Roll Your Own...Fliskits Midnight Express

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Jan 19, 2009
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In honor of the Tour De Deuce launch next Saturday in Alabama (SEARS572) I assembled the Fliskits Midnight Express in TDD colors. It's FREE!!! (Thanks Jim). It took about two hours total over two evenings (not counting glue drying time). Not hard but challenging at the same time. My son is going to love this one. I'll let everyone know how she flies.

The TdD is taking over the rocketry world! :D and I love it of course :)

great job, and you got one of the new designs.... the original (that I had been handing out at shows and in orders for a while had the whole logo the other way around, leaving the Deuce image pointing downward... :p )
Originally posted by revkeith
Roll your Own...Fliskits Midnight Express

I am LMAO I really need to build one of those, then maybe glass it get some good high flights on it
Originally posted by Ryan S.
I am LMAO I really need to build one of those, then maybe glass it get some good high flights on it

**GLASS IT**??

heck, we can send the darned thing nearly out of sight on an A motor as it is, and a C motor is like *warp speed*. Glassing it will only add weight and slow it down! :D
I am building my second M.E. this very moment, and as I was cutting and gluing, it became apparent to me that this is really a very cleverly designed little item. I have no other paper rocket experience for any kind of reference - but I can tell that a lot of thought went into this thing. At least if I were to come up with something like this, it would have taken a lot of thought.:)

Is this your first paper design, Jim? - is there any particular history behind this little rocket, or did you just have a flash and make some sketches, and bam - there it was?


(And who knew it was that easy to make a launch lug? :))
Yep, the ME was my very first paper rocket, but it has also *evolved* over the years. I designed her back in the 80's. When I would teach a rocket class I ran into more and more cases where the school, class or youth group couldn't afford the full price of the kits they wanted and I would wind up eating the balance. This started getting expensive, specially since I was doing 300-500 kids a year...

So, I came up with the ME as a low cost alternative. As an added incentive, I would decorate it with the school or youthgroups colors, markings and such, to make it special for them. Back in the beginning, the fins were just a simple fold-over, two layers thick. This was *easy*, but also resulted in some squirely flights as it was hard to keep them from warping. Also, the instructions were very simple, half page text as I knew that I would be there to hand/hold the kids through construction.

When I decided to put it into production with the FlisKits name attached to it, I worked out the current fin design to eliminate that problem. It *can* be rather complicated, but I think it works wonderfully :)

As for the launch lug... man, the "Mother of invention" thing there... :) Seems that launch lugs were something that I *never* had enough of, so I came up with that as a solution. Want an launch lug? I can make one for you in the field with a business card in under 30 seconds! LOL

I do tend to put a lot of thought into my designs and I've noticed that virtually *every* design I've put up for production goes through subtle changes as I prepar it for manufacture. I've discovered that it is one thing to scratch build a design, but something else all together when I want to be able to provide a kit with instructions so that someone *else* can duplicate it. So, inevitably, I always build at least *one* more, as I am doing up the instructions, so that I can make a repeatable *kit* out of it...

Guess that course I took for engineering on "Design for Manufacturability" came in handy afterall :)

Originally posted by revkeith
In honor of the Tour De Deuce launch next Saturday in Alabama (SEARS572) I assembled the Fliskits Midnight Express in TDD colors.

Me too! Check it out.
See you Saturday Keith.

Here's another view to show the multicolored fins.
Of the 3 fins, one is all blue, one is all yellow, and the third is blue on one side and yellow on the other side.

Jim, you are more than welcome to use these pics on your website, or any way you like.

Oops. Forgot the pic.
Way to up that post count. ;)

OMG....I absolutely LOVE it! That's AWESOME! :D :D :D

Great Job - e-mail me the pattern?

oh, THOSE are keepers! :) :)

Yea, they're going up on the site tonight. very nice and a wonderful tribute to the TdD, that's for sure!
Thanks for the complements guys.

Jason, I'd be happy to send you the patterns except I created them in AutoCad, a program I actually know how to use better than any other. Any chance you have AutoCad?
I'll see if I can find a way to export them into something else and still keep the scale. If not, I can bring you some printed copies to the launch this Saturday.

I would like to someday launch all 3 of these in a drag race and try to get a pic of all 3 launching side by side. Wonder what the chances are of getting that pic? :D

The ME is an excellent kit. I've built three - lost the first one to a Tree Spirit; haven't yet flown the other two yet.

What I really love (as a graphics guy) is I can sink a lot of effort into the art, and not feel worried about losing all that work: I can just print and build another :p