Getting HYDRA-ted

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Well-Known Member
Dec 31, 2002
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Semroc has RE-produced yet again another fantastic kit, called the HYDRA VII. This is the (7) C motor cluster rocket...

Here is a couple of pics of my HYDRA VII Prod #10 that I started building yesterday. what is pictured did indeed take all day to make...this rocket has a lot of parts, and steps...

word to the wise, cut your own nosecones in half, do not let a buddy with a new table saw cut them for you :rolleyes: all did turn out well, but it was looking grim there for a while...
...cutting nosecones in half??

"U-betcha" This is one of those steps, where you stress over whether or not it will turn out right...and mine turned out pretty jamin.
just one more shot of the Hydra VII with the main booster nearly assembled...then I need to mount 15 booster fins known on the instructions as "Augmentor" fins...thats right, this rocket has (6) inner fins, surrounded by a ring (tube) fin, that will have (12) small fins, and (3) main fins with pods mounted on the outer ends.

That's awesome! I've been thinking about clusters lately, we just picked up another Executioner to put 3 24mm motors in it, I'll probably start on it late this week.

There's alot of fins on that baby, you've got patience man!

Originally posted by Vicious
There's alot of fins on that baby, you've got patience man!
The patience of a Jedi is needed with this kit. There be alot of bits and alot of building. Good if you like building (like me! :D ).

Still got a long way to go on mine, even after a days building. The scarey bit now - spliting & sanding the small nosecones :eek:
Looks one one heck of a project.
I'll add it to the list. I'm not scared!:D
The challenging fun factor runs high in this kit,...maybe I should try to finish this one and a couple of others I started on this forum. I'm about 8 mini fins away from the sanding, then the painting.

If anyone has this kit in hand, then I have a question for ya:

The Hydra's paint job looks like it could be Red White and Blue, but the card insert of the kit makes it kinda look like the rocket is Red, Blue & Grey...Question, what would you paint the main body if you were going to try the challenging paint job that is on the the card insert? White, or Light Grey?

I've been drooling over this rocket for a little while now - just haven't cut loose the cabbage to bring one home. I have the webpage on Semroc bookmarked!

Anyway, It looks gray to me (rather than white.)

There certainly are some cool possibilities.

The scheme that I have in mind will be white (as the main color) and then otherwise like the card, only substituting orange for the red and green for the blue. Dunno why, but it just sounds cool to me. I don't have enough orange or green in my rocket fleet (until I get that Pershing 1A built, that is.......................)
Good question, Johnnierkt. I'd always assumed that the cover paint job was white, and the shading was shadow; but grey as the main colour - thats not so silly. I've got loads of white rockets, but no grey. Doubt if I'll be doing the full paint job, as done on the cover, but I'll try my best and just see how dificult the masking will be.

I've cut & sanded the small nosecones, now. Its not as scarey as all that when you get round to it! ;)
My favorite Rocket color is Purple, and I have thought about keeping the scheme of the Hydra the same, but substituting, say maybe the Blue for Purple, and keeping with a light grey main airframe...Red, Purple, and Light Grey are good compliments too one another. I still have lots to think about...for $23, this is one of the best kits I have had the pleasure of hurdling over the challenges.
Originally posted by Johnnierkt

The Hydra's paint job looks like it could be Red White and Blue, but the card insert of the kit makes it kinda look like the rocket is Red, Blue & Grey...Question, what would you paint the main body if you were going to try the challenging paint job that is on the the card insert? White, or Light Grey?


The original color is white. The ambient lighting is turned down to get better contrast for the cover art. This makes white and bright colors duller, but prints better.

Most of the Hydra's I have made in the past have been grey (primer.) The more time I spend on a rocket, the more likely the "rocket gods" get to keep it.
Originally posted by Carl
The original color is white.
Well, there we have it - the definative answer! :D Aint TRF great!

I'm still thinking of painting mine grey though! ;)

Just the Augmenter fins to go now, on mine. Top kit Carl. :D Highly recomended, if you like building (like me).
I just ordered my Hydra VII (along with the Triton and Lil' Hercules). :). This is one of those rockets I want built in time for the next CMASS launch :). I have a question though... if you have to split the nosecones, does that mean you have to split the outboard tubes too?

The cones hold the upper body tube in the center of the outboard tubes. The upper body in fact is just glued to the top of the outboards...very interesting design, you will enjoy the build of this rocket thoroughly.


Thank you for clarifying the main bodytube coloring...Purple (instead of blue), red or yellow, and main white it will be.
Oh... don't worry! I will enjoy its build :). I am rubbing my hands together, laughing like the madman I am just thinking about it. Unfortunately today is a holiday… the mail does not run today… so I have to wait an extra day to receive my kits :(. Oh well… I am in the same boat with the NSL2003/NYPOWER DVD set I ordered from Hanger 11…
Finally managed to finish putting on all the 'Augmenter fins'. This has been the most satisfying rocket I've built. Can't wait to get this painted, and flown. :D

Here she is, in my back-room-paint-booth, next to my Big Bertha for scale, and my almost painted Laser X.

I concur, this rocket is very satifying to build. Nice work by the way...I need to get started on my Lazer X.
That rocket looks sooo cool! And I imagine it will look cooler once I have one built and holding it in my hands :D
I just got my Hydra VII... I must say... I am so impressed! This rocket looks HUGE!!!... The body part is a BT -60!!! I did not realize it was THAT BIG!!! WOW!!!. I am going to have so much fun with this one!!! And only $23!!! WOW... wow wow wow...

Not your 3FNC rocket by a long shot, this is a piece of art. I can't wait to see what "Super Kit" Semroc decides to kit in the future. (i.e. the S.S.R. Scorpian, the E.S.S. Raven, or the U.S.S. America)

My vote was for the U.S.S. America...sweet!!
google the three kit names list above, and you will see some of the coolest rocket kits of the past.

Keep us posted of your progress when you build n3tjm...
Sure. No problem. I will start construction at Jakes house :). I will probabily have it built in one or two days (I love laser cut fins). I could not help meyself... I HAD to open the bag right away... I did control myself long enough to find some scissors though... so the bag has been opened nice and neetly....

First flight 7 B4-4's :D

Hmm... 7 D13-10W's.........

I would love to see the S.S.R. Scorpian cloned :)
I'm back...again

I was able to make some progress on a lot of vehicles this weekend including getting back to my Semroc Hydra VII.

Let's back up a little, and update:

All fins were covered in a sticky backed paper to cover all wood grains. Too many fins to try to sand and seal.
Last fins was finally mounted and all fillets were put in...thats alot of fillets. I used thick CA as my fillet maker.

Spot glazing putty was added to all nose cones and the damaged tube...:rolleyes:

Yes, I had the Hydra on he counter in the kitchen, and it started to roll off, and when I reached to grab it I crushed the booster against the edge of the counter. This caused quite a damage dent in the main tube...filled it in with the putty and sanded.

here is the Hydra VII before the KILZ primer was added:
Next is a slight mod I incorporated.

At work we supply a customer with small data collection lazer scan/computers. These items come with touch screens, and a little stick to poke at it with...Those little sticks is what I used for the probes on the outer fins. With my luck, on 1st landing they will breal off and take the fin with it...
This might be a better view of the PDA pens that I used for the fin probes.
This a close up of the damage point, and the PDA pens again. This rocket is an absolute LOVE to build!
Here is the booster of my Hydra VII with a coat of KILZ primer. Half a can of KILZ primer either filled or hid all the tube grooves and imperfections in my rocket. Expensive, but worth every bit the price, KILZ is your friend...

...c'mon chant with me now "KILZ is my friend, KILZ is your frien..." ah never mind.