Building an Outlander? (kind of long...)

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

Steve

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2012
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
During the construction of my 24mm Outlander (it’s about 95% complete), it occurred to me that if I intended to build another one (and I do), there are more than a couple things I would do differently. I decided to jot these things down, as my mind is way too weak in the memory-retention department. Then I thought that maybe this would be useful for someone else planning to build this rocket, so I might as well post it here. Many of these items are mentioned in various reviews and discussions both here at TRF and EMRR, but I haven’t seen them all combined in one area - so here goes: (I’ll try and keep things in somewhat the same order in which they are likely to occur in the construction).

• I used BB’s instead of the plastic ‘hinge balls’. This idea was shamelessly stolen from stevem, and I can’t think of any good reason not to use them again.
• The dowels used in the leg assemblies are cut at various angles. Not too difficult – but I was more careful than I needed to be. As it turns out, the cuts don’t have to be perfect. No harm done, just wasted some time.
• The picture on the package shows a distinct separation between the die-cut balsa pieces and the dowel glued to its bottom. I went with wood glue for this connection, and after it dried, I was left with such an obvious string of uneven dried glue along this joint that I decided just to do my best to fill in this area with wood filler and sand the joint smooth. Maybe I’ll go with CA glue next time. Anybody else have this situation?
• I went with the stock paint scheme and as such I painted as I went along, as suggested in the instructions. When it came to the support struts, I was tempted to paint both sides completely, but ended up masking off the area which would be glued to the balsa leg assembly. Then I dry-fitted the pieces and lightly scored an outline around the struts. I scraped away the paint inside this area and glued the struts on the legs. I just don’t want to glue anything to a painted surface.
• The angles of the legs at the leg/foot connection point needed a little sanding to ensure the bottom of the leg would make good contact with the surface on the inside bottom of the foot. Either I goofed, or the template was off a little bit. I just grouped all four legs together and sanded them at the same time.
• The instructions say to sand the gear-housing-cover balsa sheet smooth. I did, and I also used sanding sealer and filler. I think I should have just sanded the big triangle pieces and left the spacer pieces un-sanded. The flat sides of these pieces will not be seen, and after I assembled the gear housing covers, it appears that my sanding caused the covers to end up being just a bit too narrow. Not noticeable until it was time to attach the housing covers later on...
• I used a semi-sharp hobby knife to separate the plastic pieces from each other, and it’s no small miracle that I avoided slicing an artery, possibly ruining my wife’s new couch. I will use a Dremel and a cutting wheel next time.
• As mentioned in previous posts – the 2" long dowel used to line up the little holes in the centering rings is too long. This dowel can either be cut, or even omitted as long as care is taken lining up these little holes.
• Since I went with a 24mm mount, I had to duplicate these little holes in my new centering rings. I used the old rings as a template and as a result, the little holes ended up so close to the big center hole that the material was beginning to tear in places. I soaked some thin CA into these places for strength, and it’s a good thing because it took more than a bit of forceful wiggling to get the leg hinge assembly dowels threaded up through these holes. Next time I won’t make my little holes so close to the big one.
• I made my glue fillets too thick on the bottom of the centering ring which butts up against the green ring on the engine mount. I discovered this when I dry-fitted the nozzle and it wouldn’t seat like it should have. The nozzle fit just fine after (quite) a bit of sanding. I was a bit concerned that I might sand away the notches – leaving too little space for the elastic cords – but it worked ok.
• I had a bit of a hard time getting my little tanks painted without blowing them over. I tried standing them on end and weighing them down with quarters, but that didn’t help much. When the time came to paint the big tanks, I tried standing them up on a piece of double-sided tape, and this worked great. I flipped them over after they dried, painted the other end, and kicked myself for not thinking of this earlier.
• The instructions say to paint the (big) BT before marking it. While reading a review on EMRR, I was happy to find someone else who thought this was an odd thing to do. As it turned out, the 3-3/8” mark was wrong, (for me, at least) and the large tank and launch lug lines weren’t crucial anyway. I probably won’t bother making these marks next time.
• I forgot where I read it, but someone else recommended sanding (slightly round) the root edge of the completed gear housing assemblies so as to make for a better joint with the BT. This a good idea that would have saved a headache for me had I done it ahead of time. I ended up with substantial gaps that I did my best to fill while adding my fillets.
• While dry-fitting the completed gear housing to the engine mount, it occurred to me that if I applied a ring of glue to the inside of the housing as shown in the instructions, the glue would likely be scraped off by the bottom centering ring. This didn’t seem like it would make for a strong joint, so I slid the un-glued housing up the mount until the top of the small BT (at the center of the housing) was just below the centering ring which it will be flush to, then applied the glue to the ring before sliding the housing the rest of the way home.
• After dry-fitting my tanks (I haven’t glued them on yet), it is obvious that I will have to cut a notch in one of them to allow it to fit around the launch lug. I thought I screwed something up, but I felt better when I read that someone else had the same situation.

That’s about it, but for one thing that’s got me wondering because I hadn’t seen it mentioned anywhere before: Does it seem strange to anybody else that the two BT’s are glued to the engine mount leaving a 1” wide gap between the two? I know the tanks will mostly cover up the opening, but why it would it be designed this way, I have no idea.

Anyway, hope this is helpful to anyone who took the time to read it :)

S..

(edited for speling) :)
 

Zack Lau

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 13, 2009
Messages
538
Reaction score
1
A razor saw works great for cutting apart the plastic pieces.
 

Bill

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2010
Messages
484
Reaction score
0
Originally posted by Bushrat
• Since I went with a 24mm mount, I had to duplicate these little holes in my new centering rings. I used the old rings as a template and as a result, the little holes ended up so close to the big center hole that the material was beginning to tear in places. I soaked some thin CA into these places for strength, and it’s a good thing because it took more than a bit of forceful wiggling to get the leg hinge assembly dowels threaded up through these holes. Next time I won’t make my little holes so close to the big one.
I have yet to begin building mine, but our club did a group order with BMS for these rings cut from 1/16" plywood. Stronger than cardboard and much easier than cutting our own.


Bill
 

gerbs4me

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 21, 2009
Messages
3,110
Reaction score
5
Location
Iowa
razor saws are good to have, 1/16 in. ply. would be the way to go
 

powderburner

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
7,399
Reaction score
6
That's a really good summary.
When I think about building mine, I can see where these suggestions would have been great to have (ahead of time).
Thanks for making the effort to get all this info put together!
 

astronboy

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 11, 2002
Messages
2,618
Reaction score
0
Thanks so much for these suggestions/comments/thoughts....

I have not yet started my Outlander, but wanted it to be 24mm, so I have saved your suggestions and added them to the kit.

Thanks again!!

Phred
 

Steve

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2012
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
I'm really glad someone might find it useful! :)

I was ready to build a model rocket that was a bit more of a challenge when I got this one. Most of the others I had been doing were all 3FNC, 4FNC, etc. (I even picked up a USS Enterprise and a Klingon Battle Cruiser because they're skill level 4). I think the Outlander is a satisfying kit for anyone else who enjoys building them as much (or even more?) than flying them.

S..
 

BobH48

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
3,388
Reaction score
6
I'm almost finished with my Outlander also. I ran into most of the same issues.

I made my 24mm motor mount a little different than what you describe. I was only planning to use "D" engines in this one so I made the forward part of the mount with the kit parts (forward three centering rings).

I then glued the green ring up against the bottom centering ring with the small holes. I cut the rest of the tube off below the green ring.

I took a 2.75" piece of BT-50 and mounted the engine hook on that and used a AR5055 ring to hold the engine hook.

I glued the tube to the green ring and used a circle cutter to enlarge the hole in the rear most ring and glued it up against the 5055 ring.
 

Steve

Well-Known Member
Joined
Sep 23, 2012
Messages
312
Reaction score
0
Originally posted by BobH48

I made my 24mm motor mount a little different than what you describe.
I only plan on using D's also - next time I'll try your method. Looks like an easier mod.

S..
 

stevem

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2009
Messages
1,613
Reaction score
0
great post Bushrat - good info!

one more suggestion - it is possible to build the Outlander with removable leg assembly. I am glad I went to the trouble since 2 legs broke on first flight due to chute not opening fully. I was able to remove the leg assembly, make repairs and we flew it again later that day.

info in this thread

this is a fun rocket - really needs to have the 24mm engine
 

BobH48

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
3,388
Reaction score
6
I updated my motor mount diagram to make it clearer.

Bushrat.... That is great information for anyone building one. I have a second one and will use the BB trick on that one.

I ripped the silicone tubing putting one of those plastic beads into it. I used a piece of silicone fuel tubing from my RC stuff to replace it. The fuel tubing has a much thicker wall and I would use that as a replacement for the kit tubing.

Steve..... I will certainly keep the removeable leg assembly in mind when I build my other one.
 

bcdlr

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jul 16, 2004
Messages
218
Reaction score
0
Just got finished reading this and the previous thread. Great stuff.
Oh shoot. Have to add another rocket to my list!!
So, everyone agrees it needs to be 24 mm?
Anybody build one and shoot it on C's?
My 'primary' field is small, so if I can reliably fly it on C's I'd rather build it that way...
 

BobH48

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
3,388
Reaction score
6
Originally posted by bcdlr
So, everyone agrees it needs to be 24 mm?
Anybody build one and shoot it on C's?
My 'primary' field is small, so if I can reliably fly it on C's I'd rather build it that way...
Why don't you build it with a 24mm motor mount and use an adapter to fly it on C's ? ;)

Then you will be able to use D's when you have the opportunity.

I may try mine on a C for the first flight.... The instructions in the kit says it will fly on a B :rolleyes: ... I don't know about that.

24mm_18mm_adapter.jpg
 

stevem

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 7, 2009
Messages
1,613
Reaction score
0
nice job Bushrat - great looking Outlander. First one I've seen with stock paint, looks sharp and just like the package! no small feat.

When I got my Outlander I was skeptical about it flying well on the recomended motors. I weighed the kit before assembly and I don't recall exactly what it weighed - I know it was right on the edge of 18mm motor capability and that was without paint, glue or mods.

First flight was on a C11 and it was weak - damage on landing because of short altitude. Second flight was a D12-3 which was about as perfect a flight as you could ask for.
 

BobH48

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
3,388
Reaction score
6
I finally finished this. I had a bit of trouble painting the shroud.

After it was painted, the mold seam was much more noticable than I thought it would be and there was a gouge that I hadn't seen. :(

So I sanded it all off, filled the seam and re-painted it only to drop it while it was still wet. :mad:

I wiped off as much paint as I could while it was still wet and let it dry and sanded it all again. :rolleyes:

I re-painted it again and when I put it down to dry, I ended up brushing my shirt against it. :rolleyes:

By this time I thought it was doomed and the bad spot wasn't too visible so I just left it. :)
 
Top