March 2006 launch report (3/27/2006)
On Saturday, March 25th, MASA held its third launch of the
year. This launch was held at Apple Valley High School to coordinate
with TARC team flights.
A few of the flights:
MASA members - please send in your thoughts about the
Ted Cochran writes:
It was a wonderful day to launch rockets (well, as far
as March goes, it was wonderful). Lots of MASA members showed up
to watch TARC teams practice (and in some cases attempt
qualification flights). A few MASA members launched rockets,
I flew a stomp rocket on an A8, my Fliskits unidentified
flying foam object (styrofoam cup saucer) for a silly flight on
a B6, and my Acme Spitfire on a D12.
Several TARC teams were there.
North High flew three times, at least, and made one
official qualification attempt. They got within one foot of the
target altitude, but alas their egg capsule separated and came
in ballistic. So did their altimeter, but it kept beeping
and it was recovered intact from the snow.
MPA got in a practice flight.
Hope Christian had a successful qualification flight.
Apple Valley had at least 7(!) practice flights,
followed by two successful qualification flights. They were the
last ones off the field a little after 2 PM.
I'm sure that some of the others who were there will
have more to say--there were at least nine of us out there!
Art Gibbens writes:
Thanx to Ted and Rick for timing HCA's first qualifying
flight today. Thanx to Buzz, Dave, Paul, Mark, Glenn and any
other MASA members that came out to launch and support the four
TARC teams that were there to test fly and qualify! We even had
some parents in the crowd come along to watch their students
Hope Christian Academy got a healthy dose of reality at
Saturday's launch. The weather was cooperative and they were
riding high from the previous week's launch. They had done the
calculating via RocSim and extrapolated what they needed to do
to bring their altitude down and the recovery time closer. Their
strategy was to add weight and a larger parachute. They were
confident that they could come in, fly once and be pretty close
to getting a score that would secure an invitation to the
finals. However, I was not so sure that they had flown enough
this year with this design to make that prediction. In the two
previous years they had flown some more flights before making a
This year's design is a BT-70 three engine cluster, with a two
bay payload section having independent parachutes for the
sustainer and payload sections. They were able to secure a
qualifying time of 67.66, but I don't think that's going to make
the cut this year. So they will go back to the drawing board to
figure out what their next steps to homing in on 45 seconds in
the air and the 800 foot altitude.
Rick Vatsaas writes:
Christian and I arrived at the launch site pretty close
to 10AM. Many of the TARC teams were already there, as
were Ted and Ken. Plus a fairly new family, the Terraras(?).
We came with rockets and no launch
equipment, so we waited around until some pads were made ready
(note to self, build that mid power pad you've been doodling
about). The days' rocket selections were made on two
factors: maintaining a limited apogee (small field), and
materials resistant to damp (on account of the rapidly melting
six inch layer of snow).
First to launch was Christian's Tinee on an A10-3.
It arced over, swooped about a foot off the ground and then
ejected the motor. We tried again later by angling the rod
30 degrees, it still arced over, but the apogee was higher, this
time for a good flight. This rocket was built at the 2005
holiday party, courtesy of Buzz. Thanks Buzz
Second up was my Scorpion Rocket built from plastic
drink ware. The motor was an E9-4. It went pretty
good to the first 30 feet, before it arced over under power and
swooped down horizontal to the ground and belly landed in a snow
bank. The nose cone shattered and the fins are cracked,
but it can be easily rebuilt. Next time a larger motor and
more nose weight. (if anyone who observed the flight and has
some suggestions, let me know.
Third was Christian's Marauder (also a plastic drink
ware rocket) This had a great flight on an E9-4 We
tried it on a D12-3 and the flight was rather squirrelly, but it
We also flew Christian's Quest Seeker ( a Holiday Party
Door Prize on a B6-4). The plastic tail cone and the pay
load section nosecone both stuck nicely in the snow, preventing
anything absorbent from getting
Lastly, we flew the martini rocket for a good flight.
Looking forward to seeing you all at the next launch.
Full launch tally (in Adobe Acrobat PDF form, requires version
or newer of the Acrobat reader)
The totals were: flights, motors. The cumulative
total impulse was Ns with an average total impulse of Ns.
The motor breakdown follows: