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Josh's 38mm Argent Build

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joshismycaptain

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So, this is the first post of many. I'm setting out today to build a sweet Estes Argent. Though I plan to launch on 29mm motors, I am customizing it a little to 38mm diameter motor mount.

In my past rocket life I was quick to buy, quick to build and generally unsatisfied with my work. I wanted more rockets, not nicer ones.

This time around I'm doing the opposite. I'm seeing this as a meditative hobby. My youngest just hit Kindergarten, and with my generally posh schedule as an airline pilot, I have a tremendous amount of time nearly every day at home alone (unless you count the mutt) to build rockets.

I'm hoping to hover around the top end of Mid-Power and dabble in L1. This Argent will be carefully built to a higher standard then I've built to before. Though it won't be perfect, I am looking forward to the process this time as well as the finished product. I plan to fiberglass this one, which will be my first fiberglass attempt.

I'll post photos here as I go.

My goal is to have this rocket ready for launch this Winter at the first annual Mille Lacs Lake Rocket Launch Event (a Winter event on the ice I plan to create but haven't begun to yet :D )

Josh
 

Rex R

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an AT G67(AT 38/120 case) would probably give it a nice ride.
Rex
 

joshismycaptain

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I'd like to use one of those gadgets that holds the chute until set deployment. I haven't looked them up yet, just seen them in a few videos. Seems like an easy way to have dual deploy. Can anyone tell me what it is and how they work. Also,,, does this thing sound reasonable for my Argent build? I figure if it ends up being pretty high performance I should consider my options...
 

Rex R

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main problems I have seen with it are user errors such as, forgetting to turn it on, and not securing it to the rocket/ shock cord. if you plan to use it at a club launch inform the rso/lco that you are using a chute release. a streamer attached below the chute greatly aids in tracking the rocket while it is descending.
Rex
 

BDB

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I'm hoping to hover around the top end of Mid-Power and dabble in L1.
^^ famous last words!

Glad you are going to reinforce the airframe. I just glassed my first tubes recently. It's not as bad as I thought it would be. Go for it!
 

joshismycaptain

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main problems I have seen with it are user errors such as, forgetting to turn it on, and not securing it to the rocket/ shock cord. if you plan to use it at a club launch inform the rso/lco that you are using a chute release. a streamer attached below the chute greatly aids in tracking the rocket while it is descending.
Rex
Cool
 

ActingLikeAKid

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Watching intently. I have an Argent that I've put an H in with no issue. Used the JL Chute Release with no issue. But I used the 29mm mount. I have a Ventris I'm thinking about putting 38mm in... What's your plan for the centering rings? Are you going to mod the stock ones or fabricate/buy new ones?
 

Nytrunner

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What spawned the idea of reinforcing your argent with fiberglass? Are you planning to go transonic?
 

joshismycaptain

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Watching intently. I have an Argent that I've put an H in with no issue. Used the JL Chute Release with no issue. But I used the 29mm mount. I have a Ventris I'm thinking about putting 38mm in... What's your plan for the centering rings? Are you going to mod the stock ones or fabricate/buy new ones?
I held the 38 over the center ring and traced. Then I measured around to be sure it was centered and got lucky! Carefully made a beginning cut with a utility knife and cut the rest out with a carving knife. I did this yesterday, and the entire process (about an hour), I was saying to myself, "This is NOT how I should be doing this. I should be clamping it down and using a saber saw, or even a side cut bit on a dremel, or just buying the right rings". It worked, but whatever you do,,,, be careful not to cut yourself...
 

joshismycaptain

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What spawned the idea of reinforcing your argent with fiberglass? Are you planning to go transonic?
Well,,, there's always that possibility, but no,,, I have no plans to pass mach. I guess I like the weight and durability of a the glassed rockets I've seen. They seem more sound then cardboard and wood. As long as a rocket flies I care little about speed or altitude. I'm more interested in seamless construction and durability bouncing around a hobby room, vehicle, cabin shed, etc...
 

joshismycaptain

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Watching intently. I have an Argent that I've put an H in with no issue. Used the JL Chute Release with no issue. But I used the 29mm mount. I have a Ventris I'm thinking about putting 38mm in... What's your plan for the centering rings? Are you going to mod the stock ones or fabricate/buy new ones?
Don't watch too intently. I'm pretty good at hasty builds with little research and mediocre results. I'm no model. But I have fun!
 

K'Tesh

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I'll be watching this thread. :pop:

Just remember, you promised photos. :wink:
 

Nytrunner

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Well,,, there's always that possibility, but no,,, I have no plans to pass mach. I guess I like the weight and durability of a the glassed rockets I've seen. They seem more sound then cardboard and wood. As long as a rocket flies I care little about speed or altitude. I'm more interested in seamless construction and durability bouncing around a hobby room, vehicle, cabin shed, etc...
Definitely can't blame you. I err on the side of overbuilding with the Mid powers, and, if my level 1 cert (Big SAM in sig) was any indication, I'll probably continue in my High power attempts.
And since you don't 'need' the mechanical properties for your Argent, it sounds like a great practice case. Good luck!
 

joshismycaptain

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I was considering having the body break at the aft seam. I like doing this to ensure better success with chute deployment. Though I've never had a problem yet, I look at the motor to transition airspace and hope it can pressurize enough to deploy my chute.

Has anyone had this problem on an Argent? I've already glued my seam together,,, so that's probably going to remain as is. Any other adjustments I can make to reduce volume inside the chute chamber? I should have ran my motor tube farther up the body. ::deep breath::

Roll the dice? I mean,,,,, Estes designed it that way!
 

Nytrunner

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I was considering having the body break at the aft seam. I like doing this to ensure better success with chute deployment. Though I've never had a problem yet, I look at the motor to transition airspace and hope it can pressurize enough to deploy my chute.
I think breaking at the transition makes for better chute deployment. The ejection charge will push the chute out of the tube as opposed to possibly stuffing it into the forward section when breaking at the aft joint. The 29 mm motors can pressurize a leviathan's whole body tube, so the argent shouldn't be a problem at all. If you want to be extra sure, you could try putting some more powder in a glove tip and taping it to the top of the motor's ejection well.
 

Rex R

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a stock argent does not have issues deploying the chute, providing that your chute slides readily and you don't over do the wadding.
Rex
 
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