saturday, June 15, 2013

Launch Report 2013-2 (updated)

Location: Central Sod Farm, Centreville, MD MDRA ESL-181)
Weather: Sunny, mid 80's, wind 0-10 (crossfield, away from the trees)
Total flights: Today - 9; YTD - 14
Total motors: Today - 10; YTD - 15
Motors by class YTD: B-1, C-4, E-5, F-2, G-1, H-2

This was a near perfect day for launching rockets. An inordinate number of misfires dampened the start of the day and garnered many chuckles and a new nickname - "No Luck Dick." I hope that doesn't stick! The early hours were also dampened with the Margin of Error getting what may be a terminal mud bath. From there it was all uphill. Please read the logs for the details.

My Flights:
  1. Margin of Error on an H135-8 -  This was my second rocket on the pad but the first to fly (see the next item). The Aerotech FirstFire showed no continuity even though it ohmed out OK. I used another igniter and switched pads. The DMS H135 flew great and the delay was spot on. The new DAT is really nice. The bad part was that the rocket landed in the swampy corn field and came back covered and filled with mud. The body is Quaker Oats bins, which don't hold up to moisture.UPDATE --> I will have to replace the top section of the body but that's about it. The rest is OK after it dried some and the mud was cleaned off/out.. The motor sticking appears to have been caused to a large extent by the label on the motor. I can't say for sure but I am sure that, from now on I'll remove them!
  2. 58mm JATO on a G64-7 - It took me 5 tries to get this one into the air. I tried 4 igniters on 3 pads with no luck. Three of those 4 never lit and showed no continuity. The borrowed meter said otherwise so I'll have to investigate. The 4th misfire was a Quest Q2G2 dipped in Magenlite pyrogen. It popped but the added pyrogen apparently was blown off and didn't ignite. Well, 5th times a charm (another dipped igniter) and the 58mm JATO flew and recovered well.  For all my misfires, I had an unusually good day with at apogee ejections.
  3. Paper Big Bertha on a B6-4 - This paper rocket flew well and avoided the puddles.
  4. Paper Big Bertha on a Quest C6-5 - The boost was a bit wobbly and about half way in, there was an unusual puff of smoke. However, the flight didn't suffer. This time, I had a grass landing. I wonder if the wobble was due to it being marginally stable on a C6 or because the fins are very floppy?
  5. Estes Ventris on an F50-6 - The F50 is still my favorite motor for this model. It spun slowly, which was vividly visible due to the flashes from the laser trim on one side of the fins. I had never noticed this before and assume it was due to the low angle of the sun.
  6. First Flight Hobbies Under Dawg on a E12-0/C11-5 - The boost as slow and with the wind (a reverse weather cock). The flight was great and recovery was again on mowed grass.
  7. AlaskPaperModelWorks Paper Stomp Honest John on an E12-4 -  The boost was good. However, the fins pretty much all need to be reglued. The printed surface doesn't hold glue very well. 
  8. Art Applewhite Mirror Gold Delta Saucer on an E12-6 - This is a good motor for the saucer and the surrounding spectators seemed to enjoy the flight.
  9. Art Applewhite Stealth D5 on a Quest C6-3 - This was another fun flight. I'm always surprised how much these things spin. It landed literally a few inches from its pad.
The photos:
58mm JATO

Margin of Error

Results of a lawn dart under power!

Under Dawg (the tall one)

Paper Big Bertha (the yellow one)

Ventris laser trim

Ventris laser trim