Monday, February 04, 2008

Launch Logs 2008.02.02

Greg and I drove up to the Feb NCR Launch together. It was fun to have a launch buddy to chat with while assembling motors and retrieving rockets. I sim'd 10 flights and arranged for the 1 motor on the list that I didn't have to be brought by the GLR rep. I only got 3 flights in, but they were all great flights!

My first launch was my scariest of the day for me: maiden flight of my Talon 2 on a Road Runner F60. The kit was my most complex kit so far because it has 6 fins (3 lines of 2 fins) and the rear line is on the joint with the boat tail. My simulations said that I should use a 4 second delay but I only had a 7 second delay. Turned out the rocket flew straight (so the fins appear to be aligned okay) and the event was just after apogee (so the 7 second delay was nearly perfect).

At the annual meeting, I bought a Semroc Explorer kit and loved building it. I had its first flight and loved flying the Explorer almost as much as building it. The first flight was on a D12 and it also flew straight and smooth. In fact, I was really impressed with the boost it got from the D12 - I wasn't expecting much since I just wanted to verify the rocket would fly straight but it jump off the pad and went fairly high.

Finally, I launched my repaired Bullet. I cracked a fin and a fillet on my first launch of the Bullet in late 2007. I fiberglassed 2 of the fins to make sure they'd be solid. A G64 sim'd to a respectable 1100 feet so I felt like that would be gentle ride to verify the repair. My plan was to follow up the flight with either an AT H238 or CTI I205. The G64 flight went great but I cracked the fin that hadn't yet been fiberglassed.

After the Bullet flight, we decided to pack up and head home. It was disappointing to crack a fin again, but I was extremely pleased with my flights because all motors ignited properly, all rockets flew straight, and all chutes came out at or shortly after apogee. I had planned to attempt an L1 cert again and to make my first dual-deployment flight; those flights will have to wait until the March launch. I hope that the Thor will be done so I'll be flying 3 high-power kits rather than just the 2 in March.