# Minuteman 3 scale scratch build

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#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Well guys Im going to make a start on this thread with some some general ideas and chime in any time with advice or suggestions Im trying to use model rockets by Timothy Van Milligan. Bought it last year so its time to get some use out of it. Its a great book so dont judge it by what i do for goodness sake Following the suggestted steps for a scale build I selected the Minuteman 3.
I gathered some scale data here
https://www.captainswoop.com/icbm/msls.html
Im going to use a quad 18mm power plant to simulate the configuration of the real one in a BT80 body tube. I figure the scale to be 1/25 by using 2.6 inches for the BT80 body tube and 66 inches or 5.5 feet for the base diameter of the real rocket. Math is not my long suit but here goes. Using the scale of 1/25 then the overall length should be 28.75 inches long. I seem to be missing from my drawing the diameter of the upperstage so I will try to figure that out tommorrow
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Thanks for the info I found the data on another part of the good captains websiteDid a little more math based on scale data. The diameter is expressed as 4.33 feet so my second stage should be about two inches in diameter. That means a BT70 upperstage. Not perfect but I have a pile of stock parts and without a micrometer whos going to notice Next I will try to figure out transitions and a nose cone. Im tempted by plastic as its so easy to add weight to
Cheers
fred

#### SpaceAXEplorer

##### Well-Known Member
Thanks for the link(s) I've been saving up data on the Minutemen to do a build of my own (non-rocketry). Every little bit helps.

Eric

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Thanks for the link(s) I've been saving up data on the Minutemen to do a build of my own (non-rocketry). Every little bit helps.

Eric

No problem Eric I am learning as I go. I usually just kitbash so this is new ground to me
Cheers
Fred

#### kjohnson

##### mox nix
One of the coolest things in Peter Alway's Art of Scale Modeling book is the tube ratio chart. If you can figure out the ratio between your two tube diameters, this chart will show you all the commercial tubes that fall around that ratio so you can chose a scale based on that.

I don't know if anyone else has put something like that together somewhere else, and AoSM is long out of print and hard to find, but it's really great tool for when you start doing scratch builds and don't want to make your own tubes.

kj

Thanks for the info I found the data on another part of the good captains websiteDid a little more math based on scale data. The diameter is expressed as 4.33 feet so my second stage should be about two inches in diameter. That means a BT70 upperstage. Not perfect but I have a pile of stock parts and without a micrometer whos going to notice Next I will try to figure out transitions and a nose cone. Im tempted by plastic as its so easy to add weight to
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
One of the coolest things in Peter Alway's Art of Scale Modeling book is the tube ratio chart. If you can figure out the ratio between your two tube diameters, this chart will show you all the commercial tubes that fall around that ratio so you can chose a scale based on that.

I don't know if anyone else has put something like that together somewhere else, and AoSM is long out of print and hard to find, but it's really great tool for when you start doing scratch builds and don't want to make your own tubes.

kj

Im pretty comfortale with the tube selection and power plant. The size and shape of the fins will be the next puzzler and how mauch weight to put in the nose if any to balance it. I also need to figure out how to attach the BT70 to the bt80? I will use a paper shroud for the midsection as EMRR has a good calc for that and the chute size. I apreciate your interest in my project and i hope you continue to follow it and offer your sdvice. I apreciate it
Cheers
fred

#### dedleytedley

##### Well-Known Member
Cool project Fred! You'll want to use two BT-70-BT-80 rings to place the 70 within 80. The smaller tube should be about three inches into the larger tube. Four 18mm should give a fast exciting boost. Sunward sells a kit the Eruption that has four Canted 18mm in a BT-70. Using canted motors will increase the stability of the rocket reducing the fin area required. Ted

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Cool project Fred! You'll want to use two BT-70-BT-80 rings to place the 70 within 80. The smaller tube should be about three inches into the larger tube. Four 18mm should give a fast exciting boost. Sunward sells a kit the Eruption that has four Canted 18mm in a BT-70. Using canted motors will increase the stability of the rocket reducing the fin area required. Ted
Good advice Im going with straight motors though as thats the mount I have. Means I still have to figure the fins though
The cone I want to use is an about an inch to long maybe for scale but that depends on how much goes into the tube.
https://www.semroc.com/Store/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=2146
Found those rings sweet
https://www.semroc.com/Store/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=1902
Im think A transition may save a bit of work with paper as well and i could use it for the recovery and attach the nose
https://www.semroc.com/Store/Scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=915
This is getting very interesting. Semroc sure has a great selection of stuff
Cheers
fred

#### luke strawwalker

##### Well-Known Member
Good advice Im going with straight motors though as thats the mount I have. Means I still have to figure the fins though
The cone I want to use is an about an inch to long maybe for scale but that depends on how much goes into the tube.
https://www.semroc.com/Store/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=2146
Found those rings sweet
https://www.semroc.com/Store/scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=1902
Im think A transition may save a bit of work with paper as well and i could use it for the recovery and attach the nose
https://www.semroc.com/Store/Scripts/prodView.asp?idproduct=915
This is getting very interesting. Semroc sure has a great selection of stuff
Cheers
fred

Course you could always turn the cone down an inch by chucking it in a drill and putting some sandpaper to it, like I did the transition for my 1/100 Ares I scratchbuild over in the archives... It's not the best solution, but it works, and it's easier than making a cone from scratch from a block of balsa...

Later and good luck! OL JR

#### Marlin523

##### Well-Known Member
Interesting project. If you go with BT-70 and BT-80, what lengths will they be?

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Course you could always turn the cone down an inch by chucking it in a drill and putting some sandpaper to it, like I did the transition for my 1/100 Ares I scratchbuild over in the archives... It's not the best solution, but it works, and it's easier than making a cone from scratch from a block of balsa...

Later and good luck! OL JR

I apreciate the suggestion but the extra inch vs what I would do to the cone is not worthwhile Oh well sport scale here we come
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Interesting project. If you go with BT-70 and BT-80, what lengths will they be?

Given the extra big nosecone 7.5 inches for BT70 10.37 for BT80. The is will allow a 2 inch transition and a seven inch nose cone aproximately.
Cheers
fred

fins?

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member

Gotta have them to make it stable as I seem to have left my manual for gymballing LPR engines somewhere lol. They will be clear plastic to minimise the effect on the appearance
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Well I orderred the bits and bobs from Semroc for my minuteman today
Here's the list
BNC-70AJ Balsa Nose Cone BT-70 4.25" Ogive
2 BT-70 Body Tube BT-70 18.0" Long
Centering Ring BT-70 to BT-80 (Pkg of 6)
1 TA-7080 Tube Adapter BT-70 to BT-80
Im really excited about orderring this stuff as Ive heard SEMROC service is the best and maybe my little bit of coin will help cheer Carl. I figure the next thing will be a detailled scale drawing. next its fin city and how much do I need. Im thinking I will build them right into the rocket possibly attaching them right to a stuffer tube assembly buts all the skull sweat i have availible for now
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Okay I got my bits and bobs from SEMROC. They got my stuff up here is a very reasonable amount of time for a great price including price My nosecone is not to scale but is going to be 10.8 cm long. Should be more then that but thats as close as i could get in my budget. Upper stage will be 36.16 cm long to compensate for short nose and transition. The transition will be 5.5 cm long and the first stage will 36.72 cm long. The raceway on the outside will be 62.48 cm long. I will attch the chute to the transition. Next I need to figure the fins again I also need to figure out how big a chute
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Well I've still gotta build a tunel and fins but it's shaping up My hobby area is kindly described as somewhat chaotic.
Cheers
Fred

#### mperdue

##### Well-Known Member
Ive seen a lot of bone white minuteman 3's in photos as gate guards or displays. Does this photo show what one looked like when they had it in a silo?
https://www.nasm.si.edu/collections/artifact.cfm?id=A19761115000
Cheers
fred

Great build. The white missiles were for display. The one in the silo look like this https://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/usa/icbm/us_nuke_minuteman3_01.jpg.

There were a normally differences in the paint scheme from ones missile to another but tha photo is close to the "standard" look.

FWIW, I worked on Minuteman III when I was in the USAF.

Mario

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Hey Mario thanks for the picture What colour from the model master lineup of spray cans do you think I should use? Working on the real missile must have been interesting work. I toured a LF in North Dakota and a silo trainer at ellesworth which is as close as I got. Kind of means I should pay attention to your suggestions lol I apreciate your help
Cheers
Fred

#### mperdue

##### Well-Known Member
Hey Mario thanks for the picture What colour from the model master lineup of spray cans do you think I should use? Working on the real missile must have been interesting work. I toured a LF in North Dakota and a silo trainer at ellesworth which is as close as I got. Kind of means I should pay attention to your suggestions lol I apreciate your help
Cheers
Fred

Colors varied with the individual missile. The USAF only paints for protection, not for cosmetics. The white areas were flat white. The dark areas were either flat black or flat dark olive drab. The light area is a difficult color to match. It's a flat yellow zinc chromate primer with a bit of a green tint. I've never seen an exact match for it anywhere but it could be mixed pretty easily.

FWIW, I was stationed at Grand Forks AFB in North Dakota.

##### Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Do you have clear plastic fins for this model?

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Colors varied with the individual missile. The USAF only paints for protection, not for cosmetics. The white areas were flat white. The dark areas were either flat black or flat dark olive drab. The light area is a difficult color to match. It's a flat yellow zinc chromate primer with a bit of a green tint. I've never seen an exact match for it anywhere but it could be mixed pretty easily.

FWIW, I was stationed at Grand Forks AFB in North Dakota.

It never ceases to amaze me how much firepower is buried in the ground so close to the border. Saw lots of active silos on my last vacation as well. I've got an airbrush coming so a mixing we will go It maymake you laugh but Im going to swing test it I'm a bit of a dinosaur that way.
Cheers
fred

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
Do you have clear plastic fins for this model?

Not yet but Im going to make them and attch them after painting
Cheers
fred

#### dpan

##### New Member
Colors varied with the individual missile. The USAF only paints for protection, not for cosmetics. The white areas were flat white. The dark areas were either flat black or flat dark olive drab. The light area is a difficult color to match. It's a flat yellow zinc chromate primer with a bit of a green tint. I've never seen an exact match for it anywhere but it could be mixed pretty easily.

FWIW, I was stationed at Grand Forks AFB in North Dakota.

I just found this thread. Great topic.

I was the officer in charge of the team training branch at the 91 SMW, Minot AFB, ND about 25 years ago. The missiles we had (MM IIIs) were not the color of that FAS picture. I believe that pic was taken at the USAF Museum at Wright Patterson AFB, OH. All the missiles we had in the silos had the following color scheme - 1st stage - kind of glossy green/lime green with the name "Thiokol" in the company's script logo going down the length of the stage (in red). Second and third stages were a more olive drab type of paint. All the stages had white on brown rectangular stencils with the word "LOADED" on them painted horizontally. The post-boost vehicle and guidance unit (the Post-Boost Control System) were painted white. The Re-entry system (nose cone) shell was bare metal / aluminum. That's about it. I spent enough time inside the LFs (I was an MMT officer) to have had that missile permanently planted in my brain

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
I just found this thread. Great topic.

I was the officer in charge of the team training branch at the 91 SMW, Minot AFB, ND about 25 years ago. The missiles we had (MM IIIs) were not the color of that FAS picture. I believe that pic was taken at the USAF Museum at Wright Patterson AFB, OH. All the missiles we had in the silos had the following color scheme - 1st stage - kind of glossy green/lime green with the name "Thiokol" in the company's script logo going down the length of the stage (in red). Second and third stages were a more olive drab type of paint. All the stages had white on brown rectangular stencils with the word "LOADED" on them painted horizontally. The post-boost vehicle and guidance unit (the Post-Boost Control System) were painted white. The Re-entry system (nose cone) shell was bare metal / aluminum. That's about it. I spent enough time inside the LFs (I was an MMT officer) to have had that missile permanently planted in my brain

Thanks Its very cool talking to folks who were there as it were . Have you got a picture? Nothing that would require you to be imprisoned anyway
Cheers
fred

#### dpan

##### New Member
Thanks Its very cool talking to folks who were there as it were . Have you got a picture? Nothing that would require you to be imprisoned anyway
Cheers
fred

I just did a quick image search on Google. Here are a few interesting pics:

https://i63.photobucket.com/albums/h146/boeing722/MMII.jpg

That's of a MM II, but the paint scheme is pretty accurate. Though I'm more used to a lighter shade of green on the first stage with the Thiokol logo (https://www.ask.com/wiki/Thiokol).

This shot of a MMIII inside the LF has a good look at the PBCS and the RS shell. (https://www.corbisimages.com/Enlargement/UG004029.html)

This one of the MMIII in the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum is pretty accurate for the first stage color scheme. (https://www.flickr.com/photos/nostri-imago/3095747545/) Though I've never seen an operation missile with that Re-entry System paint scheme. It's always the bare metal one seen previously.

Hope that helps.

#### mperdue

##### Well-Known Member
It's interesting to see how the paint schemes changed over the years. The scheme I referenced was accurate for the missiles I worked on in the mid 1970s.

#### Fred22

##### Well-Known Member
It's interesting to see how the paint schemes changed over the years. The scheme I referenced was accurate for the missiles I worked on in the mid 1970s.

With the military it's usually a different shade of green
Cheers
fred

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