Launch Report, Bayboro, January 21, 2023

The forecast this weekend looked wonderful on Saturday, but the complete opposite on Sunday – so much so that we cancelled activities. Saturday dawned chilly, but with almost no winds. It didn’t get above 48 degrees or so, but thankfully there wasn’t much of a breeze. We had a spectacular turn out, and had more flights in one day than we’ve had on most weekends at Bayboro. Here is the motor table summary.



I’m extremely pleased with the amount of certifications that we’ve had this season, and we had two more successful certification flights on Saturday! Lexi Tucker has really taken to the hobby, and got her Level 1 certification with Tripoli last month. After acing her written exam, she brought out the same rocket as last month, one that she calls Oliver White and went for her Level 2 certification! Lexi chose the wickedly fast Aerotech J-500 Mojave Green for power, using dual deployment as a means of recovery. Lexi’s got it all figured out, and is now successfully Level 2 certified. Up next was Frances McBride who was in search of her Level 1 certification. She built a 4″ diameter Madcow Torrent that she calls Huevo and painted it accordingly. I personally enjoyed the cracked egg style paint job on the nose cone. Frances stuffed an Aerotech H-242T in her rocket which sent it off rather quickly. The parachute deployed right at apogee and Frances left Bayboro with a Level 1 certification with Tripoli. Congratulations are in order for both Lexi and Frances!! 

We had a good amount of propellant show up in the research department on Saturday, and it was really nice seeing all the different formulas burn. First up was Jim Livingston with his Carbon High rocket. This time with a four grain 76mm filled with Orange Sunset propellant. The designation of this motor was about an L-600, so Carbon High went for a nice, long trip. Jim later flew his LZ rocket on a 38mm, six grain Thing motor, which looked to have a lot of copper in it because it put out a beautifully bright blue flame. He designated it an I-500. Alan Whitmore flew three different rockets, all of which he took back home. The first was his Red Flag of Mortal Peril on a four grain 38mm Thing motor which looked to have a lot of his tried and true Black Velvet propellant, second was his 6″ diameter Red Rudy rocket on a six grain, 76mm AlFeO 5% motor which yielded about a 1:1 rocket length to flame ratio, and third was his Astro Mollusk 7 on a six grain 38mm Thing motor. The last person to fly a research motor was Kurt Hesse with his Butt Ugly rocket which took a four grain, 38mm I motor filled with Everclear propellant. 

We had a few regulars on site on Saturday, all of which put up some really cool flights. Mike Nay flew his two stage rocket Double Shot Avalanche with an Aerotech K-1100T in the booster staging to a CTI K-650S in the sustainer. Mike’s two stage flights are always impressive, and this one didn’t let anyone down. Mike later flew his 2.6″ diameter rocket Blue Iguana on an Aerotech K-270W long burn to just shy of 13,000ft. He clocked in over 23,000ft of altitude between both of his flights on Saturday!! While on the topic of high altitude flights, Nick Pyrtle brought out a 38mm minimum diameter rocket that he named El Diablo and stuffed a CTI six grain XL J-150P which took it to somewhere around 13,000ft as well. He told me the actual altitude, but I can’t remember what it was at the moment. Meredith Patterson was also in search of some serious altitude with her rocket ECHOECHO took an Aerotech K-695R, and fell in the neighborhood of 10,000ft. Dave Morey has been joining us regularly again, and flew his Starfire rocket on an Aerotech two grain, 75mm K-560W which turned in a nice flight. Ben Lewis had a 4″ diameter Loc Precision Iris rocket with him that he calls You Can Fit a lot of Text on a Rocket This Long. This time he loaded it with an Aerotech K-805G motor which took it to around 6,000ft or so. 

The award for coolest rocket last weekend goes to Mike Pudlo and Abhi Kondagunta. Their project was built out of Mountain Dew Cans, some Blue Tube, plywood fins and a 3D printed nose cone. They called this rocket Bad Dewcisions, put it up on an Aerotech J-435WS and it was basically transported into another dimension. Abhi later told me they achieved a top speed of Mach 0.93. Nathan Potvin got his Level 2 last month and flew the same rocket he certified with on an Aerotech I-600R for a nominal flight. Paul Kraemer made the trip down from Charlotte and flew some REALLY cool rockets. First was his Loc VII on a cluster of three Aerotech K-513FJs, which put out one of the densest clouds of black smoke I have ever seen. Second was his King Viper III on a cluster of three CTI J-150Ps. NCSU was the only university we had join us this weekend, and they flew their rocket Catastrophe on an Aerotech L-1520T. The goal of this flight was to have air-brakes reduce apogee and to gather general telemetry. We had all sorts of low power flights this weekend as you can tell by the flight table, but Richard Powers is the real MVP of black powder flights because he had five successful flights with C and D motors. Joe Hill launched the last rocket of the day, which was a new 3″-3″ two stage which took an Aerotech J-825R in the booster and an Aerotech J-350W in the sustainer. 

I thoroughly enjoyed seeing everyone this past weekend. Even though we only got one day of flying in, everyone seemed to have a great time.

Our next launch is the weekend of 2/25. Join us if you can!

Joe Hill

Prefect, Tripoli East NC

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