Saturday, December 31, 2005

Another Launch in the Hill Country

"Bull Pup" on the launch pad

A great day for a launch!

Well it was supposed to be a beautiful day for a rocket launch. When I set out for the Hill Country at 8:00am it looked like that old weatherman got it right after all. The sky was blue and there wasn't even a slight breeze.

When I arrived to the launch location I could hardly wait to get one of my three new rockets up into the wild blue yonder. Once everyone arrived and we got started I got my first rocket ready, the 018 Bull Pup. It was the first on the pad and the first to launch; it was also the first in the trees.

Just as I pushed the launch button a stiff breeze from the south kicked in and never went away. My precious Bull Pup had found its way to a very tall tree. My friend Mark volunteered to get on the roof of a small shed with a rusted tin roof and reach up to free the trapped rocket. He got and with hardly any damage to the rocket itself.

The wind continued through the entire day and my rocket wasn't the last to find the trees, but every rocket was recovered and we all had a great time. The Hill Country Rocketeers are a great bunch of guys.

Friday, December 02, 2005

The Christmas Rocketeer

Well Christmas time is here and my rocket building and launching activities have come to a screetching halt. With all the decorations, shopping, and wrapping I have found it impossible to do anything else. The most wonderful time has also become the most busy time of the year.

I am not complaining though, I love Christmas. I love the music, the food, and how this celebration of the savior of the world brings people together. So from me to you, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Once the holidays are over I plan to resume my model rocketry interests. Who knows maybe Santa will leave a new Areotech rocket under the tree for me!

Click here for a special treat from me to you. I made it mayself!

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Next Launch Announced

The Hill Country Rocketeers are hosting a rocket launch on December 31st, 10:00am - 2:00pm at their field in Center Point, TX. This field is suitable for model rockets limited to 1 pound or less and motors with 113 grams or less propellent (G motors). Everyone is welcome, including children.

For a map and directions please click here.

For more information please contact me or Art Applewhite.

Monday, November 07, 2005

My Fleet

Sunday, November 06, 2005

019 Nike K

Getting this rocket done was kind of a pain in the neck. The first kit I received from Discount Rocketry was really old and came with paper stickers instead of the standard decals. When I applied the stickers they just kind of fell apart.

I put a call into Quest customer service and they sent out another kit right away. It turns out they had made several improvements over the older kit that I had. The decals were even nicer than most other kits from Quest I had assembled and it came with a free display stand.

The finished product is a real nice looking rocket that should be fun to fly. I couldn't have asked for more from Quest in making the first transaction right.

Manufacturer - Quest
Stages - 1
Weight -2.4 oz.
Length - 24.25 in.
Diameter - 1.379 in.
Fin Material - Plastic
Recovery - 18 in. Parachute
Current Status - Active

018 Bullpup

This kit from Estes is a level 2 scale model of the air to air missile used by the U.S. Air Force. The kit was simple to assemble and finish because the entire airframe is white. The only thing that surprised me was the amount of clay that you have to pack into the nosecone.

I have quit filling the spiral grooves on model rocket airframes because several coats of primer does the same thing. I have also switched brands to the Wal-Mart house brand of spray paint. The spray pattern is better and the paint does not run as easily.

Manufacturer - Estes
Stages - 1
Weight -1.8 oz.
Length - 15.6 in.
Diameter - 1.33 in.
Fin Material - Balsa
Recovery - 12 in. Parachute
Current Status - Active

Thursday, November 03, 2005

017 Hornet

I wanted to try a new kit manufacturer offered by Discount Rocketry. They carry a great selection of Custom rockets. Estes and Quest rocket kits that I have built are great and I am not taking anything away from either of them. I am just looking to try something new and Custom "Raven" kit fit the bill perfectly.

I was drawn to this line because of the price and the water slide decals which when properly applied look much better than self-stick decals. All of the parts look pretty much the same except the nosecone which had a small indention on it. All of the instructions and illustrations were very good and the kit went together easily. I decided to change the paint scheme to look more like a hornet because I have lot of white rockets in the fleet.

Manufacturer - Custom
Stages - 1
Weight - .94 oz.
Length - 15.5 in.
Diameter - .976 in.
Fin Material - Balsa
Recovery - 12 in. Parachute
Current Status - Active

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Launch In The Hill Country

The Hill Country Rocketeers were nice enough to invite me out to their monthly club launch. It was a perfect day with sunny skies and little or no wind. There were about 20 people out on the field and half of them were actually launching rockets. The rockets ranged from small model rockets with "A" motors to large high power with "H" power plants. It was a lot of fun with a great bunch of guys and I hope to join them again for another launch.

The Launch Area
011 Superbird on a Full Pad
015 Initiator on Liftoff