Estes Indicator Two Stage Build

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BABAR

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Estimated weight as single stage 37 gm

Max lift off weight for A10-3T is 85 gm (I figure the same for A10-0T)


An A3-4T sustainer motor adds 8 grams.

Seems like plenty of margin to paper the booster fins, add a booster stuffer tube and upper stage motor mount.

Probably swap sustainer chute for a streamer.

Thoughts?View attachment 453018View attachment 453018View attachment 453018
 

GlenP

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Yes, that is a great idea. I think there was a build thread on that a while back. Might need to adjust the location of the rear fins to get the booster to tumble, depending on where you split from the sustainer. Do you plan to include the transition on the booster side or on the sustainer side? You could split the upper fins so a portion of it stays on the booster. You could switch the booster to an 18mm motor.
 

BABAR

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Yes, that is a great idea. I think there was a build thread on that a while back. Might need to adjust the location of the rear fins to get the booster to tumble, depending on where you split from the sustainer. Do you plan to include the transition on the booster side or on the sustainer side? You could split the upper fins so a portion of it stays on the booster. You could switch the booster to an 18mm motor.
Found it.
Good info. Hmmm, a gliding booster recovery? I built the Tiger Shark (which is essentially the same as the Centuri Black Widow) two stage with intended glider recovery of the booster. Never was able to get much of a glide on it, not even “falling with style.” Plenty of surface area to tumble recovery, however.

On this I had planned to glue the composite two piece forward fins together, as the plans advise, but glue them only to the sustainer. May rethink this, I missed the point about the grain orientation of the rear segment of the sustainer fins likely to break if sustainer lands tail first.

Hmm, options......

Split the forward section fins as @EXPjawa did. Looks like he hasn’t been on forum since August last year, hope he’s okay!


1. Keep forward section on the sustainer, rear section on the booster.
Pluses:

A. Sustainer is gonna recover on a streamer, if standard forward end deployment will most likely land tail first. Without this rear sections, should land on motor casing, so broken sustainer fins less likely with this configuration. The forward sections I think are more than adequate for stability, although given I don’t want to put a launch lug on this section likely will never fly it single stage. Taking off the rear section also means less drag and weight on sustainer, although given I have a small to medium size field (think middle of 6 soccer fields plus a medium central parking lot) I am really NOT interested in improved performance/altitude.

B. Without the rear section of the FORWARD fins attached to the booster on the adapter section, it MIGHT be stable after separation and come in forward end ballistic, rather than tumble. This is poor form. WITH the forward fins attached, I am pretty sure it won’t be stable for forward ballistic recovery, and I doubt it will be stable to fall ballistically tail end first. Doubt it’s gonna glide backward, , although may want to get Eric @Rktman to look at this, would be cool if it could do that

2. Build and keep the forward fins as one piece attached only to Sustainer.

Pluses
A. Easier to do, and I don’t need to worry about which sustainer fins lines up with which booster fin for every launch. Although if I did split the fins, I’d probably put number decals on them or paint one a different color or something.

B. I could do an external shock cord attachment (removable for display) at or posterior to the sustainer rocket BODY CG (with spent motor casing, without nose and chute), sort of like NAR duration competition models, so body falls horizontally or nose first, so I don’t bang those rear fins as hard on the ground.


Darn, that glider booster idea really appeals to me, although I doubt it is do able. Maybe on a different model.
 

BABAR

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@Rktman
@georgegassaway
5ACA4FE0-F36D-4099-B4A2-8B70FB0AF995.jpeg


What do you think? Can it glide?

(Might go without the motor hook, not a good forward end for a glider)

From

 
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Rktman

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@Rktman
@georgegassaway View attachment 453574

What do you think? Can it glide?

(Might go without the motor hook, not a good forward end for a glider)

From

My guess is that you wouldn't get much of a glide out of it. The fins don't have quite the surface area or extend as much laterally as the Tiger Shark or Black Widow's did to provide lift.

Try some trimming tosses to see what kind of glide you can achieve by added small amounts of weight to the forward or aft end of your booster. Worth a try. I for one would be happy to be proven wrong by having it transition into a nice flat decent glide.
 

BABAR

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My guess is that you wouldn't get much of a glide out of it. The fins don't have quite the surface area or extend as much laterally as the Tiger Shark or Black Widow's did to provide lift.

Try some trimming tosses to see what kind of glide you can achieve by added small amounts of weight to the forward or aft end of your booster. Worth a try. I for one would be happy to be proven wrong by having it transition into a nice flat decent glide.
Thanks!
Not looking to set any duration records, just haven’t yet seen a two stage that had a decent (translated as safe and I damaged) glide recovered booster.
 

neil_w

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Not looking to set any duration records, just haven’t yet seen a two stage that had a decent (translated as safe and I damaged) glide recovered booster.
As I have recounted before, I was at a launch were the simple 3-finned booster of an Estes Extreme 12 got into an extremely stable glide and went whizzing past my head. To this day I wonder if I was the only one who witnessed it; I probably wouldn't have if it didn't come so close to me.

It wasn't going to set any glider duration records but it was definitely gliding.
 

BABAR

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As I have recounted before, I was at a launch were the simple 3-finned booster of an Estes Extreme 12 got into an extremely stable glide and went whizzing past my head. To this day I wonder if I was the only one who witnessed it; I probably wouldn't have if it didn't come so close to me.

It wasn't going to set any glider duration records but it was definitely gliding.
Cool!

I am sure it can be done occasionally, just not sure about any designs that do it consistently/reliably.
 

Rktman

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As I have recounted before, I was at a launch were the simple 3-finned booster of an Estes Extreme 12 got into an extremely stable glide and went whizzing past my head. To this day I wonder if I was the only one who witnessed it; I probably wouldn't have if it didn't come so close to me.

It wasn't going to set any glider duration records but it was definitely gliding.
Sure has a generous amount of lateral fin area, not surprised it glided if it was (perhaps unintentionally?) balanced just right. @BABAR would you consider extending your booster fins outward so they were more wing-like? Might greatly improve the odds for an acceptable glide vs plummet.
 

GlenP

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Gliding is all about balance and trim, the Black Widow had some instructions on how to balance the booster. Also it had one larger dorsal fin, the larger drag surface helps keep that one on top. You just want it coming down in a certain horizontal orientation rather than ballistic.

Even making it unstable so it will tumble will require maybe adding some weight to get the cg and cp relationship of the booster loaded with a spent engine the way you want it.
 

BABAR

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One of the challenges on this is where to make the split and coming up with a secure sustainer booster -Junction on Boost which will still release easily.

Reviewed prior attempts at this.

I think I'm going to keep the adapter and use it as the link up.

I'm going to file down the strakes / lines at the edges of the adapter to give me some room to put on some high temperature paint.

Internal margin will be lined with aluminum can.

On my past attempted A10-0. Boosters I have ended up with these sustainers frying or Charring
16157502210315873491368062192242.jpg
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the forward end of the booster. We will see how this works. It certainly does give a very secure link up between the booster and the sustainer which I think however will release easily as well.
 

BABAR

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Sustainer motor mount
3/4" masking tape, cut with knife into 1/4" strips while on the roll. Custom centering rings.

Mount a little longer than usual, but less tube to pressurize.

The length posterior to the rear length is extended, as we need length for the adapter forward section to act as a coupler.

The mylar tape on the end will hopefully give me room for an external tape wrap. I don't like motor hooks much, especially for sustainers. Friction fit usually works, but friction fit with an external wrap is a solid combo. The mylar protects the tube from delamination when the external tape wrap is removed.

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GlenP

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A thin coating of glue, white, wood, epoxy, take your pick, on the plastic and under the Al liner will help a little. Still, those will burn after a time, so maybe consider making that sustainer coupler a replaceable part or with a sacrificial replaceable liner? Just an idea from the cluster staged Seattle Rocket Works MIRV Gryphon, it used paper liners in the vented interstage tubes.
 

BABAR

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A thin coating of glue, white, wood, epoxy, take your pick, on the plastic and under the Al liner will help a little. Still, those will burn after a time, so maybe consider making that sustainer coupler a replaceable part or with a sacrificial replaceable liner? Just an idea from the cluster staged Seattle Rocket Works MIRV Gryphon, it used paper liners in the vented interstage tubes.
Good idea. I will need a good coating of glue to attach the liner to the inside of the forward adapter tube anyway. Clearance is going to be tight, there isn't much space between a BT-20 and a BT-50 anyway, 18.0 inside BT-20 and 13.8 BT-5 PER


So split that in 1/2 you get 3.1 mm clearance on each side

1615756638638589554106177366636.jpg


Motor block cut from BT-5 (My standard for motor blocks for BT-5,20, and 50 has been to just cut a piece of the SAME size tube, snip out a segment so it lays flat, and glue and slide it in with marked casing)

@neil_w has correctly noted motor blocks are cheap, these are cheaper, lighter, and in my experience they don't fail. YMMV

LEFT side of pic is shock cord mount. Will slip through a gap in forward centering tape ring when glue dries. It's kevlar, but I also like the extended motor tube as it will be even further forward of the motor ejection charge. Even kevlar is not 100% flame resistant. I don't like Tea Bag mounts. Since this is streamer recovery anyway, I don't need much space for recovery gear.
1615756638638589554106177366636.jpg
 

shockie

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Estimated weight as single stage 37 gm

Max lift off weight for A10-3T is 85 gm (I figure the same for A10-0T)


An A3-4T sustainer motor adds 8 grams.

Seems like plenty of margin to paper the booster fins, add a booster stuffer tube and upper stage motor mount.

Probably swap sustainer chute for a streamer.

Thoughts?View attachment 453018View attachment 453018View attachment 453018
Yes that sure work ok.... maybe


Only heaven knows what the actual figures are.
 

BABAR

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Papered fins. Since the booster will be tumble recovery (possibly glide but likely at best Buzz Lightyear 's "Falling With Style") I figure glued paper gives me best strength and Cosmesis (here's looking at you, @jqavins ! ;) )
16157579025195279581309654064229.jpg
 

BABAR

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Infamous "cheaters", 1/16" balsa strips on the booster marker lines, to assist alignment and strength of attachment of the larger rear booster fins.
 

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shockie

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BABAR: I look forward to some launch pics or even video.....cool build converting a single stage to multi-stage....I've been seriously considering doing the same thing with a Nike-X..... especially with mini-motors.....the only multi-stage mini-engine model I've owned and flew was the old 2 stage Estes Beta TK-45 back in the early 70's....
 

BABAR

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Dividing my work among other projects but figured get back to this. I've never understood why anybody would ever put a launch lug anywhere but in the fin body joint so I am deviating from the instructions here.
 

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BABAR

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The transition segment forward shoulder and the inside are painted with high temperature resistant paint.

Inside forward shoulder has layer of aluminum can.

The sustainer 13mm motor mount barely fits, but it's enough.
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BABAR

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"Cheaters" for the transition fin segments. I separated these from the sustainer fins, I think that makes the remaining sustainer fins less susceptible to damage, and more surface area for the tumbling booster
16173175786641524725913497623041.jpg
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BABAR

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Cut some notches in the centering rings as this will ventilate out the rear end of the booster
16173215337449010882165752180351.jpg
 

BABAR

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Gap staging is a little tricky as it is internal.

Diagram

End of sustainer, motor mount extends out, motor sticks out.

Series of measurements

Hope its right
16174153299818107165957498893219.jpg


Spacer that will tell me how far in the BOOSTER mount will go
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BABAR

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Last pics out of order, the first pic should be the last
 

BABAR

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One layer aluminum inside, one out.

Tape on outside will come off after glue dries. Oh shoot, I just realized I have aluminum tape. I will take the red electric tape off and replace it with aluminum.
16174172262494036521752942339345.jpg
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BABAR

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16174215686673242337686451090404.jpg


Full stack with 1/2 A3-2T in sustainer and A10-0T in booster comes in 59 grams (no paint or primer.)

Easily in the weight range for 13mm A10-0. I am feeling good for two reasons. Originally I thought I'd need to go 18mm.

1. Lighter tail helps to keep stack more stable.

2. I am thinking tumble recovery is more viable.
16174215686673242337686451090404.jpg
 

rklapp

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I made my own vents. I think this was from a hard landing on the sidewalk.

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sl98

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Here are a couple of pics of my 2 stage Indicator. I went 18mm for both booster and sustainer. Motors are friction fit. I used centering rings on both sided of the transition to hold the sustainer motor tube in place. The portion of motor that extends from the sustainer slides inside the booster motor tube. I had to add a healthy amount of nose weight.


Indicator Sustainer.jpgIndicator Booster.jpg
 
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