Launch Report, Bayboro, March 26-27, 2022

              Those of you who elected NOT to come to Bayboro this weekend should congratulate yourselves for prudence and good judgement.   The wind forecast was extremely horrible, and that was exactly how it turned out.  Only the desperate and the incautious made the trip to Pamlico county to expose themselves to that kind of hardship.   The forecast I saw on Friday had the winds on Sunday slightly lower and the temperatures slightly lower, but the wind velocity was reversed, and the temp?s on Sunday were A LOT lower.

              However, some people actually flew rockets, and I don?t remember any rocket that did not (eventually) come home.  Everybody got some good exercise making long walks.  Here?s the motor use summary:

F 22
G1 1
H4 4
I1 1
J  0
L3 3
M 11

              We had one certification flight this weekend.  On Sunday, Greg Hanson came in from the Charlotte area to attempt a NAR Level 3 certification flight with his V3 on a CTI M1400.   The rocket performed flawlessly.  After a flight to 8800 feet, the rocket descended with a reefed 3? drogue chute to 800? and put out the main.   The rocket landed less than a mile away, but it was dragged by the main chute through that gap between the woodlot due east of our launch location and Jason Rice?s farm almost to the tree line this side of the on Bay Road.   The recovery team was gone about 1 hour, 45 min.

              The most active flyers on Saturday were Matt Willis and his daughter Morgan and Mike Nay.  [I cannot list the flights in the order they occurred, because on Sunday the clipboard holding the cards was blown off the table and flung the cards into the wind.   A team of alert sprinters went after them, and I think we got them all back, but if your flight has been left out, blame the wind.]  Matt flew the Peppa-Loc IV on the Aerotech H550ST, the Baby Space Dragon on the L1000W load, and Morgan flew the playfully painted Ferbilicious (also my favorite rocket name of the weekend) on an Aerotech K695R.  The Baby Space Dragon led Matt and his son Henry on a merry chase way out due east of the site on past that irrigation sprinkler you can see in the distance with some good binoculars.  They were gone for a full 2 hours.  Mike Nay flew the Wildman Demon on an Aerotech H128W, and the Tree Hugger {world?s densest rocket} on another AT H550ST.   All of these were fascinating flights.

              All the above participants we would classify as ?incautious? (along with Alan Whitmore and Jim Livingston) but our academic teams could only be called ?desperate?.  NASA has an April 4 deadline for qualifying flights to participate in the Student Launch Initiative at Huntsville, AL in late April.  The NC State University High Power Rocketry club made two fine flights on Saturday.  They qualified this year?s rocket ? Catastrophe ? with the help of an Aerotech L850W, and for some extra practice, flew last year?s rocket ? Dream Crusher ? on an L 1390G.   The Dream Crusher was built for last year?s competition, but did not fly because of complications of the CoViD-19 pandemic   (fever, severe cough, loss of taste and smell, etc.).

              Those members who have been with us a few years will fondly remember Tommy Harrell?s daughter Natalie, who had flown with us for years, going back to the Whitakers days.  She often baked cookies the night before, and brought them to the launches to delight us all.   Then she phased out for a while to go to college, get a job, get married and have a baby (a little boy named Brennan, I think). And we didn?t see her for a while.  She and Tommy and little Brennan came on Saturday with a huge pile of cookies.  It is a delight to see you again, Natalie!

????????????? New members are always a good sign for any rocket club, and this weekend we welcomed Ian Edgerly, a NAR member.?? Ian flew his Estes Ascender, twice, on the Estes F15 to check out the operation of the Jolly Logic parachute release device.? He must have read the instruction manual, because it worked perfectly for him both times.

              The other desperate academic team hailed from Victory Christian Center School in Charlotte, a secondary school team trying to qualify for the SLI competition.  They struggled through more adversity than I have space to list, and finally got off a flight of their rocket Faith late Sunday afternoon.  The flight was uneventful and was recovered in perfect shape as the sun ?set slowly in the west?.  Congratulations and we?ll see you in Huntsville!

              Why is Alan writing the launch report again? I hear you ask.   The event is past and I can finally let the cat out of the bag.   Saturday was Dennis Hill?s 70th birthday, and all of his kids, including our prefect, Joe Hill, wanted to throw a surprise party for him, so Joe asked me to run this launch for him. When you see Dennis again at a future launch, be sure to wish him a happy birthday and congratulations for finally reaching actual ?adulthood?.

Alan Whitmore

Old guy

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