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In praise of Wayne Kellner

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neil_w

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With the Andromeda's return to the public consciousness thanks to the Semroc re-issue, I've been admiring what a beautiful design it is.

Then I realized it was a Wayne Kellner design, and went back and looked at his list of Estes designs.

Wow.

Here are some highlights:
  • Alien Invader
  • Black Hole Space Probe
  • Interceptor
  • Mars Lander
  • Orbital Transport
  • Satellite Interceptor
  • Space Transporter America
  • Scissor-Wing Transport
  • Starship Vega
  • USS Andromeda
That is a whole bunch of all-time great iconic sci-fi rocket designs right there, most of which look every bit as cool today as when they were originally designed.

Just came here to pay tribute to his awesomeness.
 

manixFan

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Wow, that is quite a list. He really had an eye for classic sci-fi designs as well as more realistic looking 'star fighters'. I think most folks would agree the Interceptor is in the top three of iconic Estes rockets.


Tony
 

Joekeyo

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My Mars Lander is nearly complete. It only lacks decals. What a wonderful feat of engineering. The instructions are well thought out - 59 steps! It took about 3 weeks of 5 hour days to complete it to this point. It is arguably the most challenging build that I have done so far. The astron Explorer, Orbital transport, and Zooch Saturn V all deserve honorable mention in the build difficulty contest.

Wayne Kellner published a rocsim (or equivalent) file that is publicly available. I used it to confirm changes in CG with various nose weights. I'm pretty good with Open Rocket right up to the phantom tube bit. How he did it, I have no idea. It is amazing.

I too, pay tribute to your awesomeness Wayne Kellner. Thank you for your generosity. Your are a scholar and a gentleman
 

mach7

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He was a steely eyed model missile man!
One of the best, I love all of his designs.
 

Jeff Lassahn

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Wow. I've had the reaction recently that while Estes is making very reasonable new kits they're just Not As Cool As The Ones I Remember. It had not occurred to me until now how much this might be a reaction to the style of specific people who did the designs.

How do you find out the name of the person who did a design?
 

afadeev

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How do you find out the name of the person who did a design?

BTW, whatever happened to Wayne Kellner, and the other historic Estes designers?

From interview with Vern Estes:
"Almost none of those great rocket kits that collectors pay dearly for today came from my brain. They were the brainchildren of people like Bill Simon, Gene Street, Wayne Kellner, and Mike Dorffler. "

 

neil_w

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Happy to see this thread get a bit of a second wind, after not having much of a first wind. :)
 

neil_w

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Don't forget two classics, the Goblin and the Demon.
Vintage picture here:•> Vintage Estes Rockets | Estes K-Kit Designers | Wayne Kellner <•
He designed quite a number of kits beyond the ones I listed (including co-design of all the original Goonies). I was more focused here on his sci-fi designs, which are IMHO without peer.

I confess that most 3/4FNCs do nothing for me, and that includes the two you mentioned (although the Demon does have nice decals). That's not a knock on Kellner, the product line needs all types of rockets.
 

RobertH3

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Original 1271 Renegade too. Favorite 3fnc when I was 12. There's a reason his other fnc designs are still around. Elegant. Don't need to be complex to look good.
Anybody can design a 3FNC that flies well, but designing one that everyone wants to build is another matter.

Cheers / Robert
 
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