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Last updated: June 3, 2006
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Alan Estenson, Webmaster

June 2006 Meeting Minutes (6/3/2006)

The June 2006 MASA meeting was held on the 1st at the Science Museum.

7 people attended the meeting.

  • MASA is being invited to set up a model rocket display in the Science Room at Convergence Con.  This is a science fiction convention being held July 7-9.  Info has been sent out on the email list; please speak up if you would be interested.
  • Ted Cochran and Mark Nelson talked about the TARC finals.
  • Mark also talked about a launch he was having in Farmington on June 3.
  • The June 24 launch will be at Nowthen.  There will be a local contest thanks to Buzz McDermott.  Hopefully, he will remind us what the events will be.
  • The MASA summer picnic will be held on Saturday, July 15.  It will probably be at the Elk River VFW and be similar to last year.  Details will be forthcoming in the next two weeks.

Darn Cornfields!

  • The topic of the meeting was "rocket locators" aka "how to find your rocket in those blankety-blank cornfields (or beanfields).
  • The simplest method is simply to get a good bearing on your rocket, and watch it all the way down.  When you're walking out to look for it, remember that it always lands farther away than you think.  Using a compass to get a heading can also help.
  • There's also the method of putting a really, really long streamer in your rocket.  A huge line of Caution tape or something similar can make things easier to spot amongst the crops.
  • Another method is to put a "sonic beacon" or "beeper" in your rocket.  You can simply buy a pre-made beacon intended for use in a rocket.  Both Transolve and Pratt Hobbies offer such units for sale.  You can buy a personal alarm and modify it.  You can also make your own beacon out of parts.  Beacons that warble or pulse are preferable to those that make a steady tone.
  • Some GPS units can take a bearing and initial location and then help you walk a line.  If done right, this can help keep you on the right track through the corn.
  • There's also active radio tracking.  There are commercial systems such as Walston and Rocket Hunter.  Glen Overby also talked about some of his homemade radio tracking gear.

(Alan Estenson)

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