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A few Estes V2 Questions

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Blast it Tom!

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Oh, yes... I haven't even had my first BAR launch and I roped myself into building an Estes V2 (24mm D/E power) for my brother-in-law. He was enthused about the rockets I was building so I thought he'd like the kit - we were at the store, he loved the kit, but it turns out he kinda expected me to do the building. No problem, really, I like to build. But just a couple of quickies - I went back a few pages and couldn't find any recent threads.

1. This plastic Estes is using... it feels like polypropylene, which virtually nothing sticks to. Does anybody know what it is? Directions mention CA for the rear centering ring, does anybody have any experience with this, or any suggestions for anything better?
2. How do you fill the mold seams on these pieces? Many coats of sandable primer? I figure if I can't hide'em I can probably run a paint line along them, but still...
3. I've thought of a minor deviation from the instructions, that is, instead of gluing the whole engine mount/read tailcone/centering rings in at one shot, put the CA around the rear centering ring, push the assembly into the main body tube to set the distance, attach/space the fins, then (after plenty of glue drying time, pull the tailcone/fins.engine mount back out, thoroughly fillet the fins inside and out, then with that assembly bascially rock solid, proceed with the gluing of the whole tailcone/fins/engine mount to the main body tube. I figured to do that in 2 stages as well, get the front ring glue in place, insert front ring part way, place glue for rear centering ring, and for tailcone/body tube joint, and finish sliding it togther (hoping I haven't forgotten the shock cord!)
4. Last one: This big boy has a 3/16" launch lug! Any problems replacing it with a 1/8" lug or just flying it off a 1/8" rod anyway? Is 36" long enough?

Thanks all, I hope I'm not retreading too much old ground...
 

BEC

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Some really good ideas in this thread: https://www.oldrocketforum.com/showthread.php?t=14277

I didn't use epoxy but I did follow this general approach both on a V-2 and on a Silver Comet, I used what I generally do for paper-to-plastic joints: Pacer Formula 560 or equivalent. If I were to do one today I might try Chris Michielssen's favorite glue for that sort of joint - Beacon Fabri-Tac.

The BT-80 V2 is big enough and heavy enough that 3/16s is a good idea. That said, I have seen them flown from 1/8 inch rods on occasion....it's just that 3/16 is much stiffer. I prefer to fly mine off a 3/16 x 4 foot rod myself.
 

RainierWolfcastle

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I papered my fins and made sure they were well bonded to the motor mount tube, that oldrocketforum thread is an excellent guide for the order to do things. Mine has flown on everything from D-G motors (no motor block, 24mm aeropac retainer) and only finally met its demise from spending a winter caught fairly high in a tree.
 

rklapp

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The hard part for me is to get the fin tabs to glue to the motor tube because you can't see the tab actually touching the motor tube. In hindsight, epoxy would've been much better than wood glue (I think I used TBIII at the time). The plan for #3 is admirable but risky in that if things don't fit, you're screwed/glued/tatoo'd.

I'm not sure which glue you're using with the tail cone. There's white glue (good for paper), yellow glue (wood, I prefer TBII), CA (super glue at various degrees of thickness, beware of thin cause it runs down to where you don't want it to go), and epoxy (5/15/30 minutes, I prefer Bob's). Sorry if you know this already. Don't use CA for inserting a MT into a BT or it will get stuck. Better to use lots of yellow glue so the MT can slide into the BT to the proper position.
 

Blast it Tom!

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Well, thanks all! Yes, the old rocket forum thread was good, he thought it through better than I did. I hadn't thought that access to the motor tube/fin joints would be limited by the centering rings, but that is certainly true. So my step #3 may have just gone up in smoke, as both CR8050s are well attached (TBIII) to the motor tube and filleted. I could cut the access pies out of the rear ring, though and still have a shot at it.

The plastic kinda throws me. I'm used to solvent cements as would be used on styrene plastic models, but I guess CA or epoxy sticks to whatever this stuff is well enough - though I did figure I'd do as others and rough it up with 220 grit. Yes, RK, I have a pretty decent working knowledge of glues, it's just this plastic, which to me (in other applications) is notorious for not holding glue very well, particularly if it's polypropylene (typical blow-mold plastic).

Lastly, I gotta check out fin papering - I've not tried it yet. I like to at least round my leading edges, so the papering - what weight, type, etc. is a question to me, though I see the point of not snapping fins along grain lines.

Thanks again all! Now down to the shop to see how bad I messed myself up!

ETA: Messed up pretty bad. Though I was very meticulous with the measurements for the centering ring locations, as currently places they do not permit the rear centering ring to seat on the plastic tail cone. So I'll have to take some length off of the glue flange on the tail cone to allow the rear centering ring to seat.
 
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jrap330

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Well, thanks all! Yes, the old rocket forum thread was good, he thought it through better than I did. I hadn't thought that access to the motor tube/fin joints would be limited by the centering rings, but that is certainly true. So my step #3 may have just gone up in smoke, as both CR8050s are well attached (TBIII) to the motor tube and filleted. I could cut the access pies out of the rear ring, though and still have a shot at it.

The plastic kinda throws me. I'm used to solvent cements as would be used on styrene plastic models, but I guess CA or epoxy sticks to whatever this stuff is well enough - though I did figure I'd do as others and rough it up with 220 grit. Yes, RK, I have a pretty decent working knowledge of glues, it's just this plastic, which to me (in other applications) is notorious for not holding glue very well, particularly if it's polypropylene (typical blow-mold plastic).

Lastly, I gotta check out fin papering - I've not tried it yet. I like to at least round my leading edges, so the papering - what weight, type, etc. is a question to me, though I see the point of not snapping fins along grain lines.

Thanks again all! Now down to the shop to see how bad I messed myself up!

ETA: Messed up pretty bad. Though I was very meticulous with the measurements for the centering ring locations, as currently places they do not permit the rear centering ring to seat on the plastic tail cone. So I'll have to take some length off of the glue flange on the tail cone to allow the rear centering ring to seat.
Papering..most just use printer paper...and as for rounding fins.....no one every explain should you go all the way to the tip of fin (100%) coverage.....or do you do what I did once...almost to the tip...so you see paper edge. A question for more experience Rocketeers to answer
 

Scott_650

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Papering..most just use printer paper...and as for rounding fins.....no one every explain should you go all the way to the tip of fin (100%) coverage.....or do you do what I did once...almost to the tip...so you see paper edge. A question for more experience Rocketeers to answer
Any close-grained paper works - until I ran out, the leftover envelops from my daughter’s baby shower was my favorite. Now it’s 20lb bond/copier paper. 90% of my builds are LPR and I don’t care enough about performance to airfoil or even round fins so I sandwich mine - the higher a rocket goes the further I have to walk. But if you’re going to round the leading edge use the wrap method - lay the fin down, trace all edges except the leading edge, flip it along that edge, finish tracing, cut out, apply glue (I apply to the fin, some folks apply to the paper) and wrap tightly. As much as it’s borderline blasphemy among the TBII and epoxy faithful my favorite glue for papering fins is...Elmer’s School Glue. I think the thinness and higher water content increases your working time and penetration. Others use glue sticks, which I’ve never had decent results with so try different stuff. I also press the wet papered fin between Dollar Store cutting boards under a huge pile of my son’s old college text books - usually overnight.

Try different techniques, do some rummaging around the web and see what others do, you’ll either find a way that works for you or not. Between filling/sanding and papering I paper because it’s less sanding and the fins are somewhat strengthened. The finish isn’t as smooth as filling/sanding can be but it’s good enough from 5-ish feet so it suits me. YMMV!

Along with the thread on YORF check out the already mentioned Model Rocket Building Blog by Chris Michielssen - his builds are clean, logical, and easy to follow. Good luck on your V-2!
 

jrap330

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Ok, so when you state.."flip over and finish tracing.......you are using one sheet of material to cover both sides...as if wrapping a gift? Don't you get some wrinkles, bubbles by wrapping paper over one side to the next, especially as it wraps over the leading (top) edge of the fin?
 

samb

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When I built mine I think I used whatever thick CA Hobby Lobby had on their shelf. Before assembly I washed the plastic parts with dish soap and warm water, then gave them a good rub with a scotchbrite pad. That seam was a b____, I think it took several iterations of Testors or Squadron white plastic putty and CA to fill.
FWIW I couldn't bear to look at mine with a rounded nose so I made a wee paper cap and CA'ed and Bondo'ed the s___ out of it until it stuck. That made me happier. :)

DSC01638 (683x1024).jpgDSC01843 (683x1024).jpg
 

Scott_650

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Ok, so when you state.."flip over and finish tracing.......you are using one sheet of material to cover both sides...as if wrapping a gift? Don't you get some wrinkles, bubbles by wrapping paper over one side to the next, especially as it wraps over the leading (top) edge of the fin?
Bubbles and wrinkles certainly can happen, it takes practice to get the paper on smoothly. Drawing a straight line through the center of the paper where the leading edge goes can help in keeping things squared up. Getting a feeling for the right amount of glue - enough that you can work the paper smooth but not so much that the paper wrinkles - does take practice.
 

Blast it Tom!

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Much thanks all, and Dave thanks for the pictures, my brother-in-law will be tickled. I've come up with a plan, no time to detail tonight but the mid-centering ring is off now and will be replaces with a twin-layer split ring with the splits 90° away from on another. And samb, you're quite right, a point is necessary!
 

rklapp

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Lastly, I gotta check out fin papering - I've not tried it yet. I like to at least round my leading edges, so the papering - what weight, type, etc. is a question to me, though I see the point of not snapping fins along grain lines.
I use Avery full sheet label paper. I stick all of the fins on the adhesive then place another label sheet on top. I then use the hobby knife to divide them individually and use an sanding block/emery board along the edges to remove the excess from the fins. I then round the edges.
 

Blast it Tom!

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Well, I said I had a plan for my SNAFU, and would detail it, but this is from my phone while the big Windows 10 update is installing. So what I've done is to remove the lower large centering ring. I CA'd the bottom centering ring and shoved the engine mount into the plastic tail cone and then that assembly into the body tube. With the upper centering ring still in place, this will hold the alignment. Then I'll assemble the fins, fillet inside and out as best as I can, and replace the middle centering ring with a 2 layer split ring. Then maybe I'll take some pics along the way and be proper about this!
 
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James Duffy

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A couple of tips for the Estes 1/25-scale V-2 that may be of help...

First, the fins on the stock kit are way, way oversized. However, they can be trimmed back to a more scale-like profile without compromising stability as long as the kit is otherwise built stock. A template to trim the fins is attached.

Second, I offer a set of water-side decals for this kit that will allow the builder to choose from four different V-2 schemes. Two of these are wartime variants and the other two are post-war schemes.


James
 

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Blast it Tom!

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Well for Pete's sake, Jim! If I had know about yours I probably would have got that instead of the Estes version! But much thanks for the fin-trimming template.

Now my brother-in-law wants to paint it with the black and white roll pattern that Dave F. showed in his first picture above. Would your decal set have anything for that variant? I might order it anyway just for the finishing guide, but that original B & W pattern looks to be pretty much without further markings.

Thanks again!

Edited to add: I went back and looked at your kit. I shouldn't have looked. Your V2 is sooo much better looking and true-to-life...
 
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Scott_650

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A couple of tips for the Estes 1/25-scale V-2 that may be of help...

First, the fins on the stock kit are way, way oversized. However, they can be trimmed back to a more scale-like profile without compromising stability as long as the kit is otherwise built stock. A template to trim the fins is attached.

Second, I offer a set of water-side decals for this kit that will allow the builder to choose from four different V-2 schemes. Two of these are wartime variants and the other two are post-war schemes.


James
Decals and V-2 in America dvd ordered! I have a set of Stickershock vinyl decals on hand but I know I’m going to build more than one V-2 - no way to beat the price of the Spacemonkey set. Thanks for the tip James!
 

James Duffy

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Decals and V-2 in America dvd ordered! I have a set of Stickershock vinyl decals on hand but I know I’m going to build more than one V-2 - no way to beat the price of the Spacemonkey set. Thanks for the tip James!
That was a nice little flurry of orders...thanks, guys!

Fun fact: Mark from Stickershock asked to use the artwork from this decal set for several of the V-2 variants he offers, including the very cool "Sandy" option.

James
 

Gerald

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I did mine with a leaf camo pattern. I also cut new fins out of basswood plywood, and the extra effort is worth it to me, (never break if have a ruff landing) I have found that I like to cut a small hole for a straw to enter and fill the cavity where the fins are supposed to attach to the motor mount, with expandable spray foam. Only adds grams to the rocket but really holds the fins and motor mount solid.
 

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hcmbanjo

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Papering..most just use printer paper...and as for rounding fins.....no one every explain should you go all the way to the tip of fin (100%) coverage.....or do you do what I did once...almost to the tip...so you see paper edge. A question for more experience Rocketeers to answer
You can roll the paper covering over the rounded leading edge of a fin.
Round only the leading edge of the balsa fin, leave the other edges square.
"Butterfly" the paper covering by cutting a mirror image, joined at the leading edge.
Apply glue to the (joined) leading edge line and one side of the fin.
Roll the paper down and over the leading edge line and smooth the glued half side of the fin.
Glue the other side of the fin.

This gives you a smooth rounded leading edge.
The edges of the paper covering are on the outside and trailing edges of the fin.
The edge can be sealed with CA glue. If applied well, there is no need to CA glue the rounded leading edge.

The first picture shows the fin set on the paper, no glue yet.
To the right of the "V" cut into the paper is the leading edge of the fin and where the paper will roll over the
rounded leading edge.

Paper Fins BigGirtha 7.JPG

The second picture shows the papered fin before trimming off the overhang paper.
The rounded leading edge is at the upper left.

Paper Fins BigGirtha 12.JPG
 

Ez2cDave

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I did mine with a leaf camo pattern. I also cut new fins out of basswood plywood, and the extra effort is worth it to me, (never break if have a ruff landing) I have found that I like to cut a small hole for a straw to enter and fill the cavity where the fins are supposed to attach to the motor mount, with expandable spray foam. Only adds grams to the rocket but really holds the fins and motor mount solid.
How do you prevent the Motor Mount Tube from being compressed by the Foam, as it expands ?

Dave F.
 

Blast it Tom!

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Chris, much thanks for that. Very good to "see" you again. I note that Pigasus had her first flight recently and flew and recovered perfectly; and while the A10-3T's in "Birdie" both CATO'd (blew their nozzles out), the rocket was undamaged. Here is my "recovery team" with Pigasus, her poor head laying on the ground like something from "Lord of the Flies":

Attach00_Cropped.jpg
 

Blast it Tom!

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How do you prevent the Motor Mount Tube from being compressed by the Foam, as it expands ?

Dave F.
I wondered about that myself. It seems like a reasonable technique as long as it has room to expand out the side hole before developing enough strength to smash the engine tube, which it must not have as we see Gerald's rocket taking flight... maybe a 1/4" hole or two? I wanted to thank Gerald as well for his post.

Next is the combination of those few grams, some fin paper, a heavier "E" composite engine (Maybe even "F"?) and the smaller, true-to-scale fins as noted by James Duffy - makes me think the full combination should be checked for stability, & may need more nose weight.

And speaking of that i wonder if I shouldn't look at securing the weight. Clay pressed into a nosecone relying only on it's adhesion to the plastic to keep it from falling due to strong acceleration leaves me feeling a little... insecure?
 

jrap330

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You can roll the paper covering over the rounded leading edge of a fin.
Round only the leading edge of the balsa fin, leave the other edges square.
"Butterfly" the paper covering by cutting a mirror image, joined at the leading edge.
Apply glue to the (joined) leading edge line and one side of the fin.
Roll the paper down and over the leading edge line and smooth the glued half side of the fin.
Glue the other side of the fin.

This gives you a smooth rounded leading edge.
The edges of the paper covering are on the outside and trailing edges of the fin.
The edge can be sealed with CA glue. If applied well, there is no need to CA glue the rounded leading edge.

The first picture shows the fin set on the paper, no glue yet.
To the right of the "V" cut into the paper is the leading edge of the fin and where the paper will roll over the
rounded leading edge.

View attachment 428130

The second picture shows the papered fin before trimming off the overhang paper.
The rounded leading edge is at the upper left.

View attachment 428131
nice thanks
 

jrap330

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Chris, much thanks for that. Very good to "see" you again. I note that Pigasus had her first flight recently and flew and recovered perfectly; and while the A10-3T's in "Birdie" both CATO'd (blew their nozzles out), the rocket was undamaged. Here is my "recovery team" with Pigasus, her poor head laying on the ground like something from "Lord of the Flies":

View attachment 428132
I think you need to put an "age" requirement next time you hire a recovery team. :)
 

James Duffy

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And speaking of that i wonder if I shouldn't look at securing the weight. Clay pressed into a nosecone relying only on it's adhesion to the plastic to keep it from falling due to strong acceleration leaves me feeling a little... insecure?
It is remarkably secure, but your concern is understandable. If you'd like to make sure that everything stays put you can pour some epoxy onto the compressed clay, perhaps adding a bit of chopped fiberglass. Don't make the layer too thick, though, as the exothermic properties of a thick epoxy plug might distort the nose cone.

James
 

hcmbanjo

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Chris, much thanks for that. Very good to "see" you again. I note that Pigasus had her first flight recently and flew and recovered perfectly; and while the A10-3T's in "Birdie" both CATO'd (blew their nozzles out), the rocket was undamaged.
I'm glad the Pigasus flew well for you and yours!
I've been hearing about a few A10 engines having malfunctions.
If it's any consolation, the Birdie will also fly with an A3-4t motor.
 

Blast it Tom!

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Yessir, I'll have to pick some up next time I'm at the hobby store. I think that 10N spike might be too much for a T motor - both of them acted like firecrackers!
 

Blast it Tom!

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And FWIW, here is James Duffy's actual scale V-2 fin overlaid on the Estes fin. Oh, yes, things are going very slowly here... But yes, I think I'll have to get into a stability calc if I use the (nicer looking) scale fins.
Corrected_Fin.jpg
 
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