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Estes Super Neon XL and 29mm Upscale

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DMehalko

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Hey guys, new here on Rocketry Forum after wanting to build rockets again. Last time I messed with this stuff was over 10 years ago. One of Estes's newest release spiked my interest again, I love tube fin designs and the colors attracted me to it!

So I was looking to bring back som childhood memories but with more fire power, and have never done anything bigger than D's, so I also ordered parts to build a upscaled version of the Neon XL.

Here is the 24mm stock neon xl i just finished. The purple I used was a little darker and does not match the graphics, but on the big one im going to have StickerShock23 match some up for me:)

Rocketry 004.jpg


Rocketry 005.jpg


Rocketry 006.jpg
 

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DM1975

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Very nice. Even if the paint doesnt exactly match it still looks great.
 

Initiator001

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Hey guys, new here on Rocketry Forum after wanting to build rockets again. Last time I messed with this stuff was over 10 years ago. One of Estes's newest release spiked my interest again, I love tube fin designs and the colors attracted me to it!

So I was looking to bring back som childhood memories but with more fire power, and have never done anything bigger than D's, so I also ordered parts to build a upscaled version of the Neon XL.

Here is the 24mm stock neon xl i just finished. The purple I used was a little darker and does not match the graphics, but on the big one im going to have StickerShock23 match some up for me:)
Looks good. :)

What brand and color of 'green' paint did you use for the model?
 

DMehalko

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Looks good. :)

What brand and color of 'green' paint did you use for the model?
I believe it is from Model-Master paints, Sublime Green, still needs to be clear coated.


Anyways, just got all my parts for my upscale Neon XXL. It is going to be a 1.6x upscale, which is 2.6" Diameter and 55" long, but im going to stretch it to 60". All LOC components from Apogee Components (great service!).
 

dragon_rider10

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I love the smaller SuperNeon, always a great performer. I'm anxious to see your upscale!
 

DMehalko

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Thanks Dragonrider and Mopar!

Anyways, got my parts today like I said, and just finished cutting the peices for my scratch build kit, already epoxied a couple of centering rings and the aeropack 29mm retainer(very nice!!)

Rocketry 009.jpg
 

TheAviator

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Just out of curiosity, were you thinking about putting dual deployment in your upscale? IMHO, your upscale would be a perfect L1 rocket, and a good practice ship for dual deploy. The drag keeps it relatively slow, but put the right motor in it (an AT H97 would be AWESOME) and it will still go pretty high.

And even if you don't want to do it now, you could still put the altimeter bay in and just leave it bolted together.
 

DMehalko

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Aviator, I was just thinking about recovery on this one, with my only experience with estes rockets, I was thinking about how to split the airframe, on all the estes kits the airframe is one peice and just the nose cone pops off. If I were to do this on this guy I would think there would be too much volume and not enough pressure to pop the nose off.

Another thing, how long should i make the motor mount? I figure if i make it long I could more safely use motor ejection.

Work with me here this is my first step out of D engines:cool:

Got working on it:cool:

Rocketry.jpg
 

MarkH

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Aviator, I was just thinking about recovery on this one, with my only experience with estes rockets, I was thinking about how to split the airframe, on all the estes kits the airframe is one peice and just the nose cone pops off. If I were to do this on this guy I would think there would be too much volume and not enough pressure to pop the nose off.

Another thing, how long should i make the motor mount? I figure if i make it long I could more safely use motor ejection.

Work with me here this is my first step out of D engines:cool:

Got working on it:cool:
I would seperate it at a little more than half way from the bottom. At least that's what I did on my upscale Groove Tube (see avatar). It is pretty much the same dimensions (2.6 inch dia.) as the super Neon Upscale you're working on. Mine is 55" long and I broke it at 30" from the bottom. I used an Aerotech bulkhead assembly because the coupler that comes with it is really thick. Also, I've launched it on the 29/40-120 case about six times and haven't had any ejection problems. For the motor mount I wouldn't make it excessively long unless you choose not to break the airframe in the middle and are trying to reduce the volume of the tube. I think I made mine about 8" long.
 

TheAviator

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Aviator, I was just thinking about recovery on this one, with my only experience with estes rockets, I was thinking about how to split the airframe, on all the estes kits the airframe is one peice and just the nose cone pops off. If I were to do this on this guy I would think there would be too much volume and not enough pressure to pop the nose off.

Another thing, how long should i make the motor mount? I figure if i make it long I could more safely use motor ejection.

Work with me here this is my first step out of D engines:cool:

Got working on it:cool:
Really, with MPR and even L1 HPR, there is not really much difference in the construction techniques or flying. Sure you can get into fiberglassing and epoxy, but paper and wood glue work just fine even up through L2 if you're careful. The only switch you make is from balsa to aircraft ply. The size of the motor ejection charge increases with the size of the motor, so you are fine on that front too.

As to the ejection charge, you're fine. The two pictures I've attached are my first large MPR rocket build, a 3", (which is seen here on my L1 Certification flight) and a 4" rocket (the silver one, not the red and white one) that both used exclusively motor ejection on the 29/40-120 case. (The 4" was made with extremely light tubing and balsa, believe it or not. The owner said it had flown literally dozens of times.

I would make the MMT long enough to handle whatever the largest motor you think you want to eventually put in it is, but short enough so that you can still fit the parachute and shock line comfortably. The 29/40-120 case is about 6.5" long. The 29/180, 29/240, and 29/360 cases are 7.25", 9", and 12" long respectively. For the longer motors, it's not necessary that your motor mount be long enough to hold the entire motor, but it is good for making sure the ejection charge doesn't fry anything.

As to the electronics bay, search around the forum. I don't have any pictures of one, but to basically describe, it's a coupler tube with removable bulkheads so that you can mount the electronics inside them. The bulkheads are usually held on by two pieces of all-thread or two long bolts, and the electronics "sled" is mounted inside the coupler to this using launch lugs or something similar. On each end, there's a charge holder for the ejection charge. Then there's an eye hook on both ends for shock cords and you use screws to mount the coupler into the upper airframe.

The great thing about the bays is that you don't need to use them. Just leave out the other ejection charges and altimeter and use motor ejection if you want to.

Guardian 1.jpg


IMG_0795.jpg
 
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DMehalko

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Ok I think I got it then, so in dual deploy it looks like everyone puts the drouge chute in the lower half and the main in the upper half, but in my case, for starting off at least, I would bolt the Av-bay to the upper airframe to avoid seperation and pack the main chute in the lower half?

My airframe is 34" lower (standard LOC size) and 17" upper tube, 26" if you count the nose cone.

Another concern, it feels heavy, probably because im just not used to larger rockets, but I plan on flying it on G64's that ive never used and am unsure on the power. I figure if they use g64's on their 4" G-force they should fly my 2.6" neon no problem. But like I said it feels heavy, and it still needs paint and recovery.

Got the reast of the tubes glued in, was using a nice small line of 5min epoxy for each, definintly not overdone. Test fit the motor mount (cut to 15"), and did a quick mock-up

Rocketry 010.jpg


Rocketry 013.jpg
 

TheAviator

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Ok I think I got it then, so in dual deploy it looks like everyone puts the drouge chute in the lower half and the main in the upper half, but in my case, for starting off at least, I would bolt the Av-bay to the upper airframe to avoid seperation and pack the main chute in the lower half?
Exactly. Usually the Av-Bay is bolted into the upper airframe anyways, and the nosecone is what comes off. You would want to make sure the nose cone is tightly friction fitted though.

My airframe is 34" lower (standard LOC size) and 17" upper tube, 26" if you count the nose cone.

Another concern, it feels heavy, probably because im just not used to larger rockets, but I plan on flying it on G64's that ive never used and am unsure on the power. I figure if they use g64's on their 4" G-force they should fly my 2.6" neon no problem. But like I said it feels heavy, and it still needs paint and recovery.

Got the reast of the tubes glued in, was using a nice small line of 5min epoxy for each, definintly not overdone. Test fit the motor mount (cut to 15"), and did a quick mock-up
Yes, it is heavy. Not so heavy, however that it will not fly on a G64. The Guardian upscale that I posted above weighed 2 pounds fully loaded. It was also WAY overbuilt. (I did shred it on a CTI 38mm I, but that was more bad gluing technique than overall build style.)

IMHO, building a rocket of this size and performance (big draggy tube fins) out of LOC parts is overkill, but by no means is it too much overkill for a G64. The big difference is the LOC-built rocket will take everything short of being stepped on. A Estes-style rocket would, however, fly higher on the same motor, and you could probably fly it on all of the 29mm F's.

In reality, overbuilding a rocket that you may get your L1 on is not really a bad thing. Personally, I prefer to tend on the side of too light, but that may come from my passion for NAR competition.
 

stickershock23

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If it weighs under the 3.3 lbs, it will fly on most "G" motors. low and slow. but it will fly nice!

Just stay away from the longer burning "G's" like G-40 or G-38 to slow LOL
 

DMehalko

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If it weighs under the 3.3 lbs, it will fly on most "G" motors. low and slow. but it will fly nice!

Just stay away from the longer burning "G's" like G-40 or G-38 to slow LOL
3.3lbs unloaded or loaded? It feels like it weighs 2lbs right now, it still needs fins, shock cord, chute, and paint.

Also what parachute should I order for it? And how should I attach the shock cord? I was going to do a Baffle set-up making shock cord mounting easy, but that ditches the av-bay which is what I think Im going to do now.
 

TheAviator

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3.3lbs loaded with the 29/40-120 motor. This is the limit if you want to fly it under model rocket regulations. I sincerely doubt that the fins, laundry, and paint are going to add another pound of weight.

Loaded with an HPR motor, it is allowed to be over 3.3 lbs.
 

stickershock23

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Yep what aviator said. 3.3 lbs ready to fly.

That like he said, is the cut off for a model rocket. but it also is a good number. a typical "G" will lift that much (of course there are exceptions to that) but for the most part that is a good guideline.

If you are going duel deploy, DONT baffle it. leave it open. (more motor choices for the future) remember your lower body tube is the DROGUE. and for something that small. it wont need much. I would actually recommend a large streamer! that and a few sheets of estes wadding or dog barf, and you are fine. save your room for the Main chute! if your drogue is too small, it's no biggie, if your main is, you have a problem.
 

G2Rockets

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I think your Super xl look awesome. My wife built the standard Super neon and fell in love with it. So I bought her the super XL. She hasn't started it yet and she is already planning a Super Neon Triple XL using 3 inch airframe. I think I will support her on it. I really like the neon series.

Great job on yours and keep us posted with pics.

John
 

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3.3lbs unloaded or loaded? It feels like it weighs 2lbs right now, it still needs fins, shock cord, chute, and paint.

Also what parachute should I order for it? And how should I attach the shock cord? I was going to do a Baffle set-up making shock cord mounting easy, but that ditches the av-bay which is what I think Im going to do now.

I would have said attach the shock cord to the motor mount in a rocket this size, but since the mount is already glued in it is too late for that. You could put in an extra centering ring far enough down from the break point. Put an eye bolt through the centering ring, and attach about 1/4" thick kevlar cord or nylon strap to the eyebolt. I like to press a # 10 T -nut to the centering ring and thread a #10 machined thread eyebolt through the T-nut.

For a parachute on a 2lb rocket a 36 " nylon chute should be sufficient. K&S comes to mind although I've never purchased from Scott he does hang out on this board.
 
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DMehalko

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G2rocket, thats what I want to do if i get certified, I would like to build a 3" version with a 54mm motor mount, im doing this one up at a learning curve into mid/high power rockets, but yes, these tube fin rockets are sweet.


I would have said attach the shock cord to the motor mount in a rocket this size, but since the mount is already glued in it is too late for that. You could put in an extra centering ring far enough down from the break point. Put an eye bolt through the centering ring, and attach about 1/4" thick kevlar cord or nylon strap to the eyebolt. I like to press a # 10 T -nut to the centering ring and thread a #10 machined thread eyebolt through the T-nut.

For a parachute on a 2lb rocket a 36 " nylon chute should be sufficient. K&S comes to mind although I've never purchased from Scott he does hang out on this board.

Motor mount is not glued in!! So should I do it differently than you said? What shock cord should I buy, and how long to make it?

Thank you so much for the help so far everyone!

David
 

DM1975

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I would put a Kevlar shock cord (or at least anchor it with Kevlar) attached to the motor mount and make it at least 2.5 to 3 times as long as the rocket for a single deployment, but for dual deployment, it would be a different story as you will need a shock cord for the drogue, which does not have to be as long as the main one, and then a separate one for the main chute. I would go all Kevlar on those.

Also, you can go to Youtube and watch some videos of dual deploy rockets and it will give you a good idea of the length you should use.
 

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Motor mount is not glued in!! So should I do it differently than you said? What shock cord should I buy, and how long to make it?

Thank you so much for the help so far everyone!

David
Buckaroo's Sooper Neon thread shows how to hook the kevlar to the motor mount. Commonwealth.net sells it, so does Apogee, to name a couple. If it is long enough (like 20ft) you don't need an elastic cord like you use in Estes type kits. The kevlar doesn't give but by using a really long cord there is time for two halves of your rocket to slow down without damage when the chute is ejected.
 
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DMehalko

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Thanks Mark, so i will be ordering my shock cord and parachute and av-bay here this week.

Also I just got my Aerotech 29/40-120 case, also want to order a rouse-tech 29/240 case also for a possible level 1 flight. Im really nervous about it not flying on a g64, almost contemplating putting a 38mm motor mount in it, but I would like to fly it at local fields.
 

DMehalko

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Got the fins cut out from 1/8" Basswood, picked out a nice and dense peice.
What is a good way to make sure te fins are perfectly centered on the tubes?

Also, whats a good upscale without a downscale?:p

Rocketry 015.jpg


Rocketry 018.jpg


Rocketry 017.jpg
 

TheAviator

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Got the fins cut out from 1/8" Basswood, picked out a nice and dense peice.
What is a good way to make sure te fins are perfectly centered on the tubes?

Also, whats a good upscale without a downscale?:p
See Buckaroo's thread for a good technique.

http://www.rocketryforum.com/showpost.php?p=77437&postcount=43

Another way to do it would be to lay the tube fins down on the table and figure out what the distance from the table to the fins was supposed to be.

If I remember my geometry and trig correctly, it should be (.5 + SQRT(3))*D, where D is the outside of the tubes.
 

DMehalko

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See Buckaroo's thread for a good technique.

http://www.rocketryforum.com/showpost.php?p=77437&postcount=43

Another way to do it would be to lay the tube fins down on the table and figure out what the distance from the table to the fins was supposed to be.

If I remember my geometry and trig correctly, it should be (.5 + SQRT(3))*D, where D is the outside of the tubes.

I went with buckaroo's method and it worked great! Fins all glued on, used wood glue for the tack, going to go back with microballons and epoxy for thick fillets

Rocketry 020.jpg
 

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Looking Good!.... of course I am partial to the design :D
 

DMehalko

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Thanks! All I got done today was all the epoxy fillets.

Also the picture is pretty bad but sand paper glued up to some foam rubber works great for sanding fillets and other curvatured surfaces

Rocketry 021.jpg


Rocketry 022.jpg
 

DM1975

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Thanks! All I got done today was all the epoxy fillets.

Also the picture is pretty bad but sand paper glued up to some foam rubber works great for sanding fillets and other curvatured surfaces
A sanding sponge is your friend ;)
 
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