Rocket Storage in Florida Question

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markschnell

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I moved to central Florida about five months ago and my rocket stuff is all in storage still. I've always had room in air conditioned spaces to store my built kits in the past. I don't have that here but I could store them in my un-air conditioned garage. I usually keep the door shut, but of course the humidity is a factor as well as heat - 90+ in the hot season. If I put my built rockets on a shelf, or hung a few from the ceiling in my garage will they just fall apart over time? I'm afraid the answer is going to be yes but I wanted to get some input from others with experience in hot and humid climates.
 
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I keep a lot of larger ones in the garage, mostly fiberglass and a few blue tube rockets. Been doing it for years with no problem.
 
Make sure they're supported so the body tubes don't want to sag and become banana-shaped.

The nice thing about the garage being stupid hot is it's reasonably above the dew point and mold doesn't seem to be an issue most of the time. Spring and fall, it can be cool and the humidity goes up. Cardboard might get softer and squishier then.
 
Besides a dehumidifier there is a product I use called Z rust. It removes moisture from the air. I use them in my gun safe and my ammo cabinet. Even though our humidity is low in the desert I still use them. It is an extra level of safety. You can find them on Amazon and they aren't expensive.
 
Here in Oviedo, I have most of my rockets stored in our garage and some larger ones in a storage unit. I haven't seen any signs of problems due to humidity or heat.

But, you should store motors in a cooler, drier place.
 
Quick-and-dirty way to deal with concerns about high humidity during storage of rockets: get two large, thick-walled yard/leaf bags big enough to hold the rocket(s). Dump a bag of "crystal" cat litter---silica gel desiccant---in one bag. Rockets into that bag. Twist- or zip-tie. Place that bag inside the second one, tie. Not much moisture can get through two bags like that, and the silica gel will absorb what does get through.
 
Your rockets themselves will be fine as long as the moisture isn't too bad, with that environment though storing motors for a longer time will be tricky.

I would suggest building a small insulated(4' x 8' x 8') room with some 2x4's and drywall or plastic. Then get a dehumidifier and run it during the summer in there. Make it a storage and work room. You can build it right in the garage. It won't be that bad down there, wood and cardboard parts get ruined from huge temperature swings from day to night, and the condensation that follows.

Florida doesn't have many 30° nights then 90° days, one thing though to be mindful of now is building and painting your rocket in the same temperature environment. I've made the mistake of going from a cool air conditioned room to the hotter garage. Have fun man, get yourself setup, and start flying. You have any clubs eyed up yet?
 
As a gulf coast/Fl panhandle resident, I'd say.. No.

You can do what you like, but you will have deterioration/expansion/contraction due to humidity. Do what is suggested, support to minimize sag, and just do the best you can. The big issue is time. 6mos-1 year is very different from 4 years.

Be ready to do some quick work when you want to fly one that has set up for a good time. A little sanding will probably get you to where you want.

When I can, I let cardboard stuff stand vertically, if possible. If the fin can or nose is heavy, it can bend in storage, when laid horizontally.
 
Besides a dehumidifier there is a product I use called Z rust. It removes moisture from the air. I use them in my gun safe and my ammo cabinet. Even though our humidity is low in the desert I still use them. It is an extra level of safety. You can find them on Amazon and they aren't expensive.
Zerust (assuming that's what you mean) is not a moisture absorber. It is a line of VCI products.

https://www.zerust.com/
They are effective at preventing corrosion on metal parts, but apart from those products that can act as a physical barrier (i.e., plastic bags and sleeves), will do little to nothing regarding the effects of humidity on non-metal, porous materials.

VCI is good stuff and is used throughout industry to protect metallic product streams.
 
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