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Maxi Alpha 3 finishing?

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Mikus

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Does anybody paint their Maxi Alpha 3? Apart from the only thing the kit says to paint, the red nose cone of course.

Paint or no paint? Pros/Cons? :confused:
 

dwmzmm

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Mikus, I had the Maxi-Alpha a while back and painted it with florescent orange
nose cone, all white body tube with two fins dark blue with a blue 1/4" wide
stripe running the length of the body tube. I think there's a picture of it in
Flis-Kits website (NSL - 2004 photo album).
 

Initiator001

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When I built my Maxi-Alpha III in 1984, the only part I painted was the nose cone.

I flew it for many years with D12/E10 motors and retired it after the stuffer tube burned through. :(
 

dwmzmm

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When I built my Maxi-Alpha III in 1984, the only part I painted was the nose cone.

I flew it for many years with D12/E10 motors and retired it after the stuffer tube burned through. :(
My Maxi-Alpha's stuffer tube also suffered a collapse after about six flights
on the E9's, resulting in a partial lawndart on the last launch. I then "refitted"
the entire model by tearing out the old "plumbing" and replacing it with four
LOC BT-50 size tubes (for a four engined 24 mm clustering), and lengthened
the main body tube by adding a Centuri styled baffle ejection system. Flown
twice on the same engines (two D12-7's and two E9-6's), it flew incredibly high on both flights, only to get lost on the second flight when we couldn't find it at NSL - 2006 in McGregor, TX :mad:. I do, however, have the parts
to build another clustered Maxi-Alpha, but just haven't gotten around to it yet (too many build projects to do!!).

Pic below is that last (lost) flight, taken by Tim Sapp of the DARS.

DSC_0534.jpg
 

Pem Tech

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Many, MANY moons ago I picked up a Maxi Alpha from a local hobby shop, when those were still a viable species. At the time it looked and felt so HUGE! Mein Gott, could this thing really fly???
(Funny how our perceptions change.)
Just for giggles I painted it military gray and detailed it out in Soviet markings. It looked awesome roaring off the pad on a D12.
 

Boosterdude

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The Maxi-Alpha's are good flying rockets. The issue with them in my eyes are the plastic fins, and motor mount unit. I built two of them last year and they have performed with no issues. The D12, and E9's give them ok flights, but the E18 or E28 really make them fly like they should. The plastic fins are the issue so I fly mine in warm weather only to give them the best shot at holding up.

I want to build one with some nice basswood fins with no plastic parts other than the nc. It's a nice looking rocket all finished up.

I built them for my two kids, so they wanted special themes as you can tell.



 

shreadvector

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First some clarification:
http://www.oldrocketplans.com/estes/est1321/est1321.htm
http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/nostalgia/77est040.html
http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/catalogs/estes79/79est34.html
http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/catalogs/estes79/79est28.html
In the small (normal BT-50) size, we commonly have the Alpha with balsa fins and Alpha III with plastic fin unit. For the large BT-80 versions, there was the Maxi Alpha with balsa fins and the Maxi Alpha 3 (not "III") with plastic fins held in plastic centering rings. The MA3 was a bit heavier than the MA and this would explain why many folks are not as happy with the performance on a D12 or an E9. The lighter Maxi Alpha performs pretty darned well on an E9-4 motor. Also the fins on the MA3 would pop/break off at the anchor points on the plastic centering rings. A nice epoxy fillet wouold help as this transferrs landing loads to the paper tube between the rings. Of course, that adds more weight, but we now have the ValueRockets 24mm E15 and E30 motors to fly them with. I would suggest the "-7" when using the composite E motors.

Estes really should bring the MA back. It will help them sell thousands of additional D12-3 and E9-4 motors. The MA would be perfect for Michaels.
 
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Mikus

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Estes really should bring the MA back. It will help them sell thousands of additional D12-3 and E9-4 motors. The MA would be perfect for Michaels.
That's a damn good call. :)

I don't believe I will be painting this particular bird then, it sounds like it might not survive too many landings on the hard-packed "Texas Tundra" and if there's anybody who's birds can home in on a patch of asphalt, it's me. :(

I did pickup an Executioner and some upscaled Alpha III decals from Excelsior last year so I think that will be the one to spend the time to finish properly. :cool:
 

rokitflite

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That's a damn good call. :)

I did pickup an Executioner and some upscaled Alpha III decals from Excelsior last year so I think that will be the one to spend the time to finish properly. :cool:
That is a great Idea! I have a "nekkid" Excecutioner here that I now have a paint scheme for!
 

rokitflite

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Darn... I downloaded the decal files and cut the tube to the right length, but the fins are not the right shape... Oh well, I don't care, I wanna fly the poop out of this one anyway. First coat of primer is waiting to be sanded!:D
 

rokitflite

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Thanks Mikus... I had a lot of stuff to do today. Now I'm jumping head first into THIS project!:rolleyes:

Decals done, thanks Ye Olde Rocket Plans!:D

madecals.jpg
 

RoyAtl

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I was out of the hobby temporarily when the Maxi Alpha came around, but when the MA3 came out, I worked with a local craft store chain as their rocketry expert, and I did a lot of demo launches supported by Mary Roberts at Estes. For one of those weekend small town arts and crafts festivals, I was staked with 10-20 MA3's to build AND fly at the event. Whoever recovered the rockets could keep them.

I started at 9 in the morning in my little MALE corner of the booth while the rest of the booth was staffed by and for females discussing needlepoint and decoupage' and were really puzzled by why I was there! At the top of each hour I'd take whatever rockets I had finished out to the 200' square courtyard with an Estes Big Foot launcher (that I'd modified with a power transistor and a heavy duty battery -- no taking chances or wasting time with alkalines!)

Of course, the PA would say what I was about to do, kids would follow me, the crowd would gather, people would shout "Yew gawna sheooot that thang awff??" and other such nonsense (I'd be polite and serious, of course). The "Mighty D" motors would take the MA3s way over the trees but somehow I managed to thread the needle with most of them and only got three snagged irretrievably. Two or three broke fins on landing. I snuck in a flight later on a Composite Dynamics E20. Got that one back too. Or rather, some 8 year old kid did!

Don't know if it increased rocket sales at the craft store or not. But it was a busy day and a lot of fun. I was definitely sick and tired of Maxi Alpha 3's though. Of course, what was the next project Mary Roberts wanted me to do? Build more MA3's for store displays!
 

Mikus

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Thanks Mikus... I had a lot of stuff to do today. Now I'm jumping head first into THIS project!

Decals done, thanks Ye Olde Rocket Plans!
D'oh! That will teach me to reveal my seekret plans too early.... I guess that's a case of premature apogee. :mad:

J/K! ;) Glad somebody thinks that's as cool of a project as I thought it would be. :cool: I'll get around to mine sometime; so many rockets, so little time. :(

Be sure to post pics please.
 

Mikus

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Darn... but the fins are not the right shape...
They're not? Oof I thought those were the right shape for Alpha fins. Or are they not the right shape for MA fins? :confused: Could you point out the difference for me? I really don't see it. :(
 

rokitflite

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D'oh! That will teach me to reveal my seekret plans too early.... I guess that's a case of premature apogee. :mad:

J/K! ;) Glad somebody thinks that's as cool of a project as I thought it would be. I'll get around to mine sometime; so many rockets, so little time. :(

Be sure to post pics please.
I'm sorry Mikus:(... It's just that I've had this Excecutioner lying around since August and I lost all interest in finishing it. When Maxi Alpha was suggested by Fred I said "hmmm?" Then you confirmed the Executioner thought... Don't worry though... If you put more than 2 hours worth of effort into finishing it, it will look better than mine! I went for the quick one day finishing job and I intend to fly it A LOT. It was also a TERRIBLE quality BT-80! The fins are longer along the root edge and are not swept back as far so it is going to look a little shorter. Its painted all white now, if I can stay up til 2AM I'll put the red on before I go to bed.
 

rokitflite

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Did I mention how much I love Plastikote Spot Filler And Primer and old formula Krylon???

After 10 hours from the first shot of primer hitting it, here she is! I'm going to wait til tomorrow to put the decals on though:rolleyes:.

DSCN5481.jpg


DSCN5483.jpg
 

rokitflite

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Looks great!

What took you so long? :rolleyes:
Oh, sorry. Here. I got up early today so I gave it the decal treatment. Wow... Giant wrap around decals are so fun, quick and easy:rolleyes:. Now for some Future floor polish tomorrow.

DSCN5484.jpg
 

Mikus

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Heh heh. Don't sweat it, I'm just kidding ya. ;)

Looks great!!! You're right about the fins tho, dang it. Well I'm still going to do it someday. :eek:
 

kjohnson

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Nice looking rocket, Scott and a good use for something that was just sitting around your house growing spiderwebs. I hope you will be at the next club launch flying it!
 
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