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gcanroc

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I'm considering returning to the hobby of Model Rocketry after a 42 yr hiatus. :) The last time I flew model rockets I was in the 7th grade and I sure have missed it. My question is: is there a rocket/rockets that can be used to get me reintroduced to the hobby with pontenial for a L1 certification?? Or would you keep the learning stages seperate?? i.e. A rocket for mid-power, a rocket for L1 cert, one for L2 cert...ect, ect. I'm not looking to break any altitude records, just a slow climbing, crowd pleasing fun rocket(s). Any input would be most appricated. See you at the luanch pad.

Geoffrey
 

noffie79

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Welcome back! There are so many rockets to choose from that it would be very hard to pick just one. So, you might as well just buy them all! All joking aside, I know many people have chosen to use one of the Estes Pro Series II builder kits to certify L1. They're a great bargain and can be flown on a variety of motors. I fly mine all the time on F & G class motors. I personally used a LOC IV for my L1, but as I said, there are just so many to choose from. Estes, LOC Precision, Madcow, Wildman and many others have tons of kits that can be used for mid power and flown on a lower budget yet also be used to certify. Happy shopping, and again, welcome back!
 

Bat-mite

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There are many such rockets. Some are designed for MPR, but can be flow HPR with slight modifications. Others are simply designed for a particular motor diameter, and then you can choose to put an MPR or HPR motor in it.

The trick is to get an accurate assessment of the built weight, and see how much thrust you need to get it safely off the pad. Once you know the minimum safe thrust, you can look for F, G, H and I motors that do the trick.

Caveat: some F and G motors require high power certification and an FAA waiver to purchase and fly, so be sure that the minimum safe thrust falls under 80 Newtons if you want to use MPR motors.
 

davdue

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A good place to look and see what is available now is Apogee Rocketry (https://www.apogeerockets.com/). Not only do they have lots of model rockets they have MPR & HPR rocket kits for sale. They also are an excellent resource for information with their how to guides which are both written and video. Welcome back. I did the same thing about 10 years ago and flew quite a few MPR rockets until I jumped into HPR and now have my L1 & L2 certs and have attempted L3 once. I plan on a new attempt sometime next year.

Another place to find information is to locate a rocket club nearby. I have learned a lot from other guys in the Kloudbusters Rocket Club. There are two national/international rocket groups. They are Tripoli & NAR. Kloudbusters is a Tripoli prefecture (club). I don't know much about NAR other than they are primarily a club that supports the use of commercially purchased motors rather than experimental motors that rocketeers build on their own. Tripoli's website is: www.tripoli.org and NAR is: www.NAR.org. You can locate local clubs on those websites.
 
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gcanroc

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I see a lot of posts condoning the Estes Ventris, and I've had my share of Estes rockets when I was young. I fly r/c planes and I know from experience that a worth of knowledge can be found by going to a "flying field". I'm sure the same can be said of a "launch field". I've learned through my own life experiences that "an awful lot of time and money" can be saved by listening to advice from those who have gone before me. :wink:

G
 

samb

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Welcome back. My opinion on this frequently asked question is that Level 1 is a threshold that is best served with a purpose built high power rocket. However, as has already been pointed out, many TRFers have used models in the Estes PSII series for successful L1 flights. So I'm going to suggest you look at the Estes Der Mega Red Max as a good hybrid mid/high flyer.

mega der red max.png

Length: 40 in. (101.6 cm)
Diameter: 4 in. (10.2 cm)
Estimated Weight: 31 oz. (878.9 g)

http://www.estesrockets.com/rockets/pro-series/rockets/009705-pro-series-iitmmega-der-red-maxtm

Alternatively some of the LOC 4" diameter models in the same weight range would be good choices.

http://locprecision.com/category/rocket-information/
 
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samb

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One place where I found extremely helpful information when I returned to the hobby in '06 was info-central. Sadly now an orphaned site, it can still be accessed through the magic of the Wayback Machine.

https://web.archive.org/web/20120519163039/http://www.info-central.org/?article=230

https://web.archive.org/web/20120519162657/http://www.info-central.org/?article=121

Another great resource are the outstanding series of how-to videos created by John Coker. Here is his 'Choosing Motors' offering: http://www.jcrocket.com/choosing-motors.shtml

Tim Van Milligan's Apogee Rockets is a great vendor and source of many educational videos and the Peak of Flight newsletter: https://apogeerockets.com/education/...sletter132.pdf

Hope this helps.
 
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Nytrunner

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There's an Estes online-only kit called the Scion. Its basically the simpler parts of their discontinued Leviathan (my favorite PSII rocket) for 60% the price. Its also a great way to learn to slot a tube. Since its longer than the original Leviathan, I think it's well suited for some 29mm Hi-power motors as long as you use epoxy for the joints. May even expand it to dual-deployment if you wish to go that route (HPR motors will send it pretty high, so DD may be pretty useful for getting it back. Or a Jolly Logic chute release).

Currently, I bought a Scion just so I could turn it back into a Leviathan :cool:
 

Fred Garvin

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I just finished my Scion. It is just a repurposed Leviathan with an extra body tube. Even came with the 4 fin pack so I have an extra Levi fin in my scrap pile. I already have 1 Levi built, and 2 unopened kits in the build pile.

IMG_1279.jpg
 

Zeus-cat

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Where are you? There may be a club near you that can help.
 

gcanroc

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I live in the "biggest little state in the union". aka Rhode Island. They fly the second Saturday of each month, where as I work normally on Saturdays. Other than the launch field, do rocket clubs by chance have meeting nights??
 

Rex R

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I know that Woosh does and so I would guess other clubs do as well. easyist course is simply ask. I would suggest that one build one or two low power birds just to 'knock the rust off the ole rocket building skills'. one problem with rockets that straddle the line betwixt mid and HPR is you either get a rocket that flies well on Fs & Gs and gets lost on anything bigger or, a bird that can't fly on anything smaller than a G80 but does well on small H motors. examples the Aerotech 'G-force' or the Estes mega red max(both do well on H motors). I would suggest that for the most part keeping the two separate.
Rex
 

BDB

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I'm in RI too! We just had a great launch last weekend, and we'll probably fly again in December, assuming the weather cooperates: www.rimra.org.

The only thing to consider when choosing a kit for L1 is the low ceiling at the URI field. You will need to keep it under 2,500 ft, so most PSII kits with an H motor are out, the exception being the Mega Der Red Max. So you may want to look into some 3" or 4" diameter kits at Madcow, Wildman or Binder Design. You should also download OpenRocket, so you can simulate the flights of the kits/motors you are interested in.

The URI field is really nice even though the low ceiling sucks, but the other good thing about Lil' Rhody is that were are pretty close to several other clubs. It's < 2 hrs to CMASS and CATO. And ~ 2 hrs to MMMSC in Berwick, Maine. They have a gorgeous field with a ceiling of 10,000 ft. It's the closest thing to Rocket Heaven in New England.
 

gcanroc

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I'm in RI too! We just had a great launch last weekend, and we'll probably fly again in December, assuming the weather cooperates: www.rimra.org.

The only thing to consider when choosing a kit for L1 is the low ceiling at the URI field. You will need to keep it under 2,500 ft, so most PSII kits with an H motor are out, the exception being the Mega Der Red Max. So you may want to look into some 3" or 4" diameter kits at Madcow, Wildman or Binder Design. You should also download OpenRocket, so you can simulate the flights of the kits/motors you are interested in.

The URI field is really nice even though the low ceiling sucks, but the other good thing about Lil' Rhody is that were are pretty close to several other clubs. It's < 2 hrs to CMASS and CATO. And ~ 2 hrs to MMMSC in Berwick, Maine. They have a gorgeous field with a ceiling of 10,000 ft. It's the closest thing to Rocket Heaven in New England.
My brother invited me to RI Comic Con. Does RIMRA meet at any times other then launch days??
 

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new2hpr

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What the consensus on this rocket:

http://shop.locprecision.com/product.sc?productId=99&categoryId=13

LOC Graduator

Is this a entry level HPR or just a really good MPR?

Geoff
The graduator is a great transition rocket. I'd also recommend the Loc-IV, especially if you want low/slow. My son has flown his on as little as an F60 (around 1000ft), and I wouldn't hesitate to put a mid-size I in it, but our usual launch ceiling is 20k to 30k so no worries about me EVER breaking that.
-Ken
 

Danh

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What the consensus on this rocket:

http://shop.locprecision.com/product.sc?productId=99&categoryId=13

LOC Graduator

Is this a entry level HPR or just a really good MPR?

Geoff
All loc rockets are good rockets and are capable of high power motors . I personally would get something with or modify it to a 38mm mount you can always reduce down to 29/or 24 mm.

You way want to wait until next Friday to make a purchase you could save some money or get more rockets for your money . There is a thread with a list of what vendors are having sales next Friday.
 

BDB

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My brother invited me to RI Comic Con. Does RIMRA meet at any times other then launch days??
I heard that Comic Con was nuts! My wife and kids were in Providence on Saturday and said there were lots of middle aged people walking around downtown in tights.

Anyway, we discussed having a meeting or two over the winter, when it's too cold to launch, but noting has been planned just yet. PM me your name and email. I'll get you on the RIMRA email list.
 

tomsteve

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All loc rockets are good rockets and are capable of high power motors . I personally would get something with or modify it to a 38mm mount you can always reduce down to 29/or 24 mm.
I found myself doing that on quite a few rockets.

another loc kit that would be a good purchase, after youre L1 and addicted, is the mini magg. put a 54mm motor mount in it. when you are ready for L2, its easy to get another length of body tube to lengthen the rocket.
 

gcanroc

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I'm now thinking along the lines of the LOC IV. "Big and burly". It looks like there are plenty "build" tips on the internet. I thought it would be a good mid power rocket that would also help get my C1 by the end of next season. it seems that the Rhode Island rocket club has only 2500' ceiling. See BDB's post #13 above.

Geoff
 

noffie79

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The LOC IV on a small H for L1 will stay well below that 2500'
 

OverTheTop

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There are some other options for non fiberglass kits besides loc too.
http://www.binderdesign.com/
http://www.macperformancerocketry.com/
I certified L1 & L2 with a Binder Design Velociraptor. Big, impressive rocket that looks and flies great. The L1 (I211) was done with a shortened configuration and motor eject. L2 (K550) full electronic dual deploy (with motor backup for apogee).
DSC01643.JPG PostFlightresize.jpg

You may find the cardboard airframe easier to work with than fiberglass. There is a bit of work in the fin area (split fins, and "claw" fins) but I think it was worth the extra effort. As you progress and your skills improve you might make the leap to f/g for your next rocket.
 

noffie79

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Noffie7...something tells me, the LOC IV has been berry berry good to you.:wink:
Oh, it has! I'm partial to it because it was my L1. But there's absolutely nothing wrong with dozens upon dozens of other rockets. I have a 2.6" Madcow fiberglass Black Brant II. It's a rocket that could be easily used to get L1 certified. It goes a lot higher than the LOC IV on the same motors. So it really is all about what you want and what kind of flights you're looking for.
 

gcanroc

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Basically "low and slow":) with growth potential and possibly DD down the road. I'd rather not try for L1 and L2 on the same rocket. My only concern with the LOC kits are the plywood fins. Is a kit with G10 fins in a low and slow category?? My budget is less then $150 for my first rocket.

Geoff
 

BDB

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If you are concerned about durability, plywood fins are really strong. I wouldn't worry to much about them for L1 or L2 flying.

Have you looked at the MadCow kits that are on sale right now? They might work well. My friend just got his L1 at RIMRA with a 3" Twitch. It flew to ~1400 ft with a H133 motor. He flew it the previous week on a some kind of a G motor.
 

noffie79

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Plywood fins are fine. My L2 was a Madcow PAC-3, with plywood fins. There are a lot of choices under $150!
 

OverTheTop

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The Velociraptor has plywood fins. Plywood is a great composite material! It doesn't make you itch like fiberglass.
 
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