L2 kit... I'm thinking Torrent with Dual Deploy... other ideas?

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tammaraki

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Hi All,

My first post.

I have my Zephyr for L1 and I'm thinking about what to build for my L2 rocket. I kinda like the Mad Cow Torrent because it is dual deploy ready, but maybe a slightly larger rocket would be good for a low and slow L2 certification flight. Some people recommend as simple a set up as possible for certification flights.

54mm or 38mm?

What do the more experienced folks think?
 

Antares JS

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Torrent will work but it screams on I motors so I wouldn't recommend it if you want to go low and slow. That said, going low and slow is not absolutely necessary, just recommended to help ensure recovery.

54mm adapted down to 38 is probably your best bet to give you the most level 2 options unless you're okay with building two different rockets.

I'm not going to recommend a specific kit because ultimately, you should build the rocket you like that gets the performance you want. Think about what you want to fly in the future. You probably don't want to blow a bunch of money on a level 2 rocket only to have it be in a style/performance envelope you aren't interested in and won't fly again.
 

T-Rex

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Welcome to the forum! Sometimes it may seem like we bite, but really in the big picture we are all here to enjoy the hobby and keep in same.

I will only make a couple of suggestions for you to consider. Build something that you will enjoy flying. There is little sense in building a model just to certify, then put in the closet to be forgotten. If you like fast and high, why build a low and slow?

I agree with keeping things simple for a cert flight. The more complex the plumbing the easier it is to stop up the drain. That being said, I have several models which are built with dual deploy in mind for the future, but for now I fly them single deploy.

You can always adapt down. If you think you want to fly 54mm motors at some point, then build for 54mm motors. A 54/38 adapter is easy to make and many different ones are available across vendors.
 

dr wogz

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I will concur with Antares & T-rex.. get what you like, what you want, what you ..

What cases do you have, what cases do you plan to get? This will also help you with your MMT sizing. You can be plenty happy with L2 motors in the 38mm range (I am!). Otherwise you may always be using the adapter.

Stay away from Patriots, as they tend to require a fair amount of nose weight (small fins)
Stay away from big forward fins (Seawolf) as again, much needed nose weight, and possible drag separation
Stay away from minimum diameter, as .. well.. bu-bye!

The Madcow Super DX3 is also a popular choice. And it has an ample AV bay & forward section for DD flights.

Everyone owns a Wildman DarkStar.. might now be the time to think about a fiberglass kit?
 

John_461

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There are going to be a bunch of considerations when selecting a rocket to build for your level 2 cert.

How big is your field? What is it's max altitude?
How confident are you in your construction skills? eg paper or fiberglass...
What do YOU want to fly? Do you like "fast and loud"? Or are you a "Low and Show" kind of person?
What is your budget? Fiberglass is more expensive than paper, but it's a lot more durable. Don't get me started on the cost of electronics.

Talk to the more experienced flyers at your club. I'm sure they're willing to part with a wealth of advise specific to your location.

I wish I could tell you more, but this is your journey. Take your time, enjoy it, whichever path you choose.
 

Scott_650

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The one question to answer that may help you with your choice is the why question - why do you want your HPR certifications? Achieving anything that’s challenging or difficult without knowing the why can be problematic - knowing the why can definitely inform you as to the how...
 

tammaraki

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The site where I do most of my HPR flying has a 9000 ft waiver and is open country. I will also be at LDRS at Bonneville this year and may do my L2 there.

I like the idea of flying high, I am an engineer in the commercial space industry so I will want to geek out on the electronics.

My end goal is to get an L3 to build and fly some large rockets very high, possibly as part of a team.
 

drgarymartinez

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Hi All,

My first post.

I have my Zephyr for L1 and I'm thinking about what to build for my L2 rocket. I kinda like the Mad Cow Torrent because it is dual deploy ready, but maybe a slightly larger rocket would be good for a low and slow L2 certification flight. Some people recommend as simple a set up as possible for certification flights.

54mm or 38mm?

What do the more experienced folks think?
I, too, certified on the Zephyr. I built the Apogee Perigrine for Level 2. It is built with dual deployment, but can be flown without using dual deployment, which is what I did for my Level 2 cert. it flew perfectly. Consider the Perigrine.
 

charles.garnes

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Hi All,

My first post.

I have my Zephyr for L1 and I'm thinking about what to build for my L2 rocket. I kinda like the Mad Cow Torrent because it is dual deploy ready, but maybe a slightly larger rocket would be good for a low and slow L2 certification flight. Some people recommend as simple a set up as possible for certification flights.

54mm or 38mm?

What do the more experienced folks think?
 

charles.garnes

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I got my L2 with the Zephyr and the DD conversion kit with a CTI J 285. 3100'.
 

dwightr

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If you want to go inexpensive just add an avbay to the Zephyr
Mine did about 3400’ on Aerotech J270 DMS
Just barely kept it in sight at apogee
 

Ez2cDave

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Jmhepworth

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If you’re ready for fiberglass, I like the Wildman Juniors. Or the 3 inch to get the 54mm motor mount. I recently put a K in a 3 inch Darkstar and kept it inside our 10,000 foot waiver. Since you’re planning to come to LDRS, we will have call ins to 25,000 feet, so you could put a J in a Junior and let it rip. You’ll love the recovery area.
 

tammaraki

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I would like to build a glass rocket before too long, but I really have no experience working with it.

How hard is it to get started with the glass kits?
 

NateB

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I would like to build a glass rocket before too long, but I really have no experience working with it.

How hard is it to get started with the glass kits?
I thought it was pretty easy. I'd recommend one of the Wildman Jr or Mini kits and a small package of Rocket Poxy to try it out. While I like the ease of working with wood glue, overall I like the durability of a fiberglass kit (5 yr old caused hangar rash) and not dealing with filling spirals and wood grain.
 

Jmhepworth

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I like how sturdy fiberglass rockets are. It’s not difficult, but they take so much longer to build. I like going back to paper and balsa because the go together so quickly.

Find CJ’s guide to building a fiberglass rocket and read through the thread to get an idea how difficult it is.

 

thzero

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Fiberglass kits are no more difficult than a carboard kits. A few things to watch out for such as cleaning the parts with soap and water, and when sanding using proper attire. You are using epoxy rather than wood glue, although you can use epoxy with carboard too.

Many of the items in CJ's guide apply to cardboard, fibreglass, carbonfibre, plastic, etc. Especially considering that CJ is building a dual deploy rocket with multiple sets of fins - thats just as complicated with any construction material.

I like how sturdy fiberglass rockets are. It’s not difficult, but they take so much longer to build. I like going back to paper and balsa because the go together so quickly.
 

Mike Haberer

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You do not absolutely need DD for L2. I'm going to do my L2 with my LOC Minie Magg (short, fat, lots of nose weight for a low and slow flight) and a JL Chute Release. I've already flown it on an I240W with a Chute Release, L2 will be on a J270W to 3,400 feet. That eliminates a lot of variables in the flight (all the DD setup and testing plus the expense of a good tracker). I'll do DD at my leisure once I get my L2 as my prep for L3, where it is required. I used a DX3 for my L1, single deploy. Could have used the Minie Magg, it would have flown lower, about 900 feet, on a baby H. Easy-peasey.

I didn't use a drouge on my last flight of the Minie Magg and the kevlar shock cord got wrapped once around the top rail button. It tried to zipper the airframe when the chute release popped. It made a barely discernable dent on the top of the tube. LOC cardboard tubes are tough as nails and L2 worthy without glassing them.

Avoid glass if you haven't done it before, it's just another variable to the build that you can avoid, IMHO. The goal is to get L2, not try out new building methods.
 

Pete.D

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I got my L1 on a Torrent and L2 on a Katana, using conventional motor deployment (both offer DD capability, but I opted not to for simplicity's sake). I had to add 2 lbs ballast to the Katana to avoid blowing through the waiver ceiling on the smallest J that I could obtain, a 38mm Cesaroni J335 with an adapter. I was successful but if I had to do it again I'd use an LOC Minie Magg like Mike suggested, using drag rather than ballast to limit altitude. Above all, make it as simple as possible: I've used a Chute Release for other rockets, but its use adds additional risk and is not necessary at moderate altitude.

The Katana is a nice strong rocket for not too much money; It's got a 54mm motor mount, DD capability, and reportedly can go supersonic over 10k ft on a K if you've got the field for it.
 

tammaraki

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I have a Jolly Logic chute release so I may just use my Zephyr with a J270.

I did order a 4" Fusion that is a DD kit with a 54mm mount and can handle a K185. I think I can use this to build proficiency for my L3 project.

Thanks everyone for the great advice! Hopefully I'll have the chance to meet some of you at LDRS!
 

dr wogz

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and let's not forget Mike at MacPerformance Rocketry. His kits are kinda "in between" .. they are Canvas phenolic. they build like a fiberglass rocket, but don't' have the initial dangers of working with fiberglass (working with, getting cut by, inhaling "glass")..
 

Andrew Brown

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I did my L1 with the Torrent, and inching my way up to L2. I've got several H and I flights on it, and every indication seems that it will fly well for L2. One of the things that really appealed to me with the Torrent was that it was advertised as an "all in one" package, complete with harnesses (scrapped them for Kevlar and more appropriate length), parachutes (also scrapped as a 36" results in about 30 fps when fully loaded with electronics) and altimeter bay kit (yes, also scrapped for a more customized sled). Overall, it's a nice kit and should hit 3600 ft on a J350, but if you are like me, you'll end up upgrading much of it. For the price, I agree with a lot of the other posts and spending just a little more could get you an L2 fiberglass kit. The fiberglass kits do go together very smooth.
 

Handeman

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If your home site has a 9,000 ft. waiver and that is where you will fly the most, I would pick a L2 kit with a 54mm MMT that is heavy enough to stay below that 9,000 ft. on the largest 54mm motors available. Remember, eventually you'll want to stuff the largest motor the rocket will handle in it.
If you'll be flying at a higher waiver at least once a year, go with a kit that can go higher than 9,000 on that motor, but if not, stick with something you can max out at your home site.

The other consideration is what is the practical limit at your home site. It may have the 9K waiver, but the max you may want to fly on most days may be 5K. Pick a rocket that works for that.

The bottom line is you need to learn to "fly the field" at your home field. That takes time and experience. I would suggest you get a dozen or two flight on your L1 rocket with small H to large I motors. Once you've done that, you will have a much better idea of what you want for an L2 rocket.
 

ltrisollini

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The Apogee Katana is an excellent kit, and a beautiful DD rocket in flight. Got my level 2 last year (at Airfest 26) with it, flying on 38 mm motors using a 54 mm to 38 mm adaptor. The 54 mm motor mount gives you room to grow with longer burning level 2 motors.
 

tammaraki

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I did my first flight with the Zephyr on Sunday, G79W with a 4 second delay... L1 attempt coming up Saturday....

I was hoping to post video of the launch, but one was 4k, too large and the low res version was an extension not recognized. I'll convert it and upload it tomorrow.
 
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