Question about MD rockets

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Dragoon

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Ok so ive only been in the rocket scene for about 3 months. Im already addicted (it drives my girlfriend nuts) and i have more rockets than i care to admit. Im also going to launch my first (and hopefully last) attempt at my L1 in about a week and a half in a 4" Phoenix.

HOWEVER

Im all about speed. For a living i work on planes and ive loved fast cars since i was little so naturally some of my favorite rockets are minimum diameter rockets obviously because they can break the sound barrier. The dream rocket is the 98mm Carbon Fiber Tomach from Madcow but thats WAYYYYYYY out of my price range and skill level for awhile.

So heres the question(s). To all of the seasoned Rocketeers whats a good MD rocket to start with? Also beyond that what would be a good progression to go on as far as 29mm rocket then a 38mm so on and so forth. Any and all help, guidance, advice, and suggestions are welcome.
 
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dhbarr

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Smallest / cheapest : 18mm AT reload w/ delay shortened as far as allowable and any kit that weighs<5g. Still probably won't find it, it's crazy tiny for a machbreaker.

PROVING to yourself you've broken mach is somewhat harder. Altus makes a certed 2g alt. for about $30.

Reinforced Apogee Aspire is a popular recommendation.
 
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mpitfield

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DGBrown

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What size tube will your tracker fit in? Build some rockets in Open Rocket or Rocksim and see what will stay within your waiver. Plan for electronic deploy as well, if you run some sims you'll probably find that most motors won't have a long enough delay.
 

blackjack2564

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So heres the question(s). To all of the seasoned Rocketeers whats a good MD rocket to start with?

Any 38mm minimum would be good, smaller is REALLY hard to deal with until you gain experience. You can always adapt motors down to 29.
38 av-bay is small enough....29 is downright tiny.

That's my take on it. You better start thinking of all the electronics needed to fly and find it!
 

Dragoon

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Any 38mm minimum would be good, smaller is REALLY hard to deal with until you gain experience. You can always adapt motors down to 29.
38 av-bay is small enough....29 is downright tiny.

That's my take on it. You better start thinking of all the electronics needed to fly and find it!
38mm is definitely where i wanted to start any particular kits youd recommend im finding that most of the website dont have a MD button to click on
 

Dragoon

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Seeing as you like the Tomach, why not start there. Here are two threads to inspire you and let you know it's not that difficult and don't be intimidated. The worst thing that can happen is you fail and learn something.

https://www.rocketryforum.com/showthread.php?123418-My-Madcow-Tomach-(Money-Burner)&highlight=tomach

https://www.madcowrocketry.com/54mm-fiberglass-tomach/
I would love to start here but dont have the 400$ dollars to spend on that rocket no matter how much id like to have it
 

Zeus-cat

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I have seen one Apogee Aspire launched. No one saw it recovered. Keep in mind that high speed and minimum diameter rockets can be a fire and forget situation. Fire it and forget about it as you ain't seeing it again.
 

DavidMcCann

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Personally, MD's have a few tricky issues to them, space, motor retention, needing a tower or fly away guides, etc.

A 2.6" with a 38mm mount can break the speed of sound.... a 2.6 with a 54mm can demolish it.


The other question is, what's your waiver situation like, and are you ready to get into tracking and DD for this project?
 

MaxQ

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Personally, MD's have a few tricky issues to them, space, motor retention, needing a tower or fly away guides, etc.
A 2.6" with a 38mm mount can break the speed of sound.... a 2.6 with a 54mm can demolish it.
The other question is, what's your waiver situation like, and are you ready to get into tracking and DD for this project?
Very true.
You can ease your way into MD Mach flights on a 38mm and learn a few things along the way for less $.

98mm CF Tomach ... $899.95 yeah that's pretty steep for a ride on the learning curve.
Mpitfield made a good suggestion ...the 54mm Tomach..or......
Maybe this one meets your price range :
https://www.wildmanrocketry.com/ProductDetail.aspx?product=7124
If it looks too lame/boring, try this:
https://www.wildmanrocketry.com/ProductDetail.aspx?product=2897
-or if you can find one - ( I did - on this forum) the original bad boy, a Mongoose 38.
- or if nothing else:
https://giantleaprocketry.com/products/kits_highaltitude.aspx
 
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Dragoon

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Personally, MD's have a few tricky issues to them, space, motor retention, needing a tower or fly away guides, etc.

A 2.6" with a 38mm mount can break the speed of sound.... a 2.6 with a 54mm can demolish it.


The other question is, what's your waiver situation like, and are you ready to get into tracking and DD for this project?
yea i am prepared for all of that im working on building an arsenal of Egg products so i can use dual deploy/tracking in the things that i build and since im in OKC i have Argonia, Kansas not to far away so AirFest is always an option and a few other launches around me that are in excess of 20k AGL so for the most part i dont think that is an issue. At the moment i feel my biggest issue is finding a MD to start with that wont cost me an arm and a leg which wouldnt matter to me normally except the fact that if i mess up the build at all ill most likely never see it again which is why i dont want to start with the tomach.
 

blackjack2564

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38mm is definitely where i wanted to start any particular kits youd recommend im finding that most of the website dont have a MD button to click on
Well......since you asked, my first real Minimum and still one I fly a lot....Wildman BlackHawk 38. Links to it are above, in other post. Probably the best Value out there as it comes more complete than any others.
Includes fin alignment jig, parachute, Kevlar shock cord and High temp glue! All for 125 bucks
No bones about it.....IT is a clone of the Mongoose, just not carbon, BUT it will smoke a Mongoose at 1/2 the price. First time I raced one on 6xl CTI blues , I went 1008 ft higher, second time on smaller motors, I went 760ft higher. It does weigh 1/2lb more, but due to that coasts higher.The Goose is faster, since it's lighter, I must concede that.

Flies great on ANY 38 motor...a 2 grain H will go 1800 -2400 ft and a big J-will go 14,000 Mach 2 if you build it stock. No further reenforcement needed....no tip to tip. Just glue the fins on and go! Later on if desired you can optimize it further, by cutting several inches off the fincan and payload. I built the first one and wrote the instruction manual. If you need any help during the build, you can just PM me here. Take a look at the instructions on his site. They are several years old, and now there are many small altimeters available, that were not back then, making av-bays even easier.

For a few bucks extra, you can add eyebolts, rivets, shear-pins, [more shock cord & a drogue]if you use a drogue. Pretty much getting everything needed to make it dual deploy in your initial order all from one place. Tim has av-bay sleds and altimeters also. It would be wise to call Wildman & just discuss your wishes with him. No need to buy right off, he will be happy to discuss the whole thing and gives advice freely.

I have always held my motors in with simple friction fit and a wrap of aluminum duct tape on the outside, covering motor & airframe. Simple, cheap, works.

Good luck with whatever you decide to build!:smile:

Oh heck....just noticed...my 7,000th post. better go buy a Lotto ticket..LOL
 
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vance2loud

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regarding the comments about 29mm being too small for an altimeter, there are 24mm and 29mm AV bay kits available for the raven altimeter, The Gps tracker I use will fit into a 21mm tube ie 24mm coupler.
Smaller is a lot more fiddly and I haven't tried squeezing everything in to a 29mm MD but I can't see why a good altimeter and tracker wouldn't fit.
 

mpitfield

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I would love to start here but dont have the 400$ dollars to spend on that rocket no matter how much id like to have it
Well the kit itself is $140.00 plus your recovery, and electronics. However you are likely looking at the same recovery and electronics if you go MD, or close enough. So the difference you are looking at is the price of the base rocket. If you really like the Tomach and follow the same path as rcdude (Kyle) then you can use the same rocket for your L2 so your TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) will be pretty low, lower than if you work your way up to it.

One thing to consider if you build one of the 38mm MD rockets. Personally I have built two 38mm MD rockets, a GLR Mariah 38 and one of the original carbon fiber Mongoose 38s which is OOP. Although the basic building techniques are the same, the electronics and recovery can be a bit more of a challenge simply due to the space constraints...at least it was for me.
 

Dragoon

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Well the kit itself is $140.00 plus your recovery, and electronics. However you are likely looking at the same recovery and electronics if you go MD, or close enough. So the difference you are looking at is the price of the base rocket. If you really like the Tomach and follow the same path as rcdude (Kyle) then you can use the same rocket for your L2 so your TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) will be pretty low, lower than if you work your way up to it.

One thing to consider if you build one of the 38mm MD rockets. Personally I have built two 38mm MD rockets, a GLR Mariah 38 and one of the original carbon fiber Mongoose 38s which is OOP. Although the basic building techniques are the same, the electronics and recovery can be a bit more of a challenge simply due to the space constraints...at least it was for me.
To be honest with you i had no idea they even made a mini Tomach all i knew about was the 54 and 98mm versions
 

DavidMcCann

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To be honest with you i had no idea they even made a mini Tomach all i knew about was the 54 and 98mm versions
It's not a mini. It's $140 for the fiberglass 54mm The carbon fiber one is $400.
 

Dragoon

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You can scratch build one for pretty cheap. I built this 29mm MD with Blue Tube and a fiberglass nosecone. Too small to put an altimeter in it but it sims at over mach 1 on a G250.
https://www.rocketryforum.com/showt...her-29mm-Minimum-Diameter&p=639379#post639379
Sooooo ive been reading all the responses one by one and doing research as i go and i just got to yours and i must say that rocket is awesome looking especially for being scratch built my builds have gotten much better really quickly due to a member in the club thats been teaching me but my painting skills are somewhere between a -3 and a -1 on a scale of 10 compared to your painting
 

mpitfield

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Sooooo ive been reading all the responses one by one and doing research as i go and i just got to yours and i must say that rocket is awesome looking especially for being scratch built my builds have gotten much better really quickly due to a member in the club thats been teaching me but my painting skills are somewhere between a -3 and a -1 on a scale of 10 compared to your painting
Yeah but Nathan has an unfair advantage, he is actually a robot as there is no way a human could finish a rocket that well...just ignore him.
 

jasonp

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look at Carolina Composite Rocketry Charlie does great work
 

Dragoon

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Yeah but Nathan has an unfair advantage, he is actually a robot as there is no way a human could finish a rocket that well...just ignore him.
So in the matter of things yet to be achieved how would one go about becoming a robot like Nathan lol
 

blackbrandt

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We have yet to figure that out. If you make any progress on that though, let us know. It's been driving us insane ever since he joined.
 

Dragoon

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We have yet to figure that out. If you make any progress on that though, let us know. It's been driving us insane ever since he joined.
Ill get to work on the right away........in the mean time i have to build my Darkstar Jr. Although mine will be called the Bio Star once its done
 

Mendal

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I would go with a 38mm thin-wall fiberglass kit of your choice with dual deploy and leave out the motor mount. You can find a number of good options here: https://www.madcowrocketry.com/thin-wall-fiberglass-16/ and here: https://www.wildmanrocketry.com/ShowProducts.aspx?Class=463&Sub=1182.
I'm new to the concept of MD so I'm enjoying this thread. If you leave out the MMT what happens to the TTW fins? do you just cut them back to the inside diameter and glue the fins into the slots?
 

blackjack2564

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I'm new to the concept of MD so I'm enjoying this thread. If you leave out the MMT what happens to the TTW fins? do you just cut them back to the inside diameter and glue the fins into the slots?

Yep.
 

mpitfield

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Ill get to work on the right away........
Don't go down that road as you may have to sell your soul, best case it will drive you nutz!

I'm new to the concept of MD so I'm enjoying this thread. If you leave out the MMT what happens to the TTW fins? do you just cut them back to the inside diameter and glue the fins into the slots?
Basically the fins become surface mounted. Have a peek through the forum for some MD build threads, BlackJack is one to look at as well as Jim Jarvis who provides a lot of detail on his methods and methodology.

Keep in mind that this is somewhat subjective so there is a bit of discussion about the best way to attach your fins. The conversations covers everything from epoxies, best practices using epoxies for best adhesion, surface mount vs. a quasi TTW, fin preparation for maximum surface bonding area, fillets, aero-heating, T2T layups, T2T under vacuum, etc.

Bottom line, there are many methods and materials to consider but like most of this hobby many opinions on the subject, especially when it comes to the general topic of just enough (engineering) or use the "best" and over-build.

In the end just do what you have means to do and do what works for you, so long as you follow common sense and safety first.
 
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