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Beginning Model Rocketry FAQ's

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Pippen

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Welcome to TRF’s Beginner’s Forum, a place for newcomers to model rocketry. Whether you’re a student, adult, teacher, or youth leader, please feel free to ask your questions here—no matter how basic. And be sure and come back and post pictures of your completed rockets because we love pictures!

Where can I find a glossary of model rocketry terms and acronyms?
https://www.rocketreviews.com/glossary.html

What are the parts of a model rocket and how do they work?
http://www.apogeerockets.com/education/rocket_parts.asp

Don’t know where to begin? Here’s a simple overview of model rocketry to get you started:
(under construction)

What supplies and equipment are needed need for a first rocket?
Model rocket kits will have a list of needed supplies, so check the manufacturer’s recommendations! Ready-to-fly kits will need few additional supplies. A typical supply list for rocket kits that require construction might look like this:

Building
Model rocket kit (Skill Level 1 suggested for beginners)
Ruler
Pencil
Hobby knife (ie Exacto brand)
Scissors
Glue (such as Elmer’s Glue-All or yellow wood glue such as Titebond II or Elmer’s Carpenter’s Glue)
Sandpaper
Masking Tape
Some kits require plastic cement (Note: the non-toxic plastic cement will not hold!)

Finishing
Sanding sealer (inexpensive, low odor sanding sealers such as Delta Ceramcoat can be found in the craft paint section at Wal-Mart or hobby/craft stores)
Paint brush for sanding sealer
Masking tape (blue paint tape works better than regular masking tape)
Spray primer
Paints (usually spray paints, for best results use same brand as primer)

Launching
Engines—check the kit instructions for manufacturer’s recommendations. The lowest power (lowest letter) engines are suggested for first flights.
Recovery wadding, igniters and igniter plugs (all typically included in engine packs)
Launch Pad
Launch Rod
Launch Controller
Batteries for the launch controller

Where can I find “How –To” Videos?
Rocketry How-To Part 1: How Model Rockets Work
Rocketry How-To Part 2: Components of a Model Rocket
Rocketry How-To Part 3: Construction Techniques and Supplies
Rocketry How-To Part 4: Finishing the Rocket’s Fins
Rocketry How-To Part 5: Assembling the Rocket
Rocketry How-To Part 6: Painting the Completed Rocket
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NQFx1qe6zww&feature=related

What should I take to a rocket launch?
http://rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?t=569

What do those letters and numbers (B6-4, C6-5, etc) on rocket engines mean?
Explanation: (under construction)
Flight diagram: http://www.fliskits.com/products/accessories/downloads/edp-005.pdf

What do I need to know about safety?
http://www.nar.org/NARmrsc.html

Where can I find reviews and tips on model rocket kits?
http://www.rocketreviews.com/cgi-bin/reviews/arcbuild.cgi?ArcList&&ArcList

Where can I find ideas for rocketry on a limited budget?
http://www.rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?t=1086
http://www.rocketreviews.com/featured/story_featured20.shtml
http://www.howtobuildmodelrockets.20m.com/BudgetRocketryPage8.html

Where can I find others in my area to launch with?
National Association of Rocketry Clubs http://www.nar.org/NARseclist.php
Youth Rocketry Clubs w/ TRF member sponsors: http://rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?p=11337#post11337

Want to learn more? Check out these lists of model rocketry links compiled by TRF members (resources, vendors, organizations, etc) :
Member suggestions for beginners: http://rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?t=539
General: http://rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?t=110
 
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Pippen

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Where can I find educator resources?

Apogee Model Rocket Education Guide
http://www.apogeerockets.com/education/

Art Applewhite Rockets (free saucer patterns)
http://www.artapplewhite.com/

Boy Scout Space Exploration Merit Badge
http://www.rocketmime.com/space/space.html

Low-budget Rocketry Ideas
http://www.rocketreviews.com/featured/story_featured20.shtml

Estes Educator
http://www.esteseducator.com/

FlisKits Educators Page
http://www.fliskits.com/services/education/index.htm

NASA Aerospace Activities & Lessons
http://www.grc.nasa.gov/WWW/K-12/aeroact.htm

National Association of Rocketry (NAR) Educators Page
http://2020vertical.com/nar_edu_cd_dev/

Quest Aerospace Resource Central
http://www.questaerospace.com/rcentral-edresources.asp

Team America Rocketry Challenge (TARC)
http://www.rocketcontest.org/

4-H – National Association of Rocketry partnership
http://www.fourhcouncil.edu/nar.aspx
 
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