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Semroc Lil Hercules

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rbeckey

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My son received kit number 59 for Christmas and decided he wanted to build it. It is a very simple tumble recovery rocket reminiscent of the Mosquito with an 18mm engine mount. The fins are laser cut and the NC is balsa. There are four small washers that attach to the fins, apparently to cause tumbling.
For the sake of ease of recovery, Jake and I converted the rocket to 13mm by the simple expedient of placing a 13mm motor mount in the 18mm BT. The motor will eject as with the 18mm version, and additional weight will be minimal. Jake applied Minwax Wood Hardener to the fins and NC (under careful supervision) and the fins were eventually covered with permanent label paper on both sides to strengthen and simplify finishing. The results were very good. I applied thin CA to the edges to secure the label paper. The NC was also finished with sanding sealer to make it smooth as possible. Jake did almost all of the work with a little help from Dad.
I got a new scale for Christmas and only recalled that fact after the fins were finished. After being soaked with Wood Hardener and coated with paper, the four fins together only weigh .1 ounce, or 4 grams. If anyone has naked fins, it would be interesting to weigh them for comparison.
I must say that the directions for the kit are spectacular. It is a stapled booklet with heavy covers that double as the front of the packaging insert. Very cool. (Not that directions are really necessary for this little model.) Jake has already decided to keep the instruction booklet "forever." More to follow.
 

astronboy

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I am in the finishing stages of my Lil Herc as well. I liked the kit, and the wonderful instructions, esp the history of the original kit. I know that this was part of the original design, but I did not like the idea of just blobbing on the washers at the end of building, so I drilled holes in the fins and inserted the washers inside the fins, and paved them over with FNF. I then soaked the fins with CA for strength. Once I get the lil sucker presentable, I will post some pics.
 
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