Hello from Lexington, Kentucky

James53

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Hello, I'm getting back into the rocket hobby after about 54 years. I wasn't that prolific a builder back then because of lack of funds. Coincidentally I now sort of have the same problem as a retiree with a fixed income, but I need a hobby to keep me from just being a couch potato in front of the TV.

Back in the day my crowning achievement as a rocketeer was the 3 stage Estes Astron Farside which I think was only the third rocket I built. I wound up taking it into 9th grade science class and we all went up to the football field to launch it. Luckily it couldn't have turned out any better. It took off straight up, we heard the two pops as the boosters dropped off and lost sight of the third stage. But the chute came into view and it took a long time to land but wound up only about 10 yards away from the launch site…beginners luck, I guess. I got a round of applause from the class and the teacher got all enthused about it and said how he was going to try to start a model rocket club at the school, but nothing ever came of it.

Anyway, I'm trying to decide which kits to get start back in with, but the big question is where to launch them. I know there's a club (Bluesrocks) that has a launch site in Elizabethtown, KY but that's about 90 miles away and at my age I don't care to drive all that much anymore. There are a number of large parks here in Lexington but I'm not sure about what regulations there are. In any event, I’m looking forward to getting back into the hobby and participating in this forum. James
 

RocketScott

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Howdy neighbor, I’m in Lexington too

I’m slowly getting back into rocketry after ~15 years. Also just moved back to Lex after being gone for 20 years

I used to launch out at veterans park but that’s all built up now. Haven’t checked out Jacobson park recently. There used to be some bigger fields in the back

I’d like to make it out to some bluesrocks launches once I get everything together for mid and high power. Half my stuff is in boxes and I don’t have a great workshop set up yet. Maybe we can carpool
 

hobie1dog

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One of my great friends just finished a Saturn 5 rocket and is in Lexington as well. So if you guys find a local spot he would love to join you
 

prfesser

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Hello James, and welcome to the forums.

I retired about four years ago. "Only" need to drive about 65 miles to the monthly launches of MCMC in Hopkinsville once they start next month or in November, but it's very, very much worth it! MUCH less concern about getting your rocket back on a large field. Flying with others is far more enjoyable than by yourself. Stay as long or as short a time as you wish. Watch others flying large projects. Be sure to bring water and maybe a sandwich or three. A folding chair. Some will bring pop-up shelters to avoid being sun-scorched, and they're always happy to share with newbies.

If you have grandkids, bring 'em along! I don't know of a launch that doesn't welcome spectators. Help them build a simple rocket or two, get some motors, you'll have them hooked before you know it.

Advances in rocketry have been absolutely phenomenal in the last half-century. Want to know how high the rocket went? There are altimeters no bigger than a nickel---WITH battery---that can be dropped into a payload section for that. Don't want to walk half a mile to retrieve a rocket? There are dual-deployment altimeters; the Jolly Logic Chute Release is extremely popular and doesn't require wiring and such.

If you aren't having fun, you aren't doing it right. ;)

Best,
Terry
 

smstachwick

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Sounds like you’ve got a number of recommendations on launch sites. The big things are to check local regulations and get the permission of the property owner. Fire and police departments might be able to help you with the regs. Join NAR or Tripoli to get insurance coverage (worth every penny!) if you’re trying to secure your own launch site instead of flying with a club.

As far as kits go, you can’t really go wrong with a beginner or intermediate kit from Estes or Quest by AeroTech. Fliskits and Apogee may be worth looking into as well.
 

JPX2000

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James,
We have several members from the Lexington area who fly with BluesRocks. It’s a year-round field and we actually fly off of the crop (sod). I understand about the 65 mile drive, but it’s worth it once you see the site.

Welcome back into the hobby. And just an additional piece of advice about retirement - don’t stop moving and staying busy.

Joe P.
 

bmonagle

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I have been away from Lexington for 45 years, the field I flew from as a teenager was a cow pasture adjacent to our back yard on the south side of town, near Fayette Mall. Unfortunately the field has been developed and is now all housing. Flew RC sailplanes at Jacobson Park. I now work part time (5 - 10 hours per week because the company still needs my help) and seem to be just as busy as before I semi-retired. Always something else needing my attention. Luckily I now live in southern Delaware, 45 minutes from the MDRA launch sites.
 
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