Rocketry Organization of California (ROC) February 12 2022 Launch: My flights and highlights

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smstachwick

LPR/MPR sport flier with an eye to HPR and scale
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I’m afraid I didn’t get much flying done that morning. I did, however, have an excellent breakfast in….Hesperia I believe. I’ll update this post with a recommendation if I can remember. (EDIT: It was Goody’s in Victorville. Go if you get a chance.). Tasty as that was, it also slowed me down a bit: I didn’t get back to the range until about 8:40.

After checking in and watching a few high-power flights, I headed back to my truck, set up my workstation, and packed a rocket. My Star Orbiter went up on my last Estes E16-6.
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Always a good performer. It came back with even more compression damage though, with the discolored area extending more than a full turn along the spiral.

It drifted off a considerable distance to the west. Winds were pretty calm at the surface but I could tell they’d be pretty strong at altitude.

The next flight of the day for my party was actually made by my girlfriend. I brought her out so she could see her first high-power launch, and she also flew her very first rocket that she had constructed entirely on her own. It’s an Estes Yankee she decorated with acrylic paint to look like a pencil, which inspired my idea to call it the Yankee Doodle. It made a textbook-perfect flight on an A8-5.

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Even with streamer recovery and that small motor, drift was considerable, and going for B power made both of us nervous. Winds were picking up at the surface, too, so we agreed to save that flight for a calmer day.

All I had left were additional motors for the Yankee Doodle and booster-sustainer motor pairings I had intended to fly in my Super Goblin, plus a few composites that I thought would be too powerful. My stock being depleted of motor-airframe combinations appropriate for the conditions forced me to shut down my own flight operations. Flying the field sucks sometimes.

I stuck around for a bit though, assisting Jack Pacente in recovering his Junior Level 1 certification rocket, which made a beautiful flight on an Aerotech H250G but blew a considerable distance on the ground. I believe he was approved for certification that day, with the damage being attributed to being dragged over the ground by unforgiving surface winds. On the return trip, I bore witness to another large rocket being dragged right past me, so I packed its parachute so it would stay put, but I otherwise didn’t tamper with it.

Flight ops continued until 1, but by then I was long gone. I had packed up my stuff at noon and gone home when it became apparent that winds wouldn’t quit. I presume a few souls continued braving the air currents and eventually tore down the equipment, and I salute them for it.
 
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