Saturday 06 November 2010

Rocket Farm


Void Hawk on a G75 sparky motor

Today was my big day out launching rockets at the family farm on a truly beautiful day for flying.

We had the usual AE100 students flying their instrument payloads in the morning. That went well, all the rockets landed in the adjacent sections, the only road crossed was the one right next to the launch site. No crops anywhere so the recoveries were quick and easy. In fact, our biggest concern was making sure the students didn’t try to catch any of the rockets.

Around 12:30 or so I was able to start putting my own efforts in the air. I had six rockets that had never flown before ready. I managed to fly 5 of them, one twice, although this left me packing up the last bits in twilight, barely finishing before it was dark.

I had two damaged rockets. Green Rage 3.1 lost a canard fin, but I should be able to fix that. Green Rage 2.2 unfortunately had a fatal accident. I had put the motor thrust ring on to test the fit and then forgot and didn’t glue it down. This let the motor shift forward for a low flight that ended in severe damage on the road. That might have been repairable but the motor tube was heavily burnt by the motor so that will, sadly, be the only flight for that rocket. Other than that I had some very good flights.

Mom dropped Corwin and Charles off on me when they got back from Chicago. Alice had to go off to a violin recital for her group. The boys were mostly OK, although Charles got bored fairly early on, despite having much fun with the large clods of dirt in the field. Charles, however, was better about walking out with me to retrieve my rockets — Corwin tended to go about half way then lose heart, even though all of mine landed in the same section.

Corwin flew several of his rockets. One of those was his Quark, which was once again lost to sight right after ignition but because of the low wind it landed just 15 feet or so from the launch controller table. I even found the motor later, while walking out to retrieve one of my rockets. It was a good day for him, made better when we went with the rocket crew to Dos Reales, a favored Mexican restaurant, and I let the boys have two bowls of cheese for their chips. Charles didn’t even complain after that about having to squeeze him in among all my rocket paraphernalia.


Corwin finds his Quark

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