We could tell by the weather reports that this weekend was going to be about “half good”, with the forecast for Saturday being cold, wet and cloudy, and clearing skies for Sunday. As it happened, the winds were high both days, in the 12-17 MPH range, but the wind direction was optimal, everything was being pushed out to the east, away from the closest trees. We are gradually getting used to the fact that Bayboro is windy, and occasionally a long walk will be necessary to get your hardware back home.
The big news of any launch report is any certification flight, and on Saturday Justin Freeberg flew a very well-finished Madcow kit he calls Batman on a CTI I255 for a great flight and perfect recovery. Welcome, Justin!
Mike Nay is still sharpening his 2-stage skills, and after assessing the wind situation, he decided to test a new wrinkle on second stage ignition, and launched the sustainer of his Double Trouble #3 on an Aerotech J340 Metalstorm which was initiated via a head-end ignition system triggered by some Wi-Fi connection on his smartphone. Must have been magic or voodoo, because it worked perfectly. Allen Harrell was back with his grand-dad to fly a 2 stager called Bad to the Bone II on a D12 staging to a C6. This one worked perfectly and Tommy and Allen had a long walk and a good time visiting the soybeans.
Dan Fritsch was not at all discouraged by the wind, and he stayed busy all day, giving some smaller rockets a good workout with flights to lower than usual altitudes. Even so, Dan had a lot of exercise on Saturday. Dan’s PML Tethys flew on an Aerotech I180W, and he had three flights of his Madcow Discovery on motors of increasing oomph. First, the Aerotech F23FJ, then the F40, and finally the AT G25. All of these flights came home undamaged, I recall.
The skies cleared around 4:30 Saturday afternoon, and we packed the trailer in welcome bright sunlight.
Sunday morning saw clear skies and a much higher ceiling, so a lot of folks who kept their rockets in their cars on Saturday brought out the parts on Sunday and started prepping. Unfortunately, I could not find the flight cards late in the day, so I will not be able to give you any details about specific flights. The wind remained high, but the skies were exceedingly clear, and even my old eyes were able to see 3” and 4” diameter rockets up to 1 mile and beyond. We don’t get atmosphere like that at Bayboro very often. Also on Sunday, the booster section that the Univ. of Tennessee team lost on the second weekend in October was found by Robbie Kirk and his friend as they searched the field for one of Robbie’s rockets.
I can report from memory that Jim Livingston, Alan Whitmore, Mike Nay, Kurt Hesse, Robbie Kirk, Dan Fritsch, and Johnny Hoffman all had very interesting flights and long walks to help with their cardiovascular conditioning. If I find the launch cards at the next launch, I’ll append a little more detail on to the November launch report. Remember that we are flying on the weekend of November 17-18 to avoid conflict with the Thanksgiving holidays and the family-related events of that weekend.
Alan Whitmore, Prefect, Tripoli East NC