Quantcast

New to the hobby some questions.

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

KHandSons

Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2009
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
hello, I am Fairly new to the hobby (as in I was very young when Dad and me launched Estes back in the 80's). So Im wanting to get back into the hobby with my kids who are 8 and 10 perfect age's i believe. Any helpful hints tips trick will be very much appreciated. Im thinking of getting an Estes RTF with pad setup to get started...? good choice? Ill probly get a kit or two also to start working on, and im only new to rockets ive built lots of rc's and models.
 

Meat

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 31, 2009
Messages
49
Reaction score
0
I recently started with my 6 year old son I picked up the $13 flash rtf set at walmart. I have picked up a couple of other small kits that were rtf for my son so far. I do alot of scratch built stuff for myself. Walmart last I went had 3 packs of c sized motors for $3 so would be a good place to start.
 

KHandSons

Member
Joined
Feb 9, 2009
Messages
9
Reaction score
0
ok thanks Meat im gonna check walmart tomorrow , that seem very reasonable for the kit and the C engines!
 

AKPilot

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 5, 2009
Messages
5,347
Reaction score
0
Hey there, welcome to TRF!

In my experience, the TRF stuff at Walmart is a good deal for someone coming back into the hobby, or someone starting off from the ground-up.

The kits are easy to put together, they come with a launch pad, and a launch controller. Sometimes even with a few motors. So for the $13-18 you may spend it's a good investment.

Once you get yourself familiar with things, then it'd be time to look at some of our outstanding vendors here on the forum. The sky's the limit!
 

BobH48

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
3,388
Reaction score
1
In my experience, the TRF stuff at Walmart is a good deal for someone coming back into the hobby, or someone starting off from the ground-up.
Wow, they have TRF stuff at Walmart? Is it anywhere near the RTF stuff?
 

jj94

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
4,026
Reaction score
0
I personally would recommend getting a simple RTF and then buy an easy kit. I prefer the Big Bertha; it's easy, has large and easy to handle pieces, and is a great flier.

Wow, they have TRF stuff at Walmart? Is it anywhere near the RTF stuff?
Hahaha.
 

DAllen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
4,808
Reaction score
727
Some words of advice for the kiddos...Be sure they understand some fundamental facts about rocketry BEFORE they start spending loads of time building a rocket. The most important fact is that bad things happen to rockets. I've watched my kids freak out when a chute fails to deploy or things like that because I just didn't explain it well enough for them. I think it is important for kids not to become too emotionally attached to any rockets because any one of them can crash, cato, or just plain disappear.

Safety is another thing I and many other parents seem to overlook. At a club launch it's tempting to let the kids run off and play somewhere. I have made it a standing rule with my kids that they are to always stop what they are doing and pay attention to the rockets once they announced over the PA and not do anything else until the chute is safely out. I made my kids read the NAR safety code aloud before building rockets and believe it or not they remember most of it.

Also, I would suggest running with the kids interest with the rockets. My boy for example LOVES airplanes. So if we go to a launch we often bring his boost gliders. My daughter...well...it's basically the biggest motors Daddy can afford so we go with that.

Good luck and flying rockets with kids is a hoot. You won't believe the crazy ideas they come up with.

-DAllen
 

shreadvector

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
9,036
Reaction score
196
I personally would recommend getting a simple RTF and then buy an easy kit. I prefer the Big Bertha; it's easy, has large and easy to handle pieces, and is a great flier.



Hahaha.

Or you can buy a complete starter set plus a Big Betty kit and lots of other items directly from Quest during their 40% off sale this weekend. See the thread in the Vendor Forum for details.
 

jj94

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
4,026
Reaction score
0
Or you can buy a complete starter set plus a Big Betty kit and lots of other items directly from Quest during their 40% off sale this weekend. See the thread in the Vendor Forum for details.
Yes, you can do that too.;)
 

MarkII

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
8,255
Reaction score
9
The Estes Alpha III Starter Set has long been regarded as an excellent introduction to model rocketry. The Alpha III is an E2X rocket kit, meaning that some assembly is required, but not as much as a full-blown hobby kit. The Starter Set also provides you with a Porta-Pad II launch pad and an Electron Beam launch controller, both of which will serve you and your kids well for your first couple of years (at least) of model rocket flying.

An RTF is a good way to get flying right away. It is a way to show your kids how model rockets fly, and the speed and altitude that they can achieve. If your kids continue to show an interest, showing them kits that they build is the way to introduce them to the hobby of sport rocketry. You can then show them that they can build their own rockets, and that by building the models themselves, they can influence how their rockets will perform.

Mark \\.
 

spacecadet

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
884
Reaction score
0
New? No. You're a Born Again Rocketeer, like me. Welcome.
Don't forget to wear a BAR badge.
 

Peartree

Cyborg Rocketeer
Staff member
Administrator
Global Mod
Joined
Jan 6, 2009
Messages
5,027
Reaction score
563
Location
Alliance, Ohio
Another important note. Wal-mart likes to sell a lot of 'C' motors but these motors will make rockets disappear on even medium sized fields. If your field is small, start with the smallest motor recommended in the instructions and move up as your field size allows.
 

jflis

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
15,422
Reaction score
34
Welcome back to rocketry and back to TRF! :)

A starter set is the perfect way to get started and to get all of your ground support equipment.

Also, I agree with the comment about watching what motors you use. C motors are almost *too* easy to get and most kids want the biggest... I recommend you always start with the smallest recommended motor and use it to become familiar with your rocket and your field.

After that, call me a traditionalist, but building rockets is SO much more satisfying than buying one pre-built (Ready To Fly - RTF). I invite you to check out our (FlisKits) Whatchamacallit kit as well as the Thing-a-ma-Jig

These two kits are VERY easy to build, nearly impossible to mess up and will provide a solid and positive experience as a first build.

Keep us posted! :)
jim
 

powderburner

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
7,401
Reaction score
4
The 40%-off sale at Quest (coming in a few days) is definitely a good break on prices, but if you factor in their shipping costs you will need to order quite a bit of stuff just to break even, let alone see much savings.

If there are Hobby Lobby stores near you, watch their web site for the 40%-off coupons that they run every 3-4 weeks. You can print as many coupons as you like. HobLob stores seem to all have a pretty good stock of Estes stuff, including motors.

Less often, but still worth watching for, are similar discount coupons for Michaels craft stores and Jo-Ann fabric stores. Michaels seems to put coupons in the newspaper for most major holidays. Some Michaels stores have a small rocketry section, some have nothing at all (Michaels seems to be getting out of the model rocketry biz). Jo-Ann also puts the occasional coupon in the newspaper and while they do not carry model rocketry stuff (at least, in my town) they do carry balsawood that you can use for fins and glider wings.

In some parts of the country, Target stores apparently carry model rocketry stuff in the toy section, but I have not seen rockets/motors in a Target in a long time around here. Likewise, Toys-R-Us used to carry a small rocketry section but not anymore.

Check your local hobby shop. It never hurts to ask. However, expect their prices to be a bit higher---

And there are TONS of new mail-order vendors in this hobby since you were younger. Almost ALL of them are great, honest, knowledgeable, fast, and great (I can't think of even one to warn you against). They are involved in rocketry because they love it, not because they plan to make a killing. If you like, check here on TRF about any specific vendor and you will almost always get useful feedback. The "Big E" is no longer the only game in town for fun kits, and quite often, does not even offer much that you will find interesting. Our new vendors, OTOH, offer a wide variety of great kits, ideas, configurations, skill levels, and performance levels. The only problem is that there is soooo much to choose from that it almost gets confusing. Start at Applewhite, go through the list to Zooch, and enjoy everything in between.
 

shreadvector

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
9,036
Reaction score
196
1) none of the stores mentioned carries Quest.

2) Local retail stores will charge sales tax. Factor that in.

3) Quest motors include the BEST ingiter ever made/sold/invented - the new Q2G2. It is astoundingly superior.

4) Quest motor make lots of smoke.

5) Quest rockets have Kevlar shock cord anchors.

6) You cannot get MicroMaxx rockets or motors at those stores listed.

7) be sure to factor in the cost of gasoline and auto wear and tear when driving to your local hobby shop. And the personal time expended.

etc.

The 40%-off sale at Quest (coming in a few days) is definitely a good break on prices, but if you factor in their shipping costs you will need to order quite a bit of stuff just to break even, let alone see much savings.

If there are Hobby Lobby stores near you, watch their web site for the 40%-off coupons that they run every 3-4 weeks. You can print as many coupons as you like. HobLob stores seem to all have a pretty good stock of Estes stuff, including motors.

Less often, but still worth watching for, are similar discount coupons for Michaels craft stores and Jo-Ann fabric stores. Michaels seems to put coupons in the newspaper for most major holidays. Some Michaels stores have a small rocketry section, some have nothing at all (Michaels seems to be getting out of the model rocketry biz). Jo-Ann also puts the occasional coupon in the newspaper and while they do not carry model rocketry stuff (at least, in my town) they do carry balsawood that you can use for fins and glider wings.

In some parts of the country, Target stores apparently carry model rocketry stuff in the toy section, but I have not seen rockets/motors in a Target in a long time around here. Likewise, Toys-R-Us used to carry a small rocketry section but not anymore.

Check your local hobby shop. It never hurts to ask. However, expect their prices to be a bit higher---

And there are TONS of new mail-order vendors in this hobby since you were younger. Almost ALL of them are great, honest, knowledgeable, fast, and great (I can't think of even one to warn you against). They are involved in rocketry because they love it, not because they plan to make a killing. If you like, check here on TRF about any specific vendor and you will almost always get useful feedback. The "Big E" is no longer the only game in town for fun kits, and quite often, does not even offer much that you will find interesting. Our new vendors, OTOH, offer a wide variety of great kits, ideas, configurations, skill levels, and performance levels. The only problem is that there is soooo much to choose from that it almost gets confusing. Start at Applewhite, go through the list to Zooch, and enjoy everything in between.
 

MysticalRockets

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
604
Reaction score
1
Welcome back to rocketry and back to TRF! :)

A starter set is the perfect way to get started and to get all of your ground support equipment.

Also, I agree with the comment about watching what motors you use. C motors are almost *too* easy to get and most kids want the biggest... I recommend you always start with the smallest recommended motor and use it to become familiar with your rocket and your field.

After that, call me a traditionalist, but building rockets is SO much more satisfying than buying one pre-built (Ready To Fly - RTF). I invite you to check out our (FlisKits) Whatchamacallit kit as well as the Thing-a-ma-Jig

These two kits are VERY easy to build, nearly impossible to mess up and will provide a solid and positive experience as a first build.

Keep us posted! :)
jim


Brother Jim is a wise man.

*waits for Jim to stop laughing*

I would definitely suggest the two kits Jim did, as well as the FlisKits Rhino.

Also, look up Semroc's website http://www.semroc.com and look at some of the smaller kits there. A lot of them are what people would call "throwbacks" these days, and are great to improve basic modeling skills.

One thing is that you HAVE to educate them that things DO fail. Get them used to it. Ain't nothing worse than a 9 year old girl crying because the ejection charge didn't go off on her Barbie rocket and it turned into a lawn dart. (Ok, I was laughing but she wasn't. I had to promise to build her a new one to get her to stop. I love my niece. :D )
 

Pippen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
1,969
Reaction score
3
View attachment 2025
This forum is filled with kids then. ;)
LOL, how true...

Welcome back to the hobby, KHandSons! There's no one best way to go about getting kids into model rocketry and you're sure to find a lot of different ideas and opinions here at TRF. People may have favorite vendors, preferred methods, ideas of what is the best, etc. but really the important thing with kids is to get them up and flying quickly, keep it simple, and keep it fun.

One thing that hasn't been mentioned to make rocketry interesting is to build theme rockets instead of going with the suggested paint schemes. You can really get creative with this and I can remember seeing Spiderman, Barbie, Hannah Montanah, Veggie Tales themed rockets as well as many others built by and for kids here. This really increases the fun factor for a lot of kids.:)

Here's my daughter's Flower Power Thing-a-ma-Jig. She found paint colors that she liked and then attached stickers with a little superglue to get them to stay put.
 

Attachments

Last edited:

johnnwwa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
629
Reaction score
0
New? No. You're a Born Again Rocketeer, like me. Welcome.
Don't forget to wear a BAR badge.
Spacecadet

BAR Badges! We don't need no stinkin' Badges.;)

Sorry just could not help myself.

BAR
John
 

johnnwwa

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
629
Reaction score
0
Welcome back to the hobby.

Oh I am surprised nobody has mention Dog Barf yet.

Available at Lowes or Home Depot for about $10 comes in a bail, ( Blown in paper fire retardant treated insulation )used for wadding it will replace the paper wadding you may remember using back in the day. I have been using a bail with our club for the past 5 years haven't even used 1/2 a bail yet. Great stuff.

BAR
John
 

kramer714

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 20, 2009
Messages
697
Reaction score
10
Taking the kids to a club launch is great fun too! The first time my son heard his name over the PA as the rocket launched he had a big grin. We don't go monthly but since he was 4 we hit 3-4 launches a year including some of the camp outs at Lucerne with ROC. Seeing lots of rockets helps get the ideas going plus makes a full day out of a few motors.

Don't teach them the alphabet. My kid started out with his A-B-C's. Lately he has convinced Dad (please stop twisting my arm... o.k.,o.k.) to learn about the alphabet from D all the way to M. It was cheaper to launch in the A-B-C days.

(P.S. the launches include bringing the Cub Scouts out to Fred's launches! Thanks Fred)
 

Pippen

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
1,969
Reaction score
3
Taking the kids to a club launch is great fun too! The first time my son heard his name over the PA as the rocket launched he had a big grin. We don't go monthly but since he was 4 we hit 3-4 launches a year including some of the camp outs at Lucerne with ROC. Seeing lots of rockets helps get the ideas going plus makes a full day out of a few motors.
)
When my kids were little my husband used to take them to Secret Rocket Club meetings. They couldn't fool me: I knew they were really going out for donuts and chocolate milk with maybe a little rocket talk thrown in for cover.
 

shreadvector

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
9,036
Reaction score
196
http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~brians/errors/bail.html

Not every Home Depot or Lowes carries it. If you find it, great stuff.

http://www.wsu.edu:8080/~brians/errors/bail.html

Welcome back to the hobby.

Oh I am surprised nobody has mention Dog Barf yet.

Available at Lowes or Home Depot for about $10 comes in a bail, ( Blown in paper fire retardant treated insulation )used for wadding it will replace the paper wadding you may remember using back in the day. I have been using a bail with our club for the past 5 years haven't even used 1/2 a bail yet. Great stuff.

BAR
John
 

jj94

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
4,026
Reaction score
0
1) none of the stores mentioned carries Quest.

2) Local retail stores will charge sales tax. Factor that in.

3) Quest motors include the BEST ingiter ever made/sold/invented - the new Q2G2. It is astoundingly superior.

4) Quest motor make lots of smoke.

5) Quest rockets have Kevlar shock cord anchors.

6) You cannot get MicroMaxx rockets or motors at those stores listed.

7) be sure to factor in the cost of gasoline and auto wear and tear when driving to your local hobby shop. And the personal time expended.

etc.
I'd just like to add that I personally like Quest motors the best. Although I do fly Estes a lot more due to availability issues. The Quest motors have much more accurate burn times, thrust curves, delay times, and ejection charges. They look better in the air too.
 
Top