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drelephant

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I have been away from model rocketry for the last 45 years. I was really into it when I was about 10 years old back in the mid 60's. I have just ordered some new stuff from Estes that I had sent to my son in Texas. I will be launching for my grandchildren during Easter vacation. As a child during the Apollo missions to the moon, I remember watching these launches on TV in school. It was really a big deal then. The Saturn rockets were very dramatic launches. Does anyone make rocket engines that can resemble the initially slow takeoff of one of these giants? I think it would be really cool to see a huge flame hitting the blast deflector before slowly easy off the launcher.:smile:
 

Marc_G

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Welcome drelephant,

Indeed I do get your Astro Boy avatar. Nice.

A problem with slow take-offs in model rocketry is that the models need speed for stability. By the time the rocket leaves the launch rod, it needs to be going fast enough so that the air flowing over the fins etc. imparts sufficient stability to keep it pointing up. "Real" rockets use gimballed engines, vectored thrust, gyroscopes, and other active means to keep pointing up. On our relatively puny models these things are not practical so we rely on air flow and stability.

There was a time when some effects engines were made, basically low thrust smoke generators, that could be set off before igniting the main engine. These were discontinued long ago, I believe. Others may have more info...

Welcome aboard and enjoy your upcoming launch!

Marc
 

Gary Byrum

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Wow. If I had a nickel for every time somebody came back to this hobby after a long hiatus...... Welcome back. Oh btw, your Astro Boy ain't got nothin' on this little feller.

Mighty Mouse.jpg
 

samb

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Welcome to the party drelephant. It's actually very hard to get the slow liftoff at the scale of model rockets for the reasons Marc_G mentioned. The ones I can think of that come close would be some of the Art Applewhite saucers with some long burning Aerotech composite propellant motors. May be worth checking out.

https://www.artapplewhite.com/


Must see TV back in the day: Wee Willie Webber's Colorful Cartoon Club - Astro Boy, Ultraman, 8th Man, ...
 

neil_w

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With the larger composite motors you do get to see the starter flame for a second or two before the motor gets going. I always think that's kind of cool.

Oh, and welcome!
 

Bat-mite

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Not the same thing, but sparky motors make for one heckuva sight (and sound)!

Pat-Spark.jpg

You have to be high-power certified to buy and fly them, though.
 

TangoJuliet

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Welcome back! I think you'll find a lot has changed, and yet some things remain the same.
 

Bat-mite

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Oh the sparky is interesting. Where do they come from?
Primarily Aerotech Rocketry and Cesaroni Technology, Inc. But any and all sparky motors require HPR certification, even if they don't meet any other HPR requirement. Something to work your way up to. :wink:

Hey, remember this guy? kimba.jpg
 

Zeus-cat

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Oh the sparky is interesting. Where do they come from?
Sparkies need to be used carefully. I have seen them start a number of fires. Are there any sparkies that are not high power motors or can be flown by someone without a certification?
 

Bat-mite

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Sparkies need to be used carefully. I have seen them start a number of fires. Are there any sparkies that are not high power motors or can be flown by someone without a certification?
No. Even if it meets no other HPR specs, it is still considered HPR due to the sparks.
 

samb

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Oh the sparky is interesting. Where do they come from?
They are interesting. Be prepared. On many fields in Texas you will need firefighting gear handy for possible grass fires. Some clubs discourage their use during dry periods, which can be most of the year. Not everyones cup of kool-aid. Available from online vendors and onsite vendors at club launches. Check sticky threads in the Vendor section of this forum. As Bat-mite said, you need a high power certification from one of the national organizations, NAR or Tripoli, to acquire. My suggestion: you don't need to jump in the deep end all at once.
 

TangoJuliet

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My suggestion: you don't need to jump in the deep end all at once.
Nor should you, or anyone, in my opinion. There's so much to learn along the way from LPR to MPR that'll help you with HPR should you want to reach that level.
 

drelephant

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well we grew up watching the same cartoons. I grew up outside Philadelphia. Was wee willie a national show?
 

drelephant

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Thanks for the welcome. Looking forward to showing the grand kids how to have fun.
 

drelephant

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Yeah, i get it. I have about 500 launches under my belt, but it was 45 years ago. I just thought there may have been some inovations that would add realism to the launch of models ie slow takeoff. Maybe this is something i need to work on myself. Seems like 2 little gyros up near the nose cone spinning in opposite directions would make it really stable.
 

Bat-mite

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Yeah, i get it. I have about 500 launches under my belt, but it was 45 years ago. I just thought there may have been some inovations that would add realism to the launch of models ie slow takeoff. Maybe this is something i need to work on myself. Seems like 2 little gyros up near the nose cone spinning in opposite directions would make it really stable.
The problem there is that even if you could work out the stabilization, you would still need a really slow-burning motor, and that is not something that is available commercially. In order to fly homemade motors, you need to join TRA and achieve a Level 2.
 

samb

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... My suggestion: you don't need to jump in the deep end all at once.
Nor should you, or anyone, in my opinion. There's so much to learn along the way from LPR to MPR that'll help you with HPR should you want to reach that level.
Thanks I think. :confused: I almost always try to follow my own advice. Got my Level 1 two years after re-starting my rocket love and got Level 2 nine years in; a much slower track than many TRFers. I understand the appeal of sparkies. I've never flown one but I've participated in fire suppression activities at launches I've attended where others have flown them and unfortunate circumstances occurred. I'm not one to mention them to newbies or re-newbies on forums. Just like I don't give a fire hose to someone asking for a cup of water. :wink:
 

samb

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well we grew up watching the same cartoons. I grew up outside Philadelphia. Was wee willie a national show?
Nope. I grew up in Norristown. :) ... Rocket Robin Hood, Marine Boy, Speed Racer ...
 

Mushtang

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I have been away from model rocketry for the last 45 years. I was really into it when I was about 10 years old back in the mid 60's. I have just ordered some new stuff from Estes that I had sent to my son in Texas. I will be launching for my grandchildren during Easter vacation. As a child during the Apollo missions to the moon, I remember watching these launches on TV in school. It was really a big deal then. The Saturn rockets were very dramatic launches. Does anyone make rocket engines that can resemble the initially slow takeoff of one of these giants? I think it would be really cool to see a huge flame hitting the blast deflector before slowly easy off the launcher.:smile:
The best I was able to do was this video I made of a Dr. Zooch Saturn V launch on a launch pad I made. It held a -0 motor under the rocket with a ceramic bisque deflector under that. I recorded it and slowed it down to try and get the right timing of engine start to liftoff. I'd love to do this again with a better camera than I used, even the iPhone 6 camera would do a better job than this - but that's all I had at the time.

[YOUTUBE]G4ZDQIy5FVQ[/YOUTUBE]
 

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