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Well-Known Member
Jan 18, 2009
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Thinking lately about micromaxx.... Went to Totally Tubular today and their MMX tubes are way too expensive, $1.50 each. Just a little bit ago, I remembered ASP, went there, 75c a tube. Wow. Time to do some downscaling. I'm planning on making several versions of my G-Force, though most of the downscales will prolly have thicker fins than the original :rolleyes:

Are there any quirks to scratchbuilding micros? I'm gonna buy a kit or 2 (micromaxx and i dunno, an egglofter?) from ASP along with some parts. Haven't worked out the scale factors yet, though the MM GF should be around 6" or so.
When you get the ASP kits you will see that they use styrene
plastic for their fins. This type of plastic is used for RailRoad
scale modeling and can be found at may hobby stores and in
many thicknesses .01, .015, .02, .03, .04 ... inches and can be
very handy is scaling MM rockets. The difficulty in dealing with
plastic to paper bonds is the problem. Thick CA will be your
friend. If you are just looking for scale models, styrene also
comes in telescoping tube sizes and bonds well plastic to plastic.

Best of Luck.
Micromiester was just saying that tottaly tubular has a pile of sizes for mmx tubes (I don't know about prices) . Useful if doing scale stuff....

I just got some tubes from ASP, and they are 65 cents a piece if you buy 3..I bought a mmx kit from them at NARAM 45 and it was really cool, with decent decals too. I aggree thick CA would be a good bet with the styrene fins.
Styrene to paper joints are OK with med and thick CA, however I reinforce this joint with a very thin fillet of Epoxy that is then sanded smooth. CA becomes brittle very quickly, It's fine if you don't plan on keeping the model around for any length of time. Scale models and Good Downscales deserve a little flexibility at those pressure points joints. Don't feel obliged to use the styrene fins material, it is very nice for quick finishing. 3/64 3 ply aircraft plwood, 1/32" Basswood and even 1/32" balsa can be used for fins. .030" clear Lexan Polycarbonate make great clear fins. these also require some special adhesives attachments, Weld-on 16 is best, but CA/epoxy can work.
Over the last couple years I've become very pleased with the overall finished size and empty weight of micro downscale models and ture scale models base on T3 (.375" OD ) bodies, they give a little easier assemble of miniture parts while not adding the extra weight added by T4 (10.5mm) or T%-(BT-5) size models.

Totally Tubulars prices are based on quantity. 1-10, 1-.25 etc. If you buy a 50 mixed tubes you'll get them for the 50 lot price each. I usually spirng for 100 tubes total to get the very best pricing. another thought is to combine an order with a few friends or within the your club. My last 100 batch of T2+ tubes contained foil lined heavy wall BT-50's, T2, T3, T4 , T4+ T5, T5+ It doesn't take long to collect a large enough order to make the tubes .50 or less. Don't to mention die cut Fibre centering rings for T2+ to T3, T4 and T5 tubes, and other very useful items like .030 and .050 carbon fibre rods that can be used for launchrods, spars, landing gears and on and on. If you buy more then the exact amount of material you need for each project Either ASP or Totally Tubular will help hold the cost per model project down. Course I do stock more junk than the average model builder, I just like having what I need , to build anything I want, when I want;)
Yeah, first thing i found was TT and though they have one heckuva selection, their prices are outrageous compared to ASP's. Flat broke right now, will have money after Christmas though so I can build some of these :cool:
-> John, we replied at the same time.

They have 50C for 50 tubes? DO they have a more current catalog than 07/03? IF so, I'm interested. Id rather buy tubes for 75C each, or 65c for 3. I don't need 50-100 of em, so ASP has better prices for little orders.

Y'know, you can solve a lot of problems by printing out fins on cardstock or paper and using cardboard for the fins. They glue with white glue just like balsa, and you can pre-print the graphics on them so no painting or decals required. As an example, I've attached a mmx Red Max made from a BT-5, with a Quark nose cone and cardboard fins. I used presentation paper for the outer layer of the fins and the body tube wrap, so the only think to paint is the nose cone. I used cardstock for the motor tube and the centering rings. This method works really great, and given that Estes alone has three different PNC-50 cones, there's a lot of variation you can do right there. (The mosquito nose cone works great for mmx berthas, goonies and fat boys, and the 220-Swift nose is pretty close to the Alpha nose). Oh, and I also roll my launch lugs out of paper as well.

And for you rocsim-ers out there, I use thin cardboard about like comes on cereal boxes that I get with my comics orders. The thickness is about .053", so two layers of cardstock makes the fins .063", or two layers of presentation paper makes them about .058".

BTW, I thought I'd give you guys a head start - here is a pdf file containing five sets each MMX motor mounts, BT-5 to MMX centering rings (designed to match up with the cardstock motor mounts included), and some motor blocks. To make the motor blocks, cut out the smallest piece, roll it into a circle and tape the ends together inside. Curl the second piece and glue it around the outside of the first, then repeat with the third. Each time, be sure to glue put the seam 180 degrees around from the previous seam so the block is solid (and not held together by a piece of tape!). Be sure to print on 110# cardstock (you can get that at any Walmart).

Cardstock and fibreboards are fine for micro models, BT-5 however makes for some heavy low flying models. Preprinted fins and body wraps are really good with laser or dryfilm (Alps) printers but don't last to long if left uncoated after printing or done on inkjets. make sure you clear coat your cardstock models before you even cut our the parts. Finger prints don't erase worth a darn;)
The attached T-3 bodied ESS Raven is nearly all Cardstock intakes, wing ducts, T-Tail and scoop, with .020" styrene main wing and vertical tail member. this model would be way to heavy to fly in BT-5, it was over 20grams build in T4 (10.5mm) tubing. Estes PNC-5V is great for some models like the missile toe or mosquitos which are wonderful flyer's on MM-II motors.
When designing or downscaleing Micros try to keep in mind you really want to the empty with w/ streamer under 10grams if at all possible for the best flight performance. 10 about 14 grams are marginal altitude flyers 14 to 19grams will make 10 to 15 feet. anything over 20grams will not leave the rod:
Hope this helps(
Better yet is to preprint the entire model body shourd, Fins canopies on #110 cardstock and clear coat before cutting. This method works great for downscale models like the old Centuri Point or Vulcan. Pdf files for both are in the files section of the micro-maxx yahoo group. I can't seem to get my pdf's under the 100kb to post here so i'll add a 55dpi jpeg so you can see what were talking about.
Oh, DUH-huhhhh me! I didn't notice the lengths of TT vs ASP, I will definitely be ordering from Totally Tubular. I need to work on the scaling for this rocket.

Oh, DUH-huhhhh me! I didn't notice the lengths of TT vs ASP

Yea...I was wondering why you were put off by $1.50 for a 34" tube!

You can make a LOT of MMX models from a 34" length!;)