MADCOW Jayhawk AQM-37A finally finished

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AfterBurners

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Well I finally finished my MADCOW Jayhawk AQM-37A. Just a shout to Mike for manufacturer a fun and challenging kit to build. For my first time building this kit I'm pretty satisfied. It's definitely going to be a flyer, so most of the mistakes I made cosmetically with the kit really aren't that concerning, but I'll point them for the sake of just things I could do better next time.

If I decide on building this kit again, when it comes around to mounting the wings and winglets I will do all the sealing, sanding and primer before mounting them. It's just easier to sand with the grain of the wood when they are off the rocket.

I will make sure not to wet sand the primer pieces and wait until after I have paint the rocket. Why? The wood grain will laminate and raise and then there's additional sanding involved, which I had to do on this kit.

Painting the top coat was challenging trying to keep it even as having that "wet look" I would paint one side and it would look great, but the other side would have dry spots or "over spray" That's when I decided to shoot several layers of clear coat and wet sand the entire kit including the nose cone.

I used the decals that came with the kit. A few times I wasn't careful enough and torn some of the decals, but managed to slide them back into place without much noticed. I think I got about 85% of the details in the proper place. I wasn't sure where some of them went and when I did find a real Jayhawk on the Internet I couldn't make out the placement, so it is what it is.

Under fluorescent light you can still see some sanding scratches that I couldn't polish out, but like I said this will be a flyer so I'm sure it will get beat up on the landings.

BTW - I started sanding the body with 800 and then 2000. Maybe I should also used 1000 and then maybe 2000? It had some dry areas so I needed something with a little cut. Next one will be much better.

Pictured is the MADCOW Nomex blanket along with a 24"Fruity Chute (TARC) I might go with a 30" Fruity chute? I still need to run the numbers. I 'm really not a big fan of para-sheets for obvious reasons. I need this to come down without the swinging motion.

Overall I would rate my building skills on this as a 7 at best. Still plenty of room for improvement, but not bad for my first time building this kit.
 
That's a lot of work for something you're going to shoot down ;)


That is excellent.
 
Bring it down slow, those winglets bear a lot of stress when they hit the ground. Maybe a chute release with a 42-48 inch chute? Not sure what your weight is. I bring my modded 29mm Estes Phoenix down on a 36 inch chute. Loaded, it is 34 ounces. No snapped fins or stress cracks anywhere, but they are ttw fins. Just to give you some idea.
 
Bring it down slow, those winglets bear a lot of stress when they hit the ground. Maybe a chute release with a 42-48 inch chute? Not sure what your weight is. I bring my modded 29mm Estes Phoenix down on a 36 inch chute. Loaded, it is 34 ounces. No snapped fins or stress cracks anywhere, but they are ttw fins. Just to give you some idea.

I think a 30" fruity chute should work. I know most shoot for 20fps but on this I'm thinking maybe 10fps. Plus launches are on desert playa, so it's kinda hard.
 
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