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Level One Certification

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redsox15

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I am interested in getting my level one certification towards the summer of this launching season. I know some of the requirements needed to go about this but I am not entirely sure on the whole process. I know you need to be at least 18 and build and successfully fly a rocket with either a H or I motor. Is there anything else that I need to know and how do I start this process?

Thanks,
Redsox15
 

DAllen

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Depends...Which national org are you going to join? NAR or Tripoli? You have to be a member of one of these to "certify." I would suggest joining the organization that you local club is a part of. L1 is quite easy especially if you've flown lots of MPR stuff. The rules between NAR and TRA for certification are virtually the same just worded differently.

References:
http://www.nar.org/hpcert/index.html
http://www.tripoli.org/cert/TRA_Certification_Rules_2009.pdf

And there you go. Just don't ask which kit would be the best L1 rocket because you'll turn this thread into a 10 page debate. :p ;) :D :cool:

-DAllen
 

Rocketjoe13

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DAllen gives good advice -check with your local club(s) first. In fact, you've probably already been flying with them and should have a good idea of how and what's expected of members for good range etiquette. Our club strongly reccommends flyers progress thru the alphabet, one step at a time and then the butterflies aren't so big in the belly that achieving said goals come easier.
 

dave carver

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While alphabeticaly might be ok I went from G80-10 to I284-14 Aerotech. This was back in the confirmation not ceritification days. My rocket was 5' tall, 3" in diameter and weighed 5 lbs at lift off. It did fly on a H242-6 later to a great flight but I wanted to make sure the first time:)
 

tquigg

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Of course, you could always purchase a copy of the booklet, "A Guide to Level One Certification" through Extreme Rocketry Magazine. Gee, I wonder who wrote that? :D

Best Regards
 

redsox15

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Thanks for all the input everyone! :D One more question for everybody, does a level one flight require an altimeter? Those I am not to familiar with. To my knowledge, the high power motors do not have an ejection charge, I could be wrong.

Thanks,
redsox15
 

DAllen

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Nope. No altimeter required. In fact, most motors in the H and I range come with various delays. It's not until you get into the K and up range (and there are exceptions) that most motors do not come with ejection charges. I would not recommend an altimeter for an L1 flight. Just keep it as simple as possible IMHO.

-DAllen
 

delta22

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Rocketry is a lot of fun.

If you want to get into HPR and know what you are doing, you need to do some reading.

A very good reference is Modern High Power Rocketry 2 by Mark Canepa. Also the links in post #2 above. And spend a bunch of time reading through the many posts here and on Rocketry Planet.

You do not need an altimeter for L1 certification.

Most, but not all, H and I motors do have ejection charges.

The Cesaroni engines do have ejection charges and are very easy to work with. I used those for my L1 an L2 cert flights.
 

jadebox

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Of course, you could always purchase a copy of the booklet, "A Guide to Level One Certification" through Extreme Rocketry Magazine. Gee, I wonder who wrote that?
It's a good booklet. It helped me with my Level 1 Certification.

Of course, all the information you need to get your Level 1 is available online and you'll receive help here and from those in your local club. But, Tim's book gathers all the information into one place. It's easy-to-understand and, maybe I'm old-fashioned, but I enjoy reading about things like this in printed form and I think I absorbed more from reading the guide than I would have from reviewing web pages.

It's definitely worth the $15.

-- Roger
 

dave carver

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You don't NEED electronics for 2nd level, either. Rocketry has gotten so esoteric and expensive with the one-upmanship promoted by some rocketry sites that I have seen people try over and over, failure after failure, to get their 2nd level cert when just using the motor well delay ejection would most likely have gotten the task done on the first try.

Don't let the pressure of what others have done get in the way of your cert, get it done THEN move on to getting the electronics stuff down for your 3rd level cert.

IMHO:)
 

DAllen

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Nope, I'm only 14 and I flew my Jr. L1 this fall.

I have some restrictions, but there is a way around all of them.
But remember that only applies to the NAR and not TRA. Essentially, a Jr. L1 allows a young'n between 14 and 18 launch an H or I provided an adult with an L1 or higher is willing to sign off on the flight card.

http://www.nar.org/pdf/JRHPR.pdf

:D

I really wish TRA would do something like that.

-DAllen
 

redsox15

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One last question then I am going to start reading up on this stuff. Can I use a G motor for a Lvl one flight or is it just H and I? Just asking because I have been looking at what kit to buy and it would be bad if I bought one with the wrong mount :p
 

DAllen

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Nope...to cert you need a motor with at least an H.

http://www.nar.org/hpcert/NARhpdetails.html

Level 1 high power certification
(160.01 to 640.00 Newton-seconds impulse)

1. The modeler must demonstrate his ability to build and fly a rocket containing at least one H or I impulse class motor. Cluster or staged models used for certification may not contain over 640.00 Newton seconds total impulse. Single use, reloadable, or hybrid technology motors are permitted. The modeler must assemble the reloadable motor, if used, in the presence of a certification team member.

2. No written examination is required.

3. Certification at this level permits single or multiple motor rocket flights with motors having a maximum total impulse of 640.00 Newton seconds.
Read that whole page. It'll only take you 10 minutes and there is some good stuff on there.

-DAllen
 

delta22

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One last question then I am going to start reading up on this stuff. Can I use a G motor for a Lvl one flight or is it just H and I? Just asking because I have been looking at what kit to buy and it would be bad if I bought one with the wrong mount :p
DAllen is exactly correct.

However, it is convenient and economical to build a L1 rocket that can be safely flown on a G, as they are cheaper and less regulated. Would also let you fly more often, including practice flights with the rocket before the cert attempt.

If the rocket is under 2.5 lbs flight weight, most G's will launch them well. The 3" and 4" LOC Precision kits are popular choices to get started with HPR.

For a motor mount in a L1 rocket, 38mm is the way to go. Many 38mm engines available, and can use a 29-38mm adapter for 29mm engines. I've got three of these adapters because I do this all the time.

Very cheap 29mm engines and reloads available at Hobbylinc or Joe Pilot.
 
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bsexton

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Lots of good advice already given. The only thing I would emphasize is try to find an NAR or TRA club near you that flies high power rockets and go spend a day watching and asking questions.
 

MarkM

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You don't NEED electronics for 2nd level, either. Rocketry has gotten so esoteric and expensive with the one-upmanship promoted by some rocketry sites that I have seen people try over and over, failure after failure, to get their 2nd level cert when just using the motor well delay ejection would most likely have gotten the task done on the first try.

Don't let the pressure of what others have done get in the way of your cert, get it done THEN move on to getting the electronics stuff down for your 3rd level cert.

IMHO:)
I totally agree with these statements. I did both my L1 and L2 using motor ejection. Then, after getting L2 "the easy way" moved to altimeter flying and larger motors. Now, most of my flying is using altimeters, but that's with lots of experience AFTER certifications. Others strive for a certain accomplish factor with each their certs. To each his own. I felt more along the lines of "get it done" then move forward with more the complicated stuff.

The key is to have fun doing it - however you do it!
 

Viperfixr

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I would get a LOC Warlock or I-ROC and do the L1 and L2 certifications with Pro38 motors (because of the adjustable ejection delay) and utilizing motor ejection. Simple, easy, as dummy proof as it can be made to be. I think the L1 flight could be around 1k, and L2 under 3k AGL.

That said, I did my Level 1 with a BSD 38 Special (motor ejection), and I am attempting my L2 next weekend with the same rocket now modified for dual deployment. The DD is a level of complication that is avoidable (in my opinion) for L2 and below, unless you're really bent on doing it that way. Unfortunately, I am so inclined (DD), and in hindsight I would have been an L2 months ago if I had taken the simpler path and then tried DD and such. Just my $0.02 worth...
 

sailmike

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A very good reference is Modern High Power Rocketry 2 by Mark Canepa.
I second this book. It's a good book and could inspire you to try some other things like clusters, two or three stages, and minimum diameter.

I got my level one on a PML Explorer, which was very easy to put together.

Keep the flight low for your level one, because it'll be easier to recover if it doesn't go too far.

Have fun,
Mike
 

Handeman

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My suggestion would be, don't even consider anything concerning L2, just concentrate on the L1 and don't worry about getting a kit that can do both.

The suggestion for building a L1 rocket that can be flown on G motors is a very good one. Most kits have recommended ranges of motors and most recommended ranges cover three sizes. F-H and G-I are poplular. Some will go even further like E-I range or F-J.

If you don't have any experience with reloadable motors, I would highly recommend getting a kit in the F - H range, buy a 29/40-120 Hobbyline case and have fun and learn a lot with the F & G motors. It won't take long at all and you'll be comfortable with the reloads and stepping up to an H or I motor will seem like no big deal.

The suggestion to find the nearest club and fly with them is probably the best suggestion you'll get. We all love talking about our latest projects and at the club launches you'll find a lot of experienced fliers that will only be too happy to pass on their knowledge and experience, especially if you're willing to sit and listen to a few old war storys along the way.
 

redsox15

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I have been doing some more research and have found that some H motors come in 29mm as well as 38mm. Am I better off getting a rocket that just holds 29mm or get a rocket that can fly 38s and get an adapter so I can fly 29s as well. So many choices!! :p
 

hognutz63

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You can always adapt down, but you can't adapt up.
 

DAllen

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I have been doing some more research and have found that some H motors come in 29mm as well as 38mm. Am I better off getting a rocket that just holds 29mm or get a rocket that can fly 38s and get an adapter so I can fly 29s as well. So many choices!! :p
Just look at all the coolio motors you can get here:

http://www.amwprox.com/content/view/58/84/

Just look at all that stuff in the 38mm size. That alone should convince you to go the 38mm route. :D Not to mention all the cool G and H 38mm loads that everyone else makes.

-DAllen
 

Handeman

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My advice is to always get the largest MMT available. As hognutz63 says, you can always adapt down. The larger size gives you a lot more options.
 

dave carver

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As well as 38mm G through J motors from Aerotech. Plus they have a multitude of loads to fit in each case.
 

bobkrech

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I have been doing some more research and have found that some H motors come in 29mm as well as 38mm. Am I better off getting a rocket that just holds 29mm or get a rocket that can fly 38s and get an adapter so I can fly 29s as well. So many choices!! :p
Redsox15

CMASS is your local rocketry club. We have meetings on the first and third Tuesdays of each month, alternating between Marlboro and Saugus on odd and even months respectively. Stop by and we can answer any questions you might have. Check out the CMASS website for details and directions.

Bob Krech, CMASS Senior Advisor
 

cjl

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Go 38mm. Even if the rocket is fairly light, there are fun motors in the shorter 38mm cases that have very difference characteristics from the 29s, and as stated above, you can always adapt down.
 

bobkrech

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Redsox15

Besides joining NAR or TRA to become high power certified, (CMASS is a NAR club) you also need to have a BATFE explosives permit to purchase a high power rocket motor, or have someone who has a permit purchase the motors and fly under his permit. This is the biggest current impediment to high power certification and why you really need to join your local club.

In general, an L1 rocket should have a 38 mm motor mount and an L2 rocket should have a minimum 54 mm motor mount. You're not going to break any altitude records in Eastern MA if you want to get your rocket back. Due to the coastal breezes, we limit high power rockets using apogee deployment to 2000' to insure an infield recovery at the 300 acre field we rent in Amesbury. A lighter weight 4" or larger basic rocket kit is what you want for your L1 certification rocket as you will want to keep your altitude above ~1000' but below ~1500'. Similarily a 6" or larger lighter weight rocket kit is ideal for a L2 certification rocket in Eastern MA, again to keep the altitude down to a reasonable level.

Bob
 

redsox15

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On the subject of motors...when you buy a reload kit does it come with a motor or is the motor separate from the reload kit?

thanks,
redsox15
 

dave carver

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Unless it's a single use motor you buy the case and fuel seperate. It's pretty rare to find a single use motor, I consider myself lucky to have once burned an I132-14 Aerotech motor, 15 years ago :p
 
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