Retired and finding things to do.

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Senior Space Cadet

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Hey gang:
I retired recently and am bored out of my mind. This Covid thing is killing me, figuratively. Not sure where the spark came, but I thought I could kill some time rekindling a passing interest I had many years ago.
I've designed, and am building a standard engine (18mm) rocket.
It is costing me a ridiculous amount of money. You can't just buy enough of anything for just one rocket. I realized mid stream that I should use 24mm body tubes and not 18mm. Accidentally ordered the wrong size of a couple things. Ordered a lot of tools, half of which I decided not to use. I've changed my mind so much, half the stuff I bought may end up in some drawer or the trash. Could have bought ten kits for what I have invested.
I stole my fin design from Boeing. Sorry Boeing. Seem big, but should do the job.
I do have a couple questions:
How do you use tracking powder?
Looking at the stats for Estes engines, it looks like the C5-3 is more powerful than the C6-3. From my understanding of the number system, this shouldn't be right. Am I wrong?
 

Nytrunner

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How do you use tracking powder?
Looking at the stats for Estes engines, it looks like the C5-3 is more powerful than the C6-3. From my understanding of the number system, this shouldn't be right. Am I wrong?
Welcome! The unwritten rule of rocket forum is "Lots of pictures please"

Tracking powder: put a big pinch or spoonful in the chute and wadding. Itll get puffed out on ejection and should be quite visible.

Hehehehe, C6 vs C5. The number that comes after the letter is supposed to be the Average thrust of the motor. Go to thrustcurve.org and look at each motor's thrust curve, youll see that at different times during the burn, it produces more or less than the average number in the title.
The C5 has a stronger spike towards the beginning meaning it can punch heavier rockets off the pad. Also the C6 was.....not labeled quite as accurately as other motors. But the C6 is a traditional motor and no one will change it either.
 

Mugs914

"We got both kinds, country AND western!!"
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Welcome Senior!! Glad you found your way to the Forums. I like to say that we're all a little nuts around here, but generally are mostly harmless! 🤪

You can't just buy enough of anything for just one rocket. I realized mid stream that I should use 24mm body tubes and not 18mm. Accidentally ordered the wrong size of a couple things. Ordered a lot of tools, half of which I decided not to use. I've changed my mind so much, half the stuff I bought may end up in some drawer or the trash.
Another general rocketry rule is never throw ANYTHING away. There are a couple of reasons for this:

1. The incorrect part that was ordered by mistake and tossed out will become the keystone/lynch pin of your next build and you will not be able to complete the project without it. By the time you go to order another one it will be discontinued and all old stock will have been sold. The only one available will be on Eb*y labeled "rare" and feature a triple digit price. (I am convinced that this is true even for things as common as BT-20 centering rings, of which I keep a bag that would give Santa a hernia).

2. Any tool that has been tossed, lost, sold or stolen will become, at some point, vital to the continuation of life as we know it, and not necessarily in a rocket-sense. I mean, how many times have you had to tell a buddy something like "Daggum air conditioner went out yesterday. Sure wish I hadn't tossed out that old Estes fin jig..." (Yes, in the central Texas summertime airgnishnin is vital to the continuation of life as we know it.)

3. Balsa does not grow on trees, so be sure to save every scrap. Most of us have bags of little cut-off pieces that will be "just perfect if I ever need to make a simulated navigation light on a rocket version of a Cessna 150..." Yup, better save that. I have a couple of bags worth under the bench next to the centering rings.

4. There is still a little glue in that tube. Use pliers if necessary...

5. Anything you used to have one of will suddenly become something that would generate a pretty good income if you had it to sell (see point number 1).

6. "Hoarder" only applies to those crazy folks who keep old newspapers and such, not those who keep useful things like stacks of half-used decal sheets and rocket plans with the shock cord thing cut out.

Have fun and be sure to post pics!

Mike
 
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