MASA MASA   Join the National Association of Rocketry Minnesota Rocketry Network

About MASA


  Join MASA

Events Schedule



  Meeting Reports


  Launch Reports

Planet Newsletter

  Planet Online




  Email List


  Outreach Reports

Photo Gallery


Files -n- Forms

MASSY Awards

Open Contest



Last updated: Mar 27, 2010
Site hosted courtesy of the
Minnesota Rocketry Network
Alan Estenson, Webmaster

June 4 and 5, 2011 MASA 3rd Annual Regional Contest launch report (6/6/2011)

On Saturday and Sunday, June 4th and 5th, MASA held its third NAR Sanctioned Regional Contest.  Once again, Mike Erpelding served as the contest director.  Thank you, Mike, for all of your hard work!

The events were:

  • Open Spot Landing, WF 4
  • Drag Race, WF 2
  • 1/2A Super-Roc Duration, WF 13
  • A Helicopter Duration, WF 20
  • C Eggloft Altitude, WF 18
  • A Cluster Altitude, WF 16
    (Total Weighing Factor: 73)

Thank you to all the competitors, timers, altitude trackers, and everyone who helped out!

Saturday was a beautiful, sunny day.  The breeze out of the northwest was a little stronger than we would have preferred.

Sunday was darn near perfect.  Again, it was beautiful and sunny with only a light breeze out of the east.

A misfire-alley sport range was also open on both days with an active high power waiver.  Quite a number of sport flights were made; see the very bottom of this page for the totals and flight log.

Congrats go out to Alyssa Taylor on her successful (and picture-perfect) L1 cert flight!  Alyssa flew a LOC Fantom on an H128.

Congrats also to Kent Peterson for his successful (and also picture-perfect) L1 cert flight!  Kent flew a LOC IV on an H128.

Contest Results:

[for the full results, please see the bottom of this web page]

3rd Annual MASA Summer Regional Meet Champions

PlaceContestantNAR NumberSectionTotal Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Alyssa874765811998
2Stenberg, Zackery888885811506
C Division
1King, Ray858005761914
2Cieslak, John136285581146
3Estenson, Alan69539576714
4Gibbens, Art59244576318
5Cochran, Ted69921576252
7Stenberg, Jon3387558166
8Thell, Mark2779357660
9McDermott, Buzz1355957636
10Higgins, Neal79820IND18
10Marple, Carol8628057618
10Taylor, Jeff87148IND18
11Merdan, Lyle87893IND6


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

Art Gibbens writes:

First of all I want to say huge thank-you to Mike Erpelding for again heading up this regional competition. Also thanx to those that helped time, track and check the competitors' rockets – especially Neil who helped track all the altitude launches. It was a pretty good day to be flying rockets. I think we all wish the winds would have been calmer.

I had brought along some sport rockets to fly because the last time I was at the MASA regional contest I had time to fly “a little extra”. Not so this day, for reasons explained in the following narrative.

I didn't arrive on the range until almost 11:30 am, about a half hour after I was hoping to get there. When I got there there was maybe 20 cars already there and while I was there another 3 or 4 showed up. I didn't count them so I don't know for sure but it was a great turn out. I observed that there were a lot of sport flights going off and a fair number of them seemed to be unstable. I saw at least one fence post, saw a land shark and heard one CATO. I would think there would be some nominations for our annual PRANG of
the year award.

My first flight of the day was in the open spot landing event. I flew an old rocket I had built back in college I call the Silver Streak. It's a BT-50, 3 fins and a nose cone with an orange Estes streamer. I put an A8-3 in it, aimed it to land near the cone and rod marking the spot to hit and let it rip. It came down less than 100 feet from the spot and I was happy to get my first contest event done.

The second event I had entered was the 1/2A Super-roc. I had put lot of thought and time into building my rocket and thought I would do pretty good. Boy was I wrong. It was too heavy so it only went up maybe 50 feet and then spit the engine out because there was too much back pressure to kick out the 24 inch parachute I had stuffed into the BT-20 tube. So I DQ-ed and the rocket needed repair to fly again – oh well.

Next event for me was the Drag Race competition where I squared off against Neal Higgins in the first round. My 15 year old Alpha left his Der Red Max on the pad so all I had to do was recover my rocket for the win. In the second round I was up against Alan Estenson with a saucer of some kind. He beat me off the pad and had lowest altitude so I was eliminated. Here's where my day took a twist as I watched my rocket heading for the corn field 3 ditches to the East and before the road headed out of the launch area. I watched it touch down and then turned my back to it as I heard the results of who was off the pad first. I found out I had lost the round and then checked with Mike to see how long it would be before they would start tracking the two altitude events. He assured me I would have time to go pick up my rocket. So I went back to my cooler and grabbed an ice cold water and headed out towards the corn field. When I got there I discovered that most of the field was very hard and dried out with some stalk stubs sticking out of the ground from last fall's harvest. It looked to be a fallow field but we'll have to wait to see if that holds true as the summer goes on. I looked and looked and looked and then looked even further out of where I thought it came down. Nothing. So I looked along the far edge of the field in case the wind dragged it along the ground to the ditch. Nothing there either. I had been gone a good 45 minutes or more and decided I would look again at the end of the day knowing that I didn't need to return the rocket for another flight in the drag race competition.

When I got back to the prep area I sat down in some shade (provide by Carol's pop-up) and ate my sandwich and chips. Then I prepped both of my altitude rockets and waited for the range to be readied for the C Eggloft Altitude and 4A Cluster Altitude events. Once that was done I put my Estes Scrambler on pad one with a C6-3 and off it went up into the sky. Dang, no closure on the tracking so I get to fly again. But next up is my 4A Cluster model that I built for this event and to try my hand at a baffle rocket. I also made the rocket to be flown for fun at later launches for something a little out of the ordinary as you don't see many 4 cluster rockets. It'll be fun to see what it does on 4 Bs and 4 Cs. So I get it ready and it launches and all 4 engines ignite. While it is still moving up the ejection event occurs and it spits an engine. So for the second time this day I get a flight DQ-ed because of a spit motor. I cannot remember the last time I spit a motor and to have two happen in one day in competition is almost unbelievable. To add insult to injury that flight does not close either.

In the next round of flights my egg lofter again does not get closure on its flight. However, it does land about 10 feet in front of the launch table for the shortest recovery walk for me of the day. Then my 4A model goes up and only 3 engines light which causes the chute to come out right at apogee which is a much lower flight than the first flight. It is border line closure with a 10.4 percent of error – or something like that. The jury was still out on whether or not it was a flight that would count. But I only had time for one more flight so I put another C6-3 in my Scrambler and headed out to the pad. In the previous two flights the rocket tipped into the wind pretty good so I tipped the rod so it was pointed with the wind direction because in theory the rocket would then “tip” more straight up once it gained enough speed and sure enough it did. Definitely was my highest of my 3 flights with this rocket and had a closure of 7.4 percent. Yes! I finally had a qualified flight. This was a good thing because it landed in the dirt of the adjacent field and two of the fins got knocked off the tube so I wouldn't be able to fly it again that day. I brought it back to the check in table to have my egg checked and it was not cracked or broken after three

So I packed up my things and said my farewells and went back out to the corn field to look again for my Alpha. Needless to say I came home empty handed after spending another 30 minutes or more looking. I suspect my 18 inch parachute stayed full of air and the rocket simply skipped across the field, across the road and kept on skipping until it reached the high grass and woods at the far Eastern edge of the next field. Either that or I was looking in the wrong place for my rocket. It just goes to show you that on any given day of launching anything can happen. I never would have expected to spit two engines and lose a rocket on the same day, a day when I was planning on doing a little sport flying as well.

Ray King writes:

I just wanted to send a quick note and say thanks for a great weekend of rocket flying. Special thanks to Mike and the tracking crew who patiently waited in the warm afternoon sun on Sunday while I made my last couple of altitude flights.

MASA Summer Regional Contest Results

3rd Annual MASA Summer Regional Points

ContestantNAR NumberSectionA CAC ELAA HD1/2A SRDOSLDRTotal
A Division
Stenberg, Alyssa87476581288540600390120601998
Stenberg, Zackery8888858148032436023472361506
C Division
Cieslak, John1362855819232460002461146
Cochran, Ted69921576002400120252
Estenson, Alan6953957628801202341260714
Gibbens, Art592445764821600486318
Higgins, Neal79820IND000012618
King, Ray85800576480540360390120241914
Marple, Carol86280576000012618
McDermott, Buzz13559576000003636
Merdan, Lyle87893IND0000066
Stenberg, Jon33875581006000666
Taylor, Jeff87148IND000012618
Thell, Mark27793576054000660






3rd Annual MASA Summer Regional Results

ContestantNAR NumberSectionA CAC ELAA HD1/2A SRDOSLDR
A Division
Stenberg, Alyssa87476581292 / NR (306 m)NC / 19911 / 4215001.631
Stenberg, Zackery88888581319119ROT / 3799912.522
C Division
Cieslak, John1362855818813145 / 50SEP26.375
Cochran, Ted69921576TL
36 / 37

Estenson, Alan69539576197EJ / TL15 / 162176 / 340636.351
Gibbens, Art59244576NC / EJNC / NC / 65
Higgins, Neal79820IND

King, Ray85800576205 / EJNC / 14749 / 398400 / 31000.763
Marple, Carol86280576

McDermott, Buzz13559576

Merdan, Lyle87893IND

Stenberg, Jon33875581


Taylor, Jeff87148IND

Thell, Mark27793576



3rd Annual MASA Summer Regional Standings

A Cluster Altitude

PlaceContestantNumberSectionFlight 1Flight 2Total Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Zackery88888581319
2Stenberg, Alyssa87476581292NR (306 m)292288
C Division
1King, Ray85800576205EJ205480
2Estenson, Alan69539576197
3Cieslak, John13628558188
--Gibbens, Art59244576NCEJ048
--Cochran, Ted69921576TL

C Egg Lofting Altitude

PlaceContestantNumberSectionFlight 1Flight 2Total Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Alyssa87476581NC199199540
2Stenberg, Zackery88888581119
C Division
1King, Ray85800576NC147147540
2Cieslak, John13628558131
3Gibbens, Art59244576NCNC65216
--Thell, Mark27793576NC
--Estenson, Alan69539576EJTL00

A Helicopter Duration

PlaceContestantNumberSectionFlight 1Flight 2Total Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Alyssa87476581114253600
2Stenberg, Zackery88888581ROT3737360
C Division
1Cieslak, John13628558455095600
2King, Ray85800576493988360
3Cochran, Ted69921576363773240
4Estenson, Alan69539576151631120
5Stenberg, Jon3387558111

1/2A Super-Roc Duration

PlaceContestantNumberSectionFlight 1Flight 2Total Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Alyssa874765811500 (15 s)
2Stenberg, Zackery88888581999 (11 s)
C Division
1King, Ray858005768400 (84 s)3100 (31 s)11500390
2Estenson, Alan695395762176 (23 s)3406 (36 s)5582234
--Cieslak, John13628558SEP
--Gibbens, Art59244576EJ

Open Spot Landing

PlaceContestantNumberSectionFlight 1Flight 2Total Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Alyssa874765811.63
2Stenberg, Zackery8888858112.52
C Division
1King, Ray858005760.76
3Gibbens, Art5924457624.47
4Cieslak, John1362855826.37
5Marple, Carol8628057635.92
6Cochran, Ted6992157636.09
7Estenson, Alan6953957636.35
8Taylor, Jeff87148IND40.61
9Higgins, Neal79820IND41.94
--McDermott, Buzz13559576SEP

Drag Race

PlaceContestantNumberSectionFlight 1Flight 2Total Points
A Division
1Stenberg, Alyssa874765811
2Stenberg, Zackery888885812
C Division
1Estenson, Alan695395761
2McDermott, Buzz135595762
3King, Ray858005763
5Cieslak, John136285585
5Gibbens, Art592445765
5Higgins, Neal79820IND5
5Marple, Carol862805765
5Merdan, Lyle87893IND5
5Stenberg, Jon338755815
5Taylor, Jeff87148IND5
5Thell, Mark277935765

The Details:

Full launch tally (PDF) of sport range flights.   If you made flights that don't appear on this tally, please submit them so that we can add them in.

The sport range total for the two days was:  136 flights, 148 motors.  The cumulative total impulse was 4640 Ns with an average total impulse of 31.3 N-s.  The motor breakdown follows:


# Burned

MicroMaxx 0
















G 12


I 1




(Alan Estenson)

Back to Launch Reports