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  1. #1
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392

    Trajector or InterJector?

    I picked up a couple of these on a whim because you can't have too many rockets with interceptor nose cones! Thought it would also make a good kit for my grown kids to fly when they come to launches with me. I wasn't super happy with the stock markings and black fins, looked cheesy. So, I decided to paint the fins silver, and work with Mark at stickershock to do some modified marking from one of my Interceptor Glider kits to fit the fins and I thought it turned pretty well. Only changes I made was to put in a baffle, a kevlar 12" long extension for the shock cord and added rail buttons and no thrust ring.

    Frank

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  2. #2
    Join Date
    18th January 2009
    Location
    Maryland
    Posts
    11,710
    Looks great. Stickershock rocks.

    Dick Stafford
    The member formerly known as the Pointy-Haired Moderator.
    The Original Rocket Dungeon
    Volunteer compiler of product news for ROCKETS Magazine

  3. #3
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Also, be sure and check out...

    www.accur8.com

    ...I'm building a Trajector with one of John's NASA skins and I think it looks awesome!



    Attached are my fins in the "spray booth"!
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    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  4. #4
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    That looks really good without the pods, I didn't see that option on his site, I'm not a big fan of the chameleon skins I prefer plain white with markings and maybe panel lines, ie his thunderbird set, but this scheme is pretty clean.

    You had a letter missing in the link, www.accur8.com
    Last edited by burkefj; 2nd October 2017 at 05:04 AM.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    14th July 2015
    Location
    Randolph, NJ
    Posts
    3,745
    I like it so much better without the pods, even though it's reduced to a basic 3FNC with Interceptor nose cone. That's what inspired me to buy that skin.

    Yours looks great with the new vinyl.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    Thanks, I agree it looks cleaner without the pods, maybe someone can 3-d print pods that look like the original interceptor pods, have two on the lower fins and leave the upper one bare maybe....Or a small T tail to even out the drag of the pods....In fact, you could do drop tanks like an F-104 3d printed for the two lower fins, and a t tail for the top, and even out the drag and get more of the starfighter look.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Sorry about the bad link! I purchased his NASA skin off of eBay so, go there and search for it. Also, John is a member on this forum and I think he sells his skins to members for 50% off. Here's the post...

    Accur8 Rocket Skins 50% Off to Forum Members
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Hey burkefj,

    The kits on your site look awesome!!!

    Great Job!!!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  9. #9
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Hey neilw,

    After an awesome email exchange with John P this week, I'm going to start "skinning" my Trajector tonight and will post pics.

    I will also share with you some of the great tips John had for applying/finishing!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  10. #10
    Join Date
    14th July 2015
    Location
    Randolph, NJ
    Posts
    3,745
    Quote Originally Posted by Classic_Orbit View Post
    Hey neilw,

    After an awesome email exchange with John P this week, I'm going to start "skinning" my Trajector tonight and will post pics.

    I will also share with you some of the great tips John had for applying/finishing!
    He has shared them with me too.

  11. #11
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    Cool, if you want to add your tips here in this thread that's cool with me. I just ordered a set of nasa markings sans chameleon, and I think I will add little wings to the tip pods and remove the pointy things and mount them on two of the fins like drop tanks and then do a styrene small T tail to even out the drag.

    Frank

  12. #12
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    I just finished my Accur8 Trajector BT skin install. Without a doubt, John Pursley makes one heck of a great product so, PLEASE don't judge his amazing skins based on my crappy & quite rusty skills!!!

    "You've NEVER done something until, you have DONE IT"... and now, I have! So, first off, let me say that John's instructions are very well written and, as you go through the process, his words do match your actions. I learned that, for me, the most important part of applying the skins is, "that initial sticking/tacking down" of the first side of the skin you are applying. Getting the skin to the right position was easy BUT, FOR ME, keeping it there while removing the "pre-cut" 1/4" section of backing before applying was where I found myself allowing the skin to "slip". Now, these "slips" were probably no more than a 1/16" of an inch but, for my "OCD", it may as have well slipped completely off the tube!!!



    Please reference the attached pics. One thing I did do for all of the three skins before installing them was, after cutting them out, I used a paper towel tube and wrapped the skin around it to give it some "shape memory" so it would wrap around the TB easier. I took it one step further by, afterwards, removing the paper towel tube and wrapping the skin tightly around "itself" to really make it want to naturally wrap around the BT during installation. I am pleased with the skins and now have the confidence to take on "wrapping" the NC.


    One last thing, John's inclusion of the "clutter" markings is BRILLIANT!!!! I had an ugly mark on the BT tube from a "ding" it received during the MMT installation and I easily cut out two (2) clutter markers and covered it up!


    I will be getting the "new" Minwax clear coat he suggested and applying it (hopefully) on Sunday.


    I will also, be posting all of his suggestions from our communications... he was VERY helpful and a nice guy to say the least.


    The one thing that really comes to mind after doing the install is... like John says, be SURE and remove ANY imperfection on the BT before installing the skin as any blemish WILL show through the skin!


    PLEASE feel free to ask any questions and understand, Accur8 skins are great and a BETTER builder than myself can make his/her rocket look perfect by using them!!!

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    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  13. #13
    Join Date
    11th February 2011
    Location
    Burleson, TX
    Posts
    43

    Trajector Skins...and other ones, too!

    First, for the time being, ANY Forum member can drop me a note specifying the skins he/she wants and I will invoice you via PayPal for half the regular price of any skin kit (that includes Mercury fin kits which include skins) you see in my eBay store ( http://stores.ebay.com/accur8products ). My Accur8 website is currently undergoing a complete rework (the current site dates back to about 1999) and the new site will be more retail oriented. I know it's a bit more effort to go to the site, select what you want and then write me for an invoice but until I at least post "shopping links" on my current site (or get the new one up...whenever) that's pretty much the way I'll work it for the time being. Also, don't hesitate when you order (or just drop me a note even if you aren't ordering) to let me know about your projects, ideas, and suggestions. I will almost always respond and love corresponding with modelers.

    Naturally, I prefer that you order direct from me (it makes me a bit more $$$ and if you order direct, I won't charge you shipping which saves you at least $3 whether the item is on sale on eBay or not.

    As of today, I have the NASA skins both WITH and WITHOUT the Chameleon pattern. Just indicate "without Chameleon pattern" when you order.

    Also, I have just finished the prototype of the "Der Rokjektor" skin for the Trajector (think "Der Red Trajector) which is a bright red (yes, with the Chameleon pattern, but you will be able to get it without) with markings similar to the Phantom Trajector (in German...) and with a "fantasy theme" of "Germany won WWII." I'm hoping to have the built-up prototype/photo model done sometime this coming week.

    I have a STL 3D printer that I plan to make mold masters/patterns with (among other things). A couple of my thoughts are to create some Interceptor style "fiddly bits" (as one local modeler says) such as wing-pods and tail cones, cockpits and other items if thee is enough interest. Have thought about Interceptor nosecones but you can get the Interceptor nosecone in BT-55 size in their SciFi nosecone kit and, of course, the "E" sized job with the Trajector...which has been available now for well over a year at a price that is worth getting for the nosecone and body tubes for custom projects. Other Estes models like the Mammoth (part of a 3-kit bundle that also includes the Trajector and Prowler for $45) has a nosecone that is virtually the same as a Trajector nosecone...but without the cockpit (I am considering making an add-on "cockpit" depending on if there is sufficient market potential or not). The Majestic also has the same nose as the Mammoth. Unfortunately, the nosecone for neither the Trajector/Interceptor is a "catalog" item. The "ogive" nosecones of the other Pro Series models are nice, but not great candidates for nosecone skinning (with my skins, anyway) because the skin material simply doesn't really "stretch" (though I am looking into ultra-thin "stretchy" or heat shrinkable materials).

    One last thing (almost). I am also considering doing skin kits for "Interceptors" or (as Classic_Orbit indicated in an email to me) "Interjector" skin kits to build "short" (and slightly modified) Interceptor/Vindicator E models using the Trajector as the "core" model. The skin kits will have Interceptor/Vindicator wing/fin/rudder patterns and general building "suggestions" for building with the Trajector (I just hope Estes doesn't discontinue the Trajector too soon!). This would allow modelers to take advantage of the 29mm engine mount and, of course, the Interceptor nosecone...and would also utilize the 3" shorter body tube.

    BTW...I pretty much toss the clunky-snaggy "stock" shock cord mount of the Trajector and instead use a 6-foot 750-1000 pound test braided tubular Kevlar cord anchored to the engine mount. With a cord that long, you really don't need an elastic cord...but it's plenty easy to attach about half the excellent elastic cord of the kit between the end of the Kevlar and the parachute for a bit of extra "shock absorption" if you don't like the idea of going without.

    Also, Orbit mentioned the clear Minwax (it's the Clear Minwax Polycrylic water-based polyurethane). I have fallen in love with the stuff, especially for sizeable models like the Trajector and others. It goes on thick (one thick coat will generally do it), it is "neutral" to the skins (wont "attack" or cause them to swell), gives a mirror finish (if you use the gloss) and gives easy water cleanup. I have gotten excellent results brushing it on with a good 1" foam artists brush as well as in a spray can (it's available most anywhere in tins AND spray). The clear will "mislead" you into thinking there's something "wrong" when you spray it as it goes on initially with a very "orange peel" or "marbly" look. It will self-level as it cures. The "Satin" and "Flat" versions of the sprays don't exhibit this effect when applying. I have used the Satin spray and it is good as-is (not quite gloss...not quite flat). But, if you don't like the Satin appearance after you apply it, you can "Gloss It" safely with a coat of Rustoleum Clear Lacquer. Beware, that being water-based, the Minwax Polycrylics look cloudy for the first couple of minutes or so after application...but this is completely normal.

    John Pursley
    Accur8 Spacemodels
    johnpursley@accur8.com

  14. #14
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    Here is what I was able to do this morning, built the baffle which also is the mount for the kevlar line to attach the elastic, built the motor mount, installed lead weight in the nose to replace the same weight of clay included. Then I built the fins. I cut a styrene T tail and top of the T tail to mimick the F-104 shape, then mounted it on the fin. I took one of the orange pods, trimmed and sanded all of the ridges and cut the pod tip off and reshaped it, then cut a slot with my dremmel and mounted a fin to make it look like a drop tank. Not too bad. One question does the silver tube and nose cone need to be painted white before application of the vinyl, or will it cover the silver completely?

    Frank
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  15. #15
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Awesome! Please post pics if you have them.

    For what it's worth, I left my BT silver & the skin looks great!

    What baffle design did you use? I will eventually put a 3 tiered "half-moon" baffle system in mine... time allowing!

    I will try and update my site with my newest build pics tonight... again... time allowing!!!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  16. #16
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    Here is the baffle, it isn't a full baffle, I just wanted something that would partially block particles, and give me a mounting location for the kevlar that could be replaced through the motor tube if needed, and give a shelf to keep the chute from going too far in. I will also use a piece of nomex on top of the baffle to protect the chute, so no wadding. The coupler helps give a shelf to keep the baffle plate from coming loose in case I don't get a good glue fillet there. I couldn't put two fins on the wingtip tank since it is short and would interfere with the wing, I think it looks ok like it is. The tip tank isn't permanently mounted yet, I'll wait till after the wrap is applied. I also cut the holes for the rail button t nuts that will to on the bottom of the fuse. I'll install the t nuts after wrapping, then install the baffle from the front and the motor mount from the rear. Then install the fins.
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  17. #17
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    DUDE!!! Unfortunately, that does not look ok... IT LOOKS AMAZING!!! Great job my friend!! Please keep posting your build pics!!! I may have to blatantly steal your baffle design, it looks pretty good!!! Unfortunately, my time ran out tonight but, I will try and get some things up very soon. Again, that looks fantastic!!! Can't wait to see it fly!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  18. #18
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    I got the markings from John today, very quickly in fact. I spent about 3 hours carefully reading and applying them. I think they turned out very nicely. I sent this list of minor issues I found to John. Nothing was a showstopper.

    A couple of issues I noted:

    1)The Decal that goes on top behind the canopy to hide the seam with the star tracker, the yellow stripe with red stripe is way too wide to line up with the yellow/red line that is on the main cone wrap and the color is off. I cut it off and cut a piece of the yellow stripe with red stripe from the test sheet you included to hide the small misalignment of the line. John said that he did it this way on purpose and it isn't supposed to match, but I preferred my solution.

    2)Aligning the front nose piece, I had to basically align one of the blue tapered side marking on one piece and then wrap from there, if I tried to align the front nose piece edge with the seam, the blue side markings did not line up.

    3)I did have just a bit of wrinkling on the rear where the cone goes from taper to straight, John's instructions note this may be an issue and suggested trimming on a pre-marked line, and I trimmed that small indicated portion off and used one of the included yellow trim lines to hide the seam between that and the rear cone wrap, not a problem, worked as intended.

    4)It should be noted the vinyl markings are way too thick to allow putting the pods on the fins, the vinyl needs to be trimmed away for them to fit, I know normally there aren't pods on this version.

    5)I used rail buttons and had already marked and cut their locations, in the decals, they have a large white cutout on the blue bottom for the launch lugs to be placed, it might be good to include a cover decal, like a hatch or something to cover those up in case people don't use launch lugs, they are large and you can't hide them with the little things he includes, I used a couple of vinyl hatch decals on white that I had from a Pegasus kit I used to make that I covered them up with.

    6)Last point, the instructions indicated it was a good idea to fill the nose cone lines and then paint it silver or grey, but when you trim the wrap there is large portion of the canopy section that was not covered at and silver looked terrible against the white. I didn't want to try to mask or brush paint the canopy white, so I used some very thin white vinyl from stickershock that conforms down into the lines etc with minor hair dryer heat so I did that for a base of white, and then applied the window markings and the rest. I don't think that the lines needed to be filled, I don't notice anything show through, I would paint the cone gloss white.

    John did note that I got the front nozzle decal that hides the seam backwards, I didn't notice the other nozzles on the sides till I finished it. I also apparently reversed the rear cone wrap, although since the writing is right side up, you don't really notice it.

    I'll have to get some of the poly spray and finish it up this week.


    Frank
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  19. #19
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Frank... what an amazing job!!! I LOVE your mods with the fins and everything looks so good! GREAT job with the "hatch" decals to cover the launch lug application areas. The ONE thing I did tonight before seeing the post was to sand the NC for a layer of the same white I had added to my fins so, thank you for confirming that painting the NC is the right thing to do!!! Again, I can't wait to see your and my Trajectors fly! I, still (LOL!!!) ran out of time to post any of my build tonight but, I will soon! There are just not enough hours in the day... ESPECIALLY to be building rockets!!! I should be clear coating my rocket tomorrow night so, maybe pics after that... fingers crossed! Thanks for posting your great pics buddy... inspiration indeed!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  20. #20
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    I sprayed the minwax satin acrylic water base and it worked great, johns recommendation was right on.

  21. #21
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Yea! John WAS right. I'm applying my second coat tonight after sanding down the first. It may be overkill but, it does look good!!!

    I will eventually publish pics to my site but, "time" is the rarest commodity I have right now!!!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  22. #22
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Flying for the first time in 30 years tomorrow!!!! She may blow up 5 feet off the pad but, that doesn't matter!!! As Frank Costanza says... "I'M BACK BABY!!!!" I realize it's just a MPR but still, a big thank you to Kevin Tetz, Allen Hall & John Pursley at Accur8. If I fly straight & true, my Level 1 build begins on Sunday!!!!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  23. #23
    Join Date
    30th January 2016
    Location
    US > OK > NE
    Posts
    3,926
    Quote Originally Posted by Classic_Orbit View Post
    Flying for the first time in 30 years tomorrow!!!! She may blow up 5 feet off the pad but, that doesn't matter!!! As Frank Costanza says... "I'M BACK BABY!!!!" I realize it's just a MPR but still, a big thank you to Kevin Tetz, Allen Hall & John Pursley at Accur8. If I fly straight & true, my Level 1 build begins on Sunday!!!!
    Woo! You do you.

  24. #24
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    Got a chance to fly the NASA f104 themed model yesterday, flew dead straight with perfect ejection on an f25-6 to about 1500' and landed with no damage, baffle worked great.

    Frank

  25. #25
    Join Date
    27th January 2009
    Location
    Oregon
    Posts
    2,392
    I've been nagging John to do a version of the normal interceptor wraps that would fit the Trajector, and here is what he came up with, fresh from the post office this afternoon. I gave him a couple of feedback items since he was not able to test this out on a kit before sending to me, but they weren't major and I think it came out nicely. I altered mine for rail buttons(not installed yet) and re-shaped the pods and painted them red and put them on the wings only since I think it looks more interceptor-ish that way.

    Frank
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  26. #26
    Join Date
    22nd February 2016
    Location
    Suffolk County NY
    Posts
    22
    I just finished one, and I have to clear coat it.... what’s the verdict, gents? on the best way?


    Sent from my iPhone using Rocketry Forum
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  27. #27
    Join Date
    22nd February 2016
    Location
    Suffolk County NY
    Posts
    22
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    Sent from my iPhone using Rocketry Forum

  28. #28
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Looks GREAT slipkid!!! I used what John Pursley (designer of the skin) recommended - Clear Minwax Polycrylic in a spray can and have used it on another build since and agree with John that it is awesome!

    Here's a little video I created after my RTF after a 30 year "hold" with my Trajector.



    "5 beautiful flights + 4 excellent recoveries - 1 hard landing - 90 minute repair = 1 EXCELLENT Return to Flight day!!!"

    Enjoy!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  29. #29
    Join Date
    3rd August 2017
    Location
    Nashville, TN
    Posts
    19
    Frank, your "interceptor-ish" Trajector really does look awesome! Nice job buddy!
    Classic Orbit
    NAR # 217510
    MC2/HARA
    www.classicorbit.com
    "FLY what you test... TEST what you FLY!!!"

  30. #30
    Join Date
    22nd February 2016
    Location
    Suffolk County NY
    Posts
    22
    Hello all!

    Got a break in the weather to launch my NASA Trajector.
    Click image for larger version. 

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