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Fliskits Morning Star

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JAL3

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I got down my next project and took a good look at it. Its a Fliskits Morning Star. As I looked at the package, I realized that I have kit #12. I wonder how much value I lost when I opened the package? What matters to me though is what I gained when I opened it.

I just got through skimming the instructions when I got paged to the hospital.

Such is life. More later.

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MKP

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I recently built this one, real nice build, haven't had a chance to fly it yet.
 

jflis

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Looking forward to this build thread. I really love this new version of the Morning Star (the design has lived the last 15 or so years as a much smaller 18mm design and only became 24mm with the production kit :) )

Any feedback will be very much appreciated.
 

JAL3

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I'll provide the feedback as soon as I can get back to working on it.
 

JAL3

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Construction began by my locating a spent 24mm casing and marking off 1/4" from one end. A ring of white glue was then applied inside the BT50 motor tube using a swab held against the marked casing as a refference distance. A thrust ring was then inserted and pushed into place using the spent casing which was then immediately removed.

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JAL3

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As the glue on the thrust ring dried, I cut out the wrap around fin marking guide. Often times, these are printed on very light stock that does not hold up well, especially when being used to cut out fins. More rarely, it is very heavy cardstock which is great for the fins but which makes the wrap arounds more difficult to deal with. In this case, it was just right.

The wrap was taped into place and I used my handy dandy Fliskits mechanical pencil to transfer the five fin lines to the BT. The wrap was then removed and the lines were extended the length of the tube with and Estes angle.

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JAL3

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Next up was the forming of the transition. It is made from the same paper as the fin guide. This normally makes be a bit leery since my origami skills are nill. I was somewhate reassured that Fliskits provided and extra. As it turns out, the extra was not needed. I cut out the first one, dragged it over the edge of the desk to give it some curl and then glued the tab with just a hint of white glue. I then let it set up for a bit.

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JAL3

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With the transition glue dry, I slid the transition onto the lower BT starting with, and making sure of, which end had the thrust ring. The instructions indicated that it is much easier to slide into place when the large diameter is slipped on first. The tightness of the fit was such that I know the instructions are right. I also took it as an indication that I had done a decent job of rolling the transition.

The transition was moved to the opposite end of the tube and then 3/8" was marked off along one of the fin lines. I then put the fin marking guide back in place and used it to draw a ring around the tube at the 3/8" mark. This would form the aft end of the fins.

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JAL3

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At this point, I want to solicit some advice.

The mounting of the fins comes next. Normally, I would apply the filler and do the sanding and then apply them. Each fin will be done in 2 pieces that will need to be glued together. When I have made compound fins like this before, the pieces have been glued together prior to installation. In this case, they are install in a piecemeal fashion.

I have thought about gluing them together and then applying some labeling to take the place of the sealer and cover the seam line. I am also thinking about prepainting the BT and fins since I think the masking may get nasty.

Another thing to consider is that the fit between the forward ends of the fins and the paper transition is critical.

Any advice?
 

jflis

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John,

Assembling the fins to get a good finish at the joint between the fin and the strake would work fine. Just be sure to keep a straight edge along the root of the combined fin to be sure that everything is properly aligned.

If you have a clean ring marked around the bottom of the tube (that 3/8" line around the tube) you should be all set with regard to fin position and the shroud.

The critical point with regard to these fins is that they each be exactly the same distance from the end of the tube as possible. If you look ahead in the assembly you will see that the shroud will settle down into the tops of the strakes. If the fins are not all at the same position you will see gaps between the shroud and the strake.

NOTE: For the most part, minor gaps can easily be filled. Larger gaps tend to take away from the appearance. Also, gaps will not affect the performance of the model, just the appearance.

Keep us posted! Great build so far :)
jim
 

JAL3

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John,

Assembling the fins to get a good finish at the joint between the fin and the strake would work fine. Just be sure to keep a straight edge along the root of the combined fin to be sure that everything is properly aligned.

If you have a clean ring marked around the bottom of the tube (that 3/8" line around the tube) you should be all set with regard to fin position and the shroud.

The critical point with regard to these fins is that they each be exactly the same distance from the end of the tube as possible. If you look ahead in the assembly you will see that the shroud will settle down into the tops of the strakes. If the fins are not all at the same position you will see gaps between the shroud and the strake.

NOTE: For the most part, minor gaps can easily be filled. Larger gaps tend to take away from the appearance. Also, gaps will not affect the performance of the model, just the appearance.

Keep us posted! Great build so far :)
jim
Thanks. The advice is much appreciated.
 

JAL3

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After more than a month in hiatus, I finally got a chance to spend some quality time with the Morning Star today. I'm bushed so the build will have to wait until tomorrow.
 

JAL3

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After putting on the transition, life got busy and it was more than a month before I had a chance to work on this rocket again. I made the mistake of just jumping right in without a re-familiarization course.

According to the instructions, the fins are mounted first and then the strakes are mounted to the fins. I remembered hearing from Jim Flis that it should be alright to glue the parts together first and proceeded to do that. I set a fin down on some wax paper and then used CA to affix the strake to the fin, using a steel ruler to keep the edges aligned. This part went well.

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JAL3

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I decided that I wanted to seal the fins before putting them in place and wanted to do it easily. I decided to try a method I had only tired once before and used peel and stick labels to do the sealing. I peeled the backing off of an Avery sheet of 8.5x11 labeling and pressed the fins down flat. I then used a razor blade to trim away the excess. When done, I flipped the fins over and applied the labeling to the opposite site and trimmed them out. Some thin CA was then used to seal all the edges. I don't really expect any trouble from this step either.

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JAL3

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The next part is where the brain was not fully engaged. I always do my airfoiling before putting the fins in place. I realized that the outer edge of the strake would look good flat since it would be coming up off the transition so I did not round it. Instead, I just rounded the leading and trailing edges of the fins with sandpaper. The I rounded the outer edges and realized my mistake. Later on, some toothpicks are going to be glued to the outer edges and I am really going to miss having them flat.

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JAL3

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One of the most critical stages in the building of this rocket is the placement of the fins. They all have to line up along the same line so the the transition will fit properly. I had carefully marked the ring of aft alignment and prepared to install the first fin using yellow glue and a double glue joint. When the glue was tacky, I pressed the fin in place and realized that my sanding of the trailing edges has quite possibly caused some problems with getting and exact fit.

I let it rest there for a while while I wnet back to work and contemplated how to handle the rest.

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MysticalRockets

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I just got through skimming the instructions when I got paged to the hospital.

Such is life. More later.
Man, I hate when that happens. As one of the few registered Wiccan/Pagan clergy in the state, when the call comes, you go. No arguments, no discussion. You just go.
 

JAL3

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Man, I hate when that happens. As one of the few registered Wiccan/Pagan clergy in the state, when the call comes, you go. No arguments, no discussion. You just go.
Its an occupation hazzard.
 

jflis

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A couple of ideas to help you out with regard to the sanding that you've already done.

With regard to the fin tips that you rounded off. Take a sanding block and flatten them back out. Shouldn't take much to get a bit of a flat edge back on them.

With regard to sanding the trailing edge and not being sure of the fin placement with regard to the line you drew. Although you'd have to be careful, you could take a measurement of where the fin strake leaves the body tube (where the shroud will sit) and verify that the same corner of each of the other fins is the same distance from *that* end of the tube. that is the critical point, so if you can get that measurement it should work fine.

Great build thread, thanks :)

jim
 

JAL3

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A couple of ideas to help you out with regard to the sanding that you've already done.

With regard to the fin tips that you rounded off. Take a sanding block and flatten them back out. Shouldn't take much to get a bit of a flat edge back on them.

With regard to sanding the trailing edge and not being sure of the fin placement with regard to the line you drew. Although you'd have to be careful, you could take a measurement of where the fin strake leaves the body tube (where the shroud will sit) and verify that the same corner of each of the other fins is the same distance from *that* end of the tube. that is the critical point, so if you can get that measurement it should work fine.

Great build thread, thanks :)

jim
That makes sense. I'll give it a try as soon as I get back to it.

THanks,
 

JAL3

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After a lot of angst, I checked the distance from the front dege of the fin strake to the aft end of the tube. I figured that as long as I kept that constant, the strakes should line up with the paper transition satisfactorily. The problem I have with an operation like this is the ruler. I know better, but something deep inside of me says that all those little tick marks between the digits are "optional". I DO know how to read them but I seem to get a different result each time. So it is that I went metric.

The remaining fins were put on with yellow glue double joints. I am prepared to swear on a stack of bibles that the numbers were correct when I applied the fins. The got sneaky and shifted a bit as the glue dried, however.

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JAL3

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As the fins were drying, I began to work on the nosecone. I decided to try something I had read about. Instead of using Elmer's filler, I drizzled thin CA all over it to harden it up before trying to sand it smooth. It gave my tearducts a workout but the NC is definitely a lot more durable now than it came to me. I also screwed in the eye screw on the base of the NC and secured it with a dab of yellow glue.

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JAL3

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When the fins were firmly glued into place, it was time to see how well the transition shroud fit. I slid it down, keeping the joint on the transition aligned with one of the strakes to keep it hidden. It fit better than I had hoped. There were a few gaps but they would be easy to take care of. It was not glued into place yet.

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JAL3

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One of the centering rings was slid down over the motor tube and seated into the transition. It went in a bit deeper than I had expected but there was still enough showing to allow the upper BT to have something to hold on to. The ring was glued into place.

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JAL3

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The upper ring was then put on flush with the forward end of the tube and glued into place. The Kevlar shock cord mount was then tied around the top of the up and glued to the bottom of the centering ring.

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JAL3

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When the glue on the rings had dried, the upper body tube was test fitted and found to be fine. It was then removed, glue swabbed into the interior, the Kevlar passed through, and it was placed. I was very happy with the fit.

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JAL3

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I'm actually much futher along on it. I jsut have not yet had the chance to write it up.

Maybe this afternoon.
 

Pantherjon

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Lookin good John! I think I have one of those in my 'Kit Room'..LOL..'One of these days' I need to do an inventory!:rolleyes:
 

JAL3

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Lookin good John! I think I have one of those in my 'Kit Room'..LOL..'One of these days' I need to do an inventory!:rolleyes:
Thanks.


If you'd like, I'll come over and do the inventory for you. I'd even haul away all the "expired and out of date" ones for you. No charge!
 
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