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Alpha Draco WS-199

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GlenP

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a secret experimental missile that was tested on a modified Honest John mobile launch platform.

This is sort of a fun-sport-size rendition in 18mm-powered cardstock.
 

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GlenP

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18mm mount and lug, wiper blade metal strip engine hook extends over the thrust ring.

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GlenP

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This is 110# paper.
Main body tubes, BT-50 and BT-20 size. I will roll a 13mm tube and cut the "warhead" (actually was just a ballistic test - not a warhead) fins from that tube. Transition and nose cone patterns shown in relative locations.

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GlenP

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Main body with transition assembly, now I can see that I lost a white band at the top of the "booster" somewhere. I might add a white cardstock wrap to cover that up here. I will update the PDF template later. The few photographs I could find did not seem to have much color accuracy, so I just went with the basic olive drab, kind of like an Honest John.

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GlenP

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Fold over fins sandwich a core of variable ply cardstock to simulate a tapered thickness cross section. I am still experimenting with this cardstock fin technique. So far, it adds a lot of labor for an imperceptible detail, so not sure if I will continue making fins like this on these small models.

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GlenP

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Do you score the outer skins at the taper lines?
Well, I score the paper only at the fold lines at the leading edge. and I thought I had them all lined up on the paper and scored them all at once, but one of them was a little bit off center. At the tapered thickness changes, i just drape the outer skin and burnish it down a little. I try to not crease it, but it kind of just happens that way. No need to score at the ply-changes.

Just finished the engine mount centering rings and am waiting for them to fully dry before installing it. I have made that mistake before, and the centering rings that you wrap from card stock strips really need to be fully dry, and a little loose in the outer body tube, before you try to install the engine mount.
 

GlenP

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Nothing unusual here, just a typical cardstock engine mount assembled with a glue stick and white glue. I put a small strip of cardstock with some white glue coating as kind of a blinder to help shield the end of the Kevlar, which is anchored to the homemade engine hook.


I can never make the cardstock cones go to a sharp tip, so I take it to about 5mm so I can get my bamboo BBQ skewer in there to help glue it. I may add a small dowel or balsa plug and just sharpie it to match the green as best I can. I forgot to include a shoulder for the nose cone in my template, I usually just make one from scraps.
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I really like the different fin patterns on this one.
 
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Cape Byron

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I'm impressed with your skills. My attempts at papercraft usually look like the dog chewed it...

Agree on the fin patterns. Very unusual, but effective.
 

GlenP

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Thanks! These are fun afternoon builds, they just take some practice. Printing intricate patterns on the ink jet printer is way easier than painting and masking! And this is about the only way I can get decent results with homemade "decals" in white on olive drab.

Final assembly stacked up:

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GlenP

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This would be a good candidate for a larger size model rocket, but hard to find detailed dimensions of this secret missile test for a true scale project. An interesting part of history in hypersonic research at the outer edges of the atmosphere that helped pave the way for faster and higher missiles and rockets like the X-15 and the first steps into space. That long conical nose cone was part of the lifting body that was rotated during the trajectory like a rotisserie to keep the heating spread around the body evenly. Amazing that they did all those trajectory and design calculations without the modern computers that we have now.
 

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Too much glare from the sun, the glossy clear coat is dry, but still looks a little wet due to the glare. I put a little orange post it note in the tip of the cone to keep the clear coat out so I can glue a tip in later, but I like how that orange tip looks, so I may roll something out of that orange post it note later. The paper really absorbs the clear coat, it takes a couple of light coats to get it to build up.

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I really wanted to add a boat tail to this one, but I don’t think the original had one. I have some aluminum tape, there are a couple of metallic bands I plan to add at the top and bottom ends of the main body after my final clear coat is done.
 
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GlenP

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One final touch, some metallic bands. Not sure if I will put a small chute in here or a streamer. Should be enough room for a chute in the upper BT-20 portion.
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I thought those camo chutes were cool from the Centuri Strike Force missile series.
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I wanted something a little more visible than that, and thought this homemade chute was appropriate. About 12” dia but pretty easy to pack to fit here.

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