June 27 2015 launch report
On Saturday, June 27, MASA held a launch at the Elk River / Otsego VFW Fields.
It was a beautiful summer Saturday!
A few of the flights:
MASA members - please send in your thoughts about the
Brian La Rose writes:
My son flew a two drag races of three Baby Berthas on C6-5's,
one against my Super Big Bertha on a D12-5. I flew my Estes V2
twice on a D12-5 nicely, and my kitbash from last year "Phoenix"
caught a thermal as it was coming down and eventually drifted
down behind the bulldozer to the north. I also helped a few
neighborhood kids with some FITI rockets. Great day for flying!
Todd Carpenter writes:
The weather was perfect for flying. At one point there was
an amazing iridescent cloud in the sky right next to the sun.
Neal and I started launching shortly after
9am. I flew my big Balsa
Machine's "Illuminati Pyramid" on a G76, followed by my Saturn V
on an E18. The Saturn V landed a step away from the launch
pad. No wind flights are really nice... I also launched my Art
Applewhite pyramid on an 18mm D21. Bwahahaha. The aliens never
saw a pyramid accelerate like that. Jenny and I raced
Flutter-Bys. Oaken Shield (with a newly grown nose, got rid of
the ugly plastic), Steam Comet, a Hornet also all enjoyed great
flights. Then the big pyramid again on an F44.
I also experimented with a NARCON 2008 keychain rocket that I
converted to MicroMaxx. The first attempt rod locked, and I had
to move the launch lug. The next was a safe launch, but it only
went up about 8'. I'll have to tear the nose apart and remove
some of the weight.
I also tested a new Jolly Logic Altimeter Three. After
observing some odd behaviors with the altimeter, I developed a
hypothesis: The Jolly Logic altimeters do not seem to record
flights unless you turn them on. I tested this a few times (by
not starting recording), and discovered that in fact, it does
not record when it is off. In contrast, if you turn them on and
start recording, the likelihood of it capturing a flight goes up
significantly (but not 100%, see below). I talked over my test
results with Brian La Rose. He obligingly confirmed my
observations with an independent test, by launching a rocket
with an Altimeter One, also without turning it on. Result: no
My altimeters seem to have similar behavior when it they are
safely packed away in the range box, rather than being both on
and attached to a rocket (e.g., my Saturn V). I hypothesize
they only record flights when they are both on and attached to
the rocket that is actually flying. I believe Glen Overby
performed a similar test by designing and flying his desired
specialized flight profile, but on a rocket that did not have
the electronics on board. I will probably continue to test
that in the future.
Neal Higgins writes:
The weather was absolutely gorgeous, my only complaint was
that I didn't start the launch at
With the non
existent wind I decided to start the day with a couple of
high altitude flights.
1st was the Arachnid (baby bertha) on a D10W-7 followed by Skeeter
chad staging from an E12-0 to a E12-6. Both were great
flights but a long walk for the Skeeter. The walk was made
worse by Todd who flew his Saturn 5 on an E18 and landed it
3' from the pad.
I next flew a couple of pyramids/saucers. Osiris flew on a
C11-3 and F29 Stealth flew on an F44W-4. I really do like
With the clam winds I decided to bring out the micro maxx
Commanche 3. The 1st 2 stages lit but for some reason the
upper stage did not fire. It still flew great and I got all
of the pieces back. In fact the 2 stage motor bounced off my
hand at the launch control table (no catching allowed). I
tried a could of times to get the upper stage to fire and
when it finally did it flew very nicely.
I next flew my Twilight Interceptor on a D10W-7 for another
Now it was time for gliders. I flew my Buzzard, CiCi and
Deltie B all on B4-2 motors and all flew beautifully. The
Deltie might have set a duration record.
I next flew my Rising Star on a cluster of 3 C11-3 motors
(should have been C11-5) for a very nice flight. I followed
that up with my Landviper on 3 B6-6's for another great
To end my day I flew F29 Stealth on an F27R-4 for another
Thanks everyone who helped with the range
setup and tear down and for coming out on such a great day.
Alan Estenson writes:
I managed to make it to a MASA launch! I made
it out to the soccer fields on Saturday for
about 2 hours and 11 flights.
"Corrigan" flew for the first time after a major
refit - changed it from rear ejection to
conventional ejection and from an 18 to a 24mm motor
My Wicked Winnie lost a fin sometime in flight. Thanks
to Bill Welsh for finding it!
My Falcon 9 had a perfect flight - unlike the actual SpaceX
flight the next day.
Full launch tally - see the Google Docs spreadsheet
The totals were: 98 flights with 109 motors burned.
The motor breakdown follows: