Launch Report, Bayboro, January 18-19, 2014

The weather was cold and windy so I didn?t expect much in the way of attendance, but we had a number of academic teams scheduled to show up and make test flights, so I packed up the truck and drove to Bayboro.? As it happens, the attendance was surprisingly strong, and those who did attend had a good time.? Here is the usual motor use summary for you:

Size Sat Sun Total
C 4 4
D 4 4
E 1 1
F 3 3
G 2 3 5
H 2 2
I 3 3
J 3 1 4
Total 19 7 26

I will try to mention everybody who flew any rockets by name, although a lot of the people in the various academic teams will remain anonymous.? On Saturday, Matt Raymond filled up the C and D motor range with a variety of excellent flights.? Everything came home safely, including the little gliders carried along with the Sky Bird, which flies on a C6 motor.? Johnny Hoffman came from St. Stephen, SC to fly some rockets with the North Carolina crowd, and he was quite successful with a little Art Applewhite Hexagon on a D12, a Nike Smoke on a F50, and two very entertaining flights of his Pizza Box on an H90, and again on an H54.

Steve Polk was very busy on Saturday, making flights with his Left Over on an E28, a rocket called B on on an F24, the Eight flew on 2 E9?s, and finally, the Twelve on a G53.? I picture Steve?s rocket room at home with shelves One through Twelve on one wall, and over on another wall are shelves A through F or G.??? Ed Withers had a fantastic flight with his recently rebuilt Nike Smoke using the fine Aerotech G64W.

We had 3 school teams working on big projects on Saturday.?? Dave Morey was working with a team from the NC School of Science and Mathematics in Durham, and they flew a rocket? whose name was not recorded on the flight card, on a J500 motor.? This flight was essentially perfect until the main parachute came out and the smaller parachute, responsible for bringing the nose cone in separately, broke its shroud lines and dropped the nose cone hard.?? The major portion of the rocket was recovered as planned.

Team 1 from North Carolina State University brought their subscale model out for its flight with altimeters, testing out the dual deployment approach.? The P.A.R. ?flew on a J350W for a perfect flight, except for the electronics bay falling in a ditch.?? NCSU team 3 was also on site for a flight of their rocket, called Zeppelin 4,? which carried the J500 green-flame formula.? For some reason that was not entirely clear upon initial examination, the main charges did not break the shear pins and deploy the main parachute.? There was considerable airframe damage.

On Sunday, Johnny Hoffman was back for one more flight of the Pizza Box, this time on a G64W.? Ray Bryant had two flights, the first with Short Red flying on an I 236 blue-flame formula.? Later in the day he flew his Orange Boost on the new/old Aerotech/Estes G80T, a great little single-use motor back in the 1990?s, and it is still a fine motor.? The wind was whipping along pretty fast by this point, and Ray had a nice long walk in the fresh air.

Alan Whitmore flew his Black Diamond Express Train to Hell, on a homemade 24mm F or G motor, and had himself another very long walk to get it back.??? Jim Livingston brought back a rocket that has not been to Bayboro in a while, the I-ROC, and flew it twice on 6-grain 38mm motors.? The first flight was made using a Kosdon I-500 reload that had been on the shelf for more than 10 years.? This one behaved more like a sparky propellant without the sparks.? Jim then flew one of Alan Whitmore?s I motors made with 3% brass powder as the fuel, and this one produced a much more energetic flight to almost 2000 feet, and a bright blue flame.

NCSU team number 2 arrived on Sunday to make their altimeter flight with a rocket called The Shocker, and they also chose the very entertaining Aerotech J350W for their flight.? The apogee charge did not fire on this flight, so when the main parachute came out at 700?, the chute ripped off its lines, zippered the body, and made the usual structural mess you expect in that unhappy event.? The analysis of that failure was still underway when the team left.

It turned out to be a fine weekend at Bayboro, I packed the correct clothing for a weekend in the January wind,? lots of friends ? old and new ? and lots of rocket flights.? What could be finer?

Alan Whitmore
Prefect, Tripoli East NC

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