Estes 1/200 Scale RTF Saturn V

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jahall4

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I think we’re just seeing the results of production variations of what is, in the larger scheme of things, a collection of relatively inexpensive injection molded plastic parts. My only caveats are to launch in as still air as you can with a BP C6-3 and make sure the fin unit doesn’t wobble. Much too nice of a rocket to crash or put in a tree or on a roof top
I think we are also seeing variations in the dia. of the motor used. It is going vary due to a) manf. tolerances and b) environment. I would bet good money that there is a correlation between humidity and a failure to get the motor inserted properly into the forward motor tube. Some describe having to twist it in others describe nothing special, what accounts for the difference?
 

kuririn

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I would bet good money that there is a correlation between humidity and a failure to get the motor inserted properly into the forward motor tube
I beg to differ. Don't see how humidity can affect a plastic motor receptacle.
 

jahall4

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I beg to differ. Don't see how humidity can affect a plastic motor receptacle.
And I agree with you if I'd been referring to plastic instead of cardboard. You might want to reread my post.
 

kuririn

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I would bet good money that there is a correlation between humidity and a failure to get the motor inserted properly into the forward motor tube. Some describe having to twist it in others describe nothing special, what accounts for the difference?
And I agree with you if I'd been referring to plastic instead of cardboard. You might want to reread my post.
There is no cardboard in this model. And I have read your quotes above. Like I said, humidity has no effect on plastic.
 

shreadvector

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There is no cardboard in this model. And I have read your quotes above. Like I said, humidity has no effect on plastic.

The C6-3 motor casing is cardboard. Sheesh. They swell when they absorb moisture from the air (you know...: "humidity").
 

jahall4

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The C6-3 motor casing is cardboard. Sheesh. They swell when they absorb moisture from the air (you know...: "humidity").
Thanks Fred, Glad someone else chimed in. I really don't like someone trying to say I said something I didn't.
 

kuririn

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The C6-3 motor casing is cardboard. Sheesh. They swell when they absorb moisture from the air (you know...: "humidity").
In that case the fit would be better rather than worse. The problem occurs when the motor is slid past the aft ring and the play in the rear ring's fit allows the front of the motor to misalign with the forward ring IF you don't pay attention and seat the motor well. Fortunately 99% of us are aware enough to ensure this is done before launch. The results speak for themselves.
 

kuririn

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I received mine from Estes today. However the offer for the poster is not working. I’m on mobile, so perhaps that is why. Has anyone successfully ordered their poster?
I just realized I may have disclosed info to the general public that should not have been, so I edited and deleted the body of this post. As Gilda Radner would say...….
NEVER MIND!
 
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kuririn

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OK, for those of you who tried to get the free poster and tried the link in the addendum in the kit, the URL is incorrect. I tried it with my first kit, got a missing page message, and assumed they were all out of the posters.
WRONG! Ordered a second kit recently and got an email from the vendor showing the CORRECT URL.
So contact your vendor or Estes customer service for the correct link. They still have the posters in stock. Just got a notice that mine is on its way.
 
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djmartins

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OK, for those of you who tried to get the free poster and tried the link in the addendum in the kit, the URL is incorrect. I tried it with my first kit, got a missing page message, and assumed they were all out of the posters.
WRONG! Ordered a second kit recently and got an email from the vendor showing the CORRECT URL.
So contact your vendor or Estes customer service for the correct link. They still have the posters in stock. Just got a notice that mine is on its way.
A quick google search shows an Estes link for a free Saturn V poster.
Is this what poster you are referring to?
Doesn't say anything about having to buy the kit....
 

kuririn

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A quick google search shows an Estes link for a free Saturn V poster.
Is this what poster you are referring to?
Doesn't say anything about having to buy the kit....
Probably.....
But I think the idea was, you buy the kit first, and they tell you where to go.
 

raptorbacon

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I tested mine out today. No wind. Using C6-3 engines and followed the addendum in the instructions to make sure they were seated properly. Both flights the rocket went up, curved, then went down. No straight flights. Anyone have any tips?
 

jahall4

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I tested mine out today. No wind. Using C6-3 engines and followed the addendum in the instructions to make sure they were seated properly. Both flights the rocket went up, curved, then went down. No straight flights. Anyone have any tips?
Welcome to the 1% :( you are in good company.

But seriously, there is still a good chance that the motors were not seated. Inspect the fore end of both motors and if you find any carbon residue on the motors, inspect fore motor mount tube (or well). You may find it has been deformed by heat.
 
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dpower

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I tested mine out today. No wind. Using C6-3 engines and followed the addendum in the instructions to make sure they were seated properly. Both flights the rocket went up, curved, then went down. No straight flights. Anyone have any tips?
Not judging, just trying to narrow things down - When was deployment in relation to the flight path? Was it straight when it left the rod, or did it take off at an angle? Standard length launch rod set 0 degrees from vertical? Was the rocket near the bottom of the rod for maximum guidance? Stock chute with just a few sheets of wadding? One was flown today at a local launch on a C6-3, in a 6-7mph wind, and while it arced over some, it was a relatively good flight, and deployed near apogee, perhaps just a bit past.

I flew mine on a D16-4, it was a nice straight flight. :D
 

raptorbacon

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Straight when leaving rod
Standard rod length that came with kit
Didnt measure but visually it was straight, which I normally do, by site for all my launches (the curve it did was hard to fathom was from a few degrees off)
rocket was about three inches from blast shield
stock chute with 7 or so sheets of wadding as in instuctions
 

kuririn

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Since all the QJet C and D flights seem to be straight, I'm guessing this is a power, not alignment problem. If off axis thrust or fin flutter were the problem it would be exacerbated with the higher impulse QJets.
My understanding is that certified motors can have up to a 20% variance in thrust. So if a C6 motor were in the lower end of that 20% couldn't we see a marginal condition? That would also explain why some C6 flights are straight and some aren't.
FWIW flew mine on a QJet D a couple of weeks ago and had a nice straight flight. Too nice, as it drifted into a thicket of trees and scrub brush never to be found again.
Please correct me if I'm wrong.
 

Eljay

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If I understand the argument correctly there's so little margin with a C6 that a slight misalignment sucks enough power (because some energy is wasted in a horizontal vector) that it doesn't get enough velocity off the rod and then of course anything can happen. The composite motors have enough excess thrust they can afford a little wasted energy.

And yes, motor variation, temperature, wind, it's just endless, and that's why more margin is better.
 

jahall4

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If I understand the argument correctly there's so little margin with a C6 that a slight misalignment sucks enough power (because some energy is wasted in a horizontal vector) that it doesn't get enough velocity off the rod and then of course anything can happen. The composite motors have enough excess thrust they can afford a little wasted energy.

And yes, motor variation, temperature, wind, it's just endless, and that's why more margin is better.
Yes, no question, remember its less that marginal per Estes own guidelines.
https://www.rocketryforum.com/threads/estes-1-200-scale-rtf-saturn-v.150276/page-7#post-1893187
 

kuririn

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If I understand the argument correctly there's so little margin with a C6 that a slight misalignment sucks enough power (because some energy is wasted in a horizontal vector) that it doesn't get enough velocity off the rod and then of course anything can happen. The composite motors have enough excess thrust they can afford a little wasted energy.

And yes, motor variation, temperature, wind, it's just endless, and that's why more margin is better.
Yes, but in raptor's case he made sure it was fully seated. This tells me it was a power variance in the motor.
 

Scott_650

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Yes, but in raptor's case he made sure it was fully seated. This tells me it was a power variance in the motor.
Yup - not just variances in the motor output but variances in the rocket as well are probable contributing factors to less than optimal flights. These are not precision crafted aerospace vehicles - just injection molded plastic and paper models made for Estes by the lowest cost vendors they could find that meet their standards. Not denigrating either the RTF Saturn or Estes (a peak in my workshop could show you how much I support Estes!) just pointing out that the recommended motor for this rocket can be underpowered and care should be taken when you fly it. I have four flights on mine - two less than great (1 each on a C6-3 and QJet C12-4) and two perfect flights on each of those motors. I’ll probably only fly it a couple of more times then retire it to display status. Unless I buy a second kit and do the 24mm conversion;)
 

Arsenal78

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The issue with this kit isn’t the kit itself, it’s Estes. The kit is too heavy for a proper flight on a C motor and it’s even heavier than the box claims it is. So on top of putting on the box that it’ll fly on a C motor, they also failed to properly weigh it. Best to fly it on an Aerotech D motor
 

jahall4

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The issue with this kit isn’t the kit itself, it’s Estes. The kit is too heavy for a proper flight on a C motor and it’s even heavier than the box claims it is. So on top of putting on the box that it’ll fly on a C motor, they also failed to properly weigh it. Best to fly it on an Aerotech D motor
What's worse is they are putting C6-3 motors in the box with it, as a starter kit. How many have already been sold, but won't be flown until next week (or later) by parents who have never flown a rocket before. A high visibility accident could negatively impact what we all hope as enthusiasts will excite the next generation of rocketers. :(
 

Arsenal78

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What's worse is they are putting C6-3 motors in the box with it, as a starter kit. How many have already been sold, but won't be flown until next week (or later) by parents who have never flown a rocket before. A high visibility accident could negatively impact what we all hope as enthusiasts will excite the next generation of rocketers. :(
Estes is pretty much breaking NAR and TRIPOLI safety rules regarding thrust to weight ratios for safe flights. There’s a reason you don’t stick an underpowered motor in a too heavy kit.
 

DEN

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What is the recommended motor for this besides the C6-3?
 
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BBowmaster

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What is the recommended motor for this besides the C6-3? I live in Canada and dont have access to Q Jet motors yet. Is there a place in Michigan that sells them?
You want to take APCP across the border? More brave than I sir!
 
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thequick

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Looking to pick up a kit to fly this weekend. Has anyone seen these for sale in a retail store, hobby shop, toy store, etc? I want to know the best places to start my search?
 

Docdrew

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Not to sound ignorant here but I don't see what the problem is with using the C6-3s. Went to the park today with my daughter and flew one 3 times in a 5mph wind. It went up almost perfectly straight all 3 times. The first time it came down somewhat quickly because the ejection charge slightly melted the parachute in one area so it stuck together and didn't fully open. I pulled apart the stuck pieces and the chute worked great the second and third times.
 
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Scott_650

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Not to sound ignorant here but I don't see what the problem is with using the C6-3s. Went to the park today with my daughter and flew one 3 times in a 5mph wind. It went up almost perfectly straight all 3 times. The first time it came down somewhat quickly because the ejection charge slightly melted the parachute in one area so it stuck together and didn't fully open. I pulled apart the stuck pieces and the chute worked great the second and third times.
If yours flies well that’s great. Mine doesn’t like much of a breeze - a gust sends it in a very parabolic path with a relatively low ejection incident. In little to no wind it flies straight up. Some folks had problems getting the motor fully seated and the fin unit tight - my fin unit was SLIGHTLY loose (you could move it but it wasn’t all that loose) and had an extremely erratic flight on a QJet C motor. The margin for error on these is very small because they are overweight for an Estes BP C6-3 - get everything right, motor seated correctly, fin unit tight, launch rod clean and straight, low wind speed and they give you just the kind of flight you want - straight and low on a nice white smoke trail, every flight phase in view. Get something just a bit wrong and you can have a much less than optimal flight. Mine will fly a couple more times then probably be retired to display status. I might pick up a second one and install the Flight Sketch 24mm conversion kit. Reportedly it’s a much better flier on Estes 24mm “short” BP motors though mine flies nicely on QJet C12-4s - I just prefer the slower liftoff and white smoke from the Estes BP motors.
 

jahall4

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If yours flies well that’s great. Mine doesn’t like much of a breeze - a gust sends it in a very parabolic path with a relatively low ejection incident. In little to no wind it flies straight up. Some folks had problems getting the motor fully seated and the fin unit tight - my fin unit was SLIGHTLY loose (you could move it but it wasn’t all that loose) and had an extremely erratic flight on a QJet C motor. The margin for error on these is very small because they are overweight for an Estes BP C6-3 - get everything right, motor seated correctly, fin unit tight, launch rod clean and straight, low wind speed and they give you just the kind of flight you want - straight and low on a nice white smoke trail, every flight phase in view. Get something just a bit wrong and you can have a much less than optimal flight. Mine will fly a couple more times then probably be retired to display status. I might pick up a second one and install the Flight Sketch 24mm conversion kit. Reportedly it’s a much better flier on Estes 24mm “short” BP motors though mine flies nicely on QJet C12-4s - I just prefer the slower liftoff and white smoke from the Estes BP motors.
Well put.
 
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