Clear payload tubes for HP rockets

bobtheshortstop

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Not sure if this is the correct area to post this but, does anyone know where to buy clear payload tubes for high power rockets? I bought a 2.2” one from Apogee and it’s to flimsy to put on my PML Phobos. I’m trying to put something together for a couple night launches at LDRS. Thanks!
 

loopy

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I don't think I've ever seen a clear payload tube on an HPR rocket. The material used in the LPR stuff doesn't really lend itself to HPR rockets as you've seen. I would imagine anything strong enough would be too heavy.
 

bobtheshortstop

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I don't think I've ever seen a clear payload tube on an HPR rocket. The material used in the LPR stuff doesn't really lend itself to HPR rockets as you've seen. I would imagine anything strong enough would be too heavy.
Somebody makes them. I’ve seen someone launch a 4” Nike smoke with a clear payload tube and LEDs in it. I just can’t remember where he told me I could get them.
 

tsmith1315

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Clear polycarbonate tube is on Amazon, but finding usable diameter and thickness may be tricky.
 

David_Stack

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A quick trek to the Google-verse reveals a number of suppliers of polycarbonate tubing in various diameters. Most seem to be 1/8" wall, which may be a problem (though those with 3D printers could likely print appropriate transitions/nosecones as necessary).

Example: https://www.acmeplastics.com/cut-to-size-clear-acrylic-tube

and as noted, weight could be an issue

Ninja'd by Neil...
 

neil_w

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Note they list several different wall thicknesses, including 1/8" and 1/16", for tubes up to 3" OD. Above that, it's 1/8" minimum.

They let you order by the foot, up to 8' pieces. UPS Ground Shipping a 3" x 24" piece to NJ was quoted at about $15, for what it's worth. Shipping on longer pieces gets more expensive very quickly.
 

bobtheshortstop

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A quick trek to the Google-verse reveals a number of suppliers of polycarbonate tubing in various diameters. Most seem to be 1/8" wall, which may be a problem (though those with 3D printers could likely print appropriate transitions/nosecones as necessary).

Example: https://www.acmeplastics.com/cut-to-size-clear-acrylic-tube

and as noted, weight could be an issue

Ninja'd by Neil...
This might work, I’m a little weary of 1/4” wall thickness though. So I would have to have a special transition for the coupler and nose cone. I’m starting to think I’ll just make a mid power rocket with beefed up Estes tubing.
 

bobtheshortstop

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Note they list several different wall thicknesses, including 1/8" and 1/16", for tubes up to 3" OD. Above that, it's 1/8" minimum.

They let you order by the foot, up to 8' pieces. UPS Ground Shipping a 3" x 24" piece to NJ was quoted at about $15, for what it's worth. Shipping on longer pieces gets more expensive very quickly.
This seems like the best option so far. Lots of sizes and thicknesses available
 

bibbster

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Would anyone happen to have a 6" long piece of clear tube that would fit inside a BT80 tube?
 

CoyoteNumber2

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McMaster-Carr has some polycarbonate tubes in 1/16" wall thickness, and some sizes are available in 1-, 2-, 3-, and 4-foot lengths.

I suppose if you were willing to put in the effort, you could get an oversized tube, turn it down to a "standard" rocket diameter (and wall thickness), and polish it back to clear.
 
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Many camera ports I've seen on HPR seem to scratch quickly upon descent. Maybe not on a H or I, but probably on bigger motors. I'm not sure why this happens or if it would happen to an acrylic payload section. Is it because of heat, stress, or dust in the atmosphere...
 

DeeRoc29

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