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Jan 26, 2009
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saturn v model at the national air and space museum in washington? we went on a class trip and there was this model, with a launchpad, and it said it had flown...

just wondering...
That would be the 1/34th scale Saturn V and launch complex built by David P. Gianakos. The model was built to fly, but David never had the heart to fly that one after all the work, and donated it to the Smithsonian. In some back issues of Sport Rocketry (or Was it Ameican Spacemodeling at the time) there are articles describing that one. He also built and FLEW a 1/34 (same scale) Saturn 1B to test some of the concepts for the Saturn V. That was detailed in HPR, March/April 1992.

It is a nice model, I will try to post some photos some time, as I also saw it at the smithsonian and snapped some pics.


That thing must be gigantic at 1.34th scale! That makes the capsule 4.58" in diameter!

Over 11 feet tall!


thats not exactly the one i was talking about... the one i was was maybe 5 or 6 feet tall but that thing is HUGE...
More info, which can be found in the articles mentioned earlier, is that the swing arms on the pad work, there would have been some kind of smoke system to simulate boil-off of the LOX, the four outboard main motors were gimballed for stability, second and third stages use clear, pop-out fins, and a C motor would have been used to pull away the escape tower.

Oh, yeah...and Dave also built a same-scale, non-flying N-1 that I believe is now sitting next to the Saturn V.

I don't feel so bad now that I never flew my 1/10 Little Joe II...

LOL! Looks like you have an excuse now to go back to the Smithonian!

well yah...

it wasn't the smithsonian but i HAVE to check that out

at the NAASM there was also the life sized goddard rocket that i did for a school project, so i scored extra credit there...
Though the 1/34th scale Saturn was fabricated to be flown, all three stages! the owner chickened out and donated it to the museum instead. There was a very long and detailed account of the construction, each stage and even some test flights of components in AmSpam while it was being constructed, but the all up model NEVER flew. Truely a shame as the internal ducting, lox "smoke" feature, gimbles and a load of other goodies will never be appreciated as a static display.
Its an OK model with Loads of scale and semi-scale detail, but after looking at the model and more important Pad 39 tower structure... well, I'll be interested to see what other models think of this piece. As a flying model it would have been impressive, as a museum piece..I'm not sure. Looks very rough. The N-1 mentioned, which was turned from a solid piece of wood in a smaller 1/60th or so scale to match a smaller existing museum fabricated Saturn-V model in one of the lower showcased still in NASM's dowtown Washington museum. Both the N-1 and the museums maybe 1/60th?? Saturn-V are much better quality then the super big 1/34th Saturn-v complex.
Yeah're right about the scale of the N-1. I was mixing things up because David did both the 1/34 Saturn AND the N-1, so I assumed...

Well...we all know about assuming...:D
Originally posted by Sirius Rocketry
He also built and FLEW a 1/34 (same scale) Saturn 1B to test some of the concepts for the Saturn V. That was detailed in HPR, March/April 1992.

I visited the San Diego AeroSpace Museum yesterday (Tuesday) and took a picture of that very Saturn 1B on display in a case.
How did the gimballed engine bells work? How were they guided to the "straight & narrow"?
From what I understand, he had an electronic gyroscope that sent signals to the gimbal actuators. There was an article about either it or something similar in an old issue of HPR (94-95?) Mine are all packed away or I'd look it up.

I think the same system was going to be used on a large scale (over 4 feet tall, maybe larger) Vanguard a few years ago at a NARAM. I think it took first in static, but didn't fly because of either winds or the field was too small.