Estes Quasar

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

This site may earn a commission from merchant affiliate links, including eBay, Amazon, and others.


Well-Known Member
Jan 18, 2009
Reaction score
I know there are some Estes Quasar fans here on TRF. :D

The Estes Quasar kit started out as one of the 'Citation' series of models Estes released in the early 1970s in an effort to get their product into mass-market chains (It wouldn't be until 25 years later that it would be successful with Wal-Mart).

At least three versions of the Quasar were released. The original, Citation series version with chrome plated fin unit (Alpha III unit with clipped/squared off fins) and nose cone sold in a full color box.

Later there were two bagged versions sold with unclipped fins with either grey or white plastic parts.

As I built and flew the Citation version of the Quasar back in the 1970s (and I still have it ) I thought I would clone the white plastic version.

Using a current Estes Alpha III kit, a correct length body tube (BT-50H) from Semroc and a chrome & white body wrap-around decal from Excelsior rocketry, I was able to create a Quasar.

I primed and painted the fin unit and nose cone with NEW Krylon Primer and Gloss White as a test. It worked out well in this case.

A fairly quick build that looks good.

Estes Quasar (White).jpg
Oooh that's mean. At least you didn't build the one from the NARAM auction. :D


Nope, the one I bought at the NARAM-50 auction is sitting about five feet from me, still in the shrinkwrap box. ;)

As I look at this Quasar box, I see a red sticker placed over the picture of the 'included' rocket motors. This model must have been shipped to California originally as I recall none of the Citation models sold here had rocket motors in the box as model rocketry was regulated as 'fireworks' at the time.
I swear I had a quasar with unclipped silver fins and nose. Unfortunately I gave it away years ago. Was this another version of it?
Here's my original Quasars the clip with chrome nose cone and fins, The later version that came along.

Here's my original Quasars the clip with chrome nose cone and fins, The later version that came along.


Very nice. :)

I'll have to dig out my Citation Quasar I built in 72/73/74 and pose it for a picture with the clone I recently built.
So to clone a Chrome Citation Quasar you could just obtain an Alpha III fin unit and clip, what, a quarter of an inch, off the lower tips of the fins? Looks doable. Then apply chrome Monocote to the fin unit and the upper end of the BT, apply decals from Excelsior and then find a way to somehow chrome plate the nose cone... OK, that last part might be kind of hard.

Chrome paint won't work because it doesn't look like chrome for very long. (But it only has to last until it gets its picture taken, right? ;) )

The white Quasar clone looks sweet. I'm really liking this series of clones that you are building, Bob.

My first rocket was the Alpha III received in a starter kit for Christmas, 1972. However, there was apparently some mistake in my kit because the fin unit was whitish with clipped fins, as in the Quasar, and the nose was white as well. I simply brush painted them red though one of my friends noticed that his Alpha III came precolored and had pointed fins. I wonder if anyone heard of a similar mix up at the time?