Estes motors, new packaging

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.
Thanks for sharing, interesting, think it looks good , probably cheaper to package than the cardboard back and blister plastic front.
Will make it here to me in UK by 2025 at the speed Estes stuff gets here 😩
That’s interesting. Certainly they won’t have the plastic coming loose from the cardboard and dropping bits/motors out, or the hanging hole tearing out of the cardboard nearly as often as they have been.

It will be interesting to see if this packaging finds its way into general distribution, or if it will soon be a collector’s item like the two-motor 18mm packs from a few years back….

I’d be curious to see how the starters are protected from getting messed up by handling in that bag package.

Is the Hobby Lobby price tag pre-printed on the bag, or a sticker?
I miss the good old days when they came it a cardboard tube with an instruction sheet with a piece of nichrome wire. Pretty sure that Estes actually made a nose cone to fit the tube... out of balsa, of course.
Didn't Estes switch over their 29mm motors to bags sometime in the past year as well? At least that's when I started getting them, though my primary distributor could have only just recently gotten through an older stockpile so the bags could have been in use a while. I don't see any pictures online though. Different design: A softer, one-time-use bag, with a face card inserted, akin to how the 29mm retainers have been for a while:


On the other hand, wasn't A10 packaging also switched sometime the past year or so, but to a different blister design? Or is that also just my distributor finally stocking the style? It is regrettably wider than the traditional blue.


Either way, three thoughts about this new packaging @dmaaero's posted:

1. Forward-thinking companies are trying to move away from plastic packaging. See, e.g., LEGO's apparently very expensive and protracted migration to using paper bags and cartons for what used to be plastic bags (within sets and small polybag sets). Plastic trash is EVERYWHERE. There's news seemingly everyday about the glut of micro-plastics in everything. So Estes decides now is the time to double down on plastic?

2. The 29mm bags work ok because the motors are big enough and the bag tight enough they're still a solid brick, still uniform, and still minimal wasted space. They're actually more efficient than the 29mm blisters. For the smaller motors, other than weak glue, the blue blisters are good designs from a modern business perspective because they store & ship easily. They stack & rack well, they have relatively little wasted space (though there could be even less!), and they're uniform to handle. But I'm somewhat concerned about these new bags for shipping or stacking purposes. They seem designed to traditional (dying) retail shelving objectives and don't look minimal or uniform or solid. But a lot depends on how stiff and tight the bag is, how much the motors can move around inside it, etc., so I'll reserve judgement until I get some in-hand.

3. Change is bad! 😭😭😭

Long story short, I would be way more excited about minimalist paper cartons.

With the motor CATO issues that Estes already has, one theory is that they are getting handled rough and cracking the propellant inside. I'm not sure that is the problem, but if it is, would the baggie package offer less protection from impacts, or does it have plenty of air trapped inside like potato chips? Doesn't look like it to me. Time will tell I suppose.
The ignitors are folded inside the instructions, there also inside a tiny plastic sealed bag. I don"t think the outer bag will offer any drop protection. The price is printed on the package.
Last edited:
I'm sure Estes would sell bulk packs, sealed in wax paper, in a paper padded shipping box.

If enough of us asked nicely, and promised to buy direct from them.

Less plastic pollution. Plastic is nessasary when sitting on a hobby shops shelf. But direct shipping?............
Certainly they won’t have the plastic coming loose from the cardboard and dropping bits/motors out
That's the biggest source of my enthusiasm for the new packaging. I've had a great many of those blister packs come apart in storage.
But it’s not like I’ve ever been a particular fan of the old blister-packs, either. They manage to use plastic *and* be impossible to re-close (without tape).
That too.

Like others, I would welcome a reclosable, all-cardboard box. Worked for Centuri. Works for Crayola.