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Last updated: Nov 22 2008
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November 2008 launch report (11/22/2008)

On Saturday, November 22nd, MASA held its 12th (and final) launch of the year.  This launch was held on the VFW soccer fields near Elk River

Thanks to everyone who helped with the equipment!

A few of the flights:

MASA members - please send in your thoughts about the launch! 

Alan Estenson writes:

I arrived about 9:30, and Rick Vatsaas was there just a few minutes after.  It was a chilly morning, with partly-cloudy skies and a 8-10mph breeze out of the SSE.  Rick and I set up my 4-pad sawhorse and launch controller out in the southeast corner of the field for maximum recovery space downwind.  Expecting a short and lightly-attended launch, I had hauled along minimal range equipment.

Rick and I started flying rockets about 10am.  I first flew my Astron Sprint clone on an A8-3.  Given the wind, streamer recovery seemed like a good idea.  I then flew my old Der Big Red Max clone on a B6-4 and my Warrior 56 on a C6-5.  To wrap up my own flights, I launched my trusty ol' Maniac on a D12-5.  Since this launch was the last of MASA's 10th anniversary year, flying the Maniac seemed fitting.  It had flown at the November 1998 MASA launch.

Rick had six flights including a first flight of his "Starship Ursa" kitbash rocket on a D12-5.  Unfortunately, the wind carried it all the way to the parking lot, and two of the leg pods broke on landing.  Rick also had two great flights of his "Tycho Express" retro-style rocket on C11-3 motors.

Buzz McDermott flew a MRI Lamda and an ARCAS.  Scott Gleason flew an odd-roc on a D21 (the only AP motor used today) and his SpaceShipOne on a C6-5.  Unfortunately, the SS1 did a cruise missile flight into the wind and impacted before ejection.

Lyle Merdan flew his Stormcaster on a D12-5 to chalk up his NARTREK Bronze D-powered flight.  He also attempted his NARTREK Bronze streamer duration flight with a Quest Aerobee-Hi on a B6-4, but came up just short at 27.16 seconds.

Glen Overby flew a variety of rockets under a variety of assumed names.  Since several of them were on D12 motors, he also had a variety of long retrieval walks to the north.

By about 12:30, everyone had enough of the cold, so we packed up and headed for home.

Rick Vatsaas writes:

I was a little nervous about going out to the launch today, because it appeared to be windier than forecasted, but I decided to go anyway and had a great time.

I arrived at 9:30 and help Alan set up the range. We set it up way over in the far south east corner of the field, the maximum distance the carry the gear I think.

With no one but me an Alan in site we decided to start launching a few rockets. I flew an Estes Flash on a B6-4 just to get a feel for the wind conditions. After Alan flew a couple more, I felt brave enough to put my Starship Ursa up on a D12-5. The flight was great but it drifted the whole length of the field to land hard in the parking lot, breaking two of the landing struts, and then dragging on the rocky asphalt for good measure. Thanks to the fact that Scott Gleason had just arrived, and scooped the rocket off the ground saved it from further abuse. I think the struts can be repaired, but the damage was inevitable, I think.

Next I flew my Tycho Express Sci Fi Rocket for two good flights on C11-3s. This has turned out be a fun flier, and amazingly stable even in higher winds. I had originally it loaded with a D12-5 but chickened out after the Starship Ursa incident. I wrapped up with a flight of my Martini Rocket on a D12-5 and an Edmonds Tinee that glided all the way over the field to stage a perfect land attack on Glen Overby's car.

I had another commitment so I bailed at 11:30, but by then there were a number of cars in the parking lot. So I thought it was a pretty good launch.

The Details:

Full launch tally (PDF)

The totals were:  21 flights, 21 motors.  The cumulative total impulse was 221 Ns with an average total impulse of  10.5 Ns.  The motor breakdown follows:


# Burned

MicroMaxx 0
















G 0


I 0




(Alan Estenson)

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