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Black Powder Altitude Records?

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Bruce

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Does anyone know what the highest altitude reached on black powder only motors is?

What might be a good combination of BP motors to attempt a high flight? Do you think perhaps an F15-0 to a C6-0 with a C6-7 for the sustainer / third stage would be good? It's too bad the FSI F100 and F7 motors are not still in production, as it makes it harder if you use only Estes motors.

Would using a cluster in the first stage be of any benefit?

There could also be the challenge of finding the rocket after a high flight. Are there tracking transmitters that might fit in a BT-20?

Any thoughts?
 

neil_w

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I think it's probably hard to guess at the optimal configuration. Would suggest experimenting with models in OR or Rocksim and getting an idea for what works best.

Yes, finding that rocket will be a challenge. :)
 

prfesser

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Tripoli used to have a BP motor record. I think it was a single-motor category, and I suspect (don't recall) that it was one of Rocketflite's H-220 motors.

I suppose they retired it because there weren't any big BP motors anymore.

Best -- Terry
 

dhbarr

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Just a quick pass suggests F15, E9, C5 could be about a mile up -- but yeah, at these sizes and heights you only need to put a tracker in the ones you want to get back :-D

EDUT: This is not me recommending throwaways, this is a reminder that almost nobody's eyes are good enough to resolve an 18mm * 20cm object from a mile away.
 
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n27sb

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I think I could probably crack a mile with a 2 stage BP and get the first stage back. That would include a GPS tracker and electronic deploy.
I originally looked at this prior to my 2 stage F flight with composite fuel and electronic airstart.
I got a little more altitude but tripled the complexity.

And yes, you need to get the parts back and be able to re-fly.
 

ksaves2

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We sponsored a BP altitude contest years ago at LDRS. The highest flight was about 10k with three stages of Silver Streak H motors.

M
Holee guacamole! I wasn’t around back in the day of the “H” BP motors and wonder if they were more susceptible to CATO’s if they weren’t stored carefully to avoid thermal cycling or rough handling that could crack the grain? Prfesser? Kurt
 

heada

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38mm and 54mm BP motors are standard items in the fireworks hobby(not called 38mm or 54mm, they're called 3 pound and 6 pound). Homemade, hand-rammed, 1-time use. It'd be interesting to see how those would do in the rocketry hobby.
 

prfesser

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Holee guacamole! I wasn’t around back in the day of the “H” BP motors and wonder if they were more susceptible to CATO’s if they weren’t stored carefully to avoid thermal cycling or rough handling that could crack the grain? Prfesser? Kurt
There were more than a few CATOs of those F/G/H BP motors. At the first launch I attended, the LCO said "If you haven't seen an F Silver Streak, this will be spectacular". He was right. BOOM! :)

38mm and 54mm BP motors are standard items in the fireworks hobby(not called 38mm or 54mm, they're called 3 pound and 6 pound). Homemade, hand-rammed, 1-time use. It'd be interesting to see how those would do in the rocketry hobby.
The paper casings for 3 pound motors are usually 1.5" od, 1" id, about 10" long, so maybe a G motor. 6 pound are 1.5" id, 2" od, about 15" long, which would probably be a full H, maybe a baby I. I've heard of some guys making large BP motors using fiberglass casings, but I've never seen one.

Large coreburning BP motors have a progressive burn that's not terribly suitable for high-power rocketry. David Sleeter's Amateur Rocket Motor Construction describes an I-100 motor: 1 1/8: id, 15" of modified BP; initial thrust about 12 lb, maximum 40 lb at about 2.5 seconds, dropping to 12 lb again at 3 seconds, burn time 3.4 seconds. It would need a lightweight rocket, maybe 2.5 lb. I'd love to see that sort of thing fly, though!

Best -- Terry
 

ksaves2

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There were more than a few CATOs of those F/G/H BP motors. At the first launch I attended, the LCO said "If you haven't seen an F Silver Streak, this will be spectacular". He was right. BOOM! :)



The paper casings for 3 pound motors are usually 1.5" od, 1" id, about 10" long, so maybe a G motor. 6 pound are 1.5" id, 2" od, about 15" long, which would probably be a full H, maybe a baby I. I've heard of some guys making large BP motors using fiberglass casings, but I've never seen one.

Large coreburning BP motors have a progressive burn that's not terribly suitable for high-power rocketry. David Sleeter's Amateur Rocket Motor Construction describes an I-100 motor: 1 1/8: id, 15" of modified BP; initial thrust about 12 lb, maximum 40 lb at about 2.5 seconds, dropping to 12 lb again at 3 seconds, burn time 3.4 seconds. It would need a lightweight rocket, maybe 2.5 lb. I'd love to see that sort of thing fly, though!

Best -- Terry
Thanks for the replyTerry! That is absolutely great! Kurt
 

Rocketjunkie

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The Rocketflite motors worked well. After a few years if not stored in climate controlled conditions, they became bombs. We learned to light them at the bottom, then they worked usually. Here's a 5 stage rack rocket using G160's :)
The back of the rocket got so hot it blew off sometime during the 4th motor burn.
 

BABAR

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I've flown 4 stage rack rockets with Estes F15's in each stage. Didn't put an altimeter in them, could use a Firefly or similar to see how high it goes. Sims indicate around 3000 feet. An optimized design should get a lot more. Just keep it as light as possible. Here's a build of a 3 F15 rack rocket https://www.rocketryforum.com/threads/rack-rocket-build.59577/
Nice! And TRFers get on my case when I talk about rockets dropping 18 mm and 24 mm cardboard motor casings, LOL.
 

Joekeyo

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Designed to carry an Altimeter 2, probably wont break any"C" impulse records, but it could get close.
20200909_143710.jpg
 

GlenP

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Instead of a traditional cluster, you could try parallel staging the first stage with strap on boosters.
 
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