This was one of those classic half-good rocket weekends at Bayboro, when the weather really cooperates on one of the days, and just can’t seem to get it together on the other day. Saturday was warm and calm, but the clouds started out low, and just never seemed to clear all day long. The local AWS was reporting 600 feet of ceiling at 9:30, when I arrived at the field, and only rose to 1200’ by 5 o’clock. Sunday, in contrast, was a gem! Still warm with calm winds, but the clouds broke up around 11:00, and we had clear blue skies all day. How about a motor use summary:
The smallest motor flown all weekend was the F24 flown by Robbie Kirk on Saturday in his No-Name rocket. Very unusual to have a whole weekend with no low-power motors flown. The regulars were there on Saturday, looking around in the motor boxes for some combination that would keep them below the clouds. Most did. Dan Fritsch, Charles Long, Steve Polk, Mike Nay, and Sam DeLong were busy all day, but almost no-one else was there or flew anything.
Sunday was much better. Certification flights are always the biggest events of the weekend, and we had two on Sunday. Allan Rose re-certified level 2 with the Tripoli organization by scoring high on the written exam and then flying another nameless red and yellow rocket on a J350W for a perfect flight and recovery. Welcome back to Allan! Cade Brinkley waited all day Saturday for a break in the weather, and when none presented itself, he came back on Sunday for a perfect flight of his beautiful bronze and white rocket, also currently without a name, on the Loki M1650, a motor made with both blue and red flame propellant grains, and which is called Cocktail by the manufacturer. The motor and the rocket both performed flawlessly for a successful TRA L3 certification. Cade has posted the on-board video from that flight at https://youtu.be/kYoej2Nj6vc .
Ralph Malone was in town from New York, and he had three good flights on Sunday, using his EZI-65, and a PML Sudden Rush. Kurt Hesse, who is usually in the homemade motor group, flew his Shiny Diner on an I211W to good effect. Charles Long and Sam DeLong were both back on Sunday for some much higher flying, and both were very successful.
The good weather on Sunday brought out the EX crowd in a big way. Jim Livingston and Alan Whitmore were up to their usual sort of EX activities, and Eric Fadely and Jeff Goldstein made the trip from SEVRA-land to fly with us again. Jeff had two flights that were right at the ragged edge. The first was a flight of his Swamp Thang on a motor made from one of the low-metals/high red iron oxide formulas that are famous for extremely fast burn rates. This was predicted to be something like an L3000, and it sure acted that way. Safe recovery after a high flight. The other flight was on the other side of the ragged edge: This flight abused his rocket called Red Stick on a commercial Aerotech K2050 Super Thunder motor. As soon as it got up to pressure, it blew both the front and back ends of the motor off and the propellant came spinning down, burning from both ends. Very messy. The opinion of the senior members of the club is that the ST propellant may not actually be “ready for prime time”. I certainly would not fly it in any of my rockets.
Alan Whitmore, Prefect, Tripoli East NC