Some interesting Nike combinations..

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Well-Known Member
Feb 22, 2003
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As a scale freak, I was doing the normal surfing for images, details and the like. Now mind you, I'm no expert on every single combination of missile thats been thought of and created, but when I saw this link, it made me sit up and take notice.

For those that have problems with the link - it was a bit finiky, here is what got my full attention.

The Nike Story: The Unknown Chapter
By Captain Lange

A brief article in a regional newspaper mentioning the unsuccessful launch of a NIKE-ORION inspired me to learn more about this rocket. The mystery of the NIKE-ORION was finally solved with the kind assistance of many U.S. firms, the Documentation Center of the German Armed Forces and the assistance of Mr. Grill of the Max Planck Institute for Aeronautics.

Unexpectedly, this research also revealed many hitherto unknown uses for the M5-E1 Nike rocket motor -- the booster stage of the Ajax, and, in a cluster of four, the first stage of the Hercules.

As the U.S. Army phased out the HONEST JOHN, the NIKE AJAX, and (later) the NIKE HERCULES systems, their solid fuel motors were bought up by the aerospace industry.

By joining these widely-available boosters together with other rocket types, a large number of inexpensive and extremely reliable rockets suitable for both civil and military research, were produced.

In addition to NASA, the U.S. Air Force and other institutions, the German Federal Ministry of Science also utilized these rockets. In 1970, for example, a Javelin D4 (a Nike-derived research rocket) fired from Natal, Brazil, carried an impulse transponder for slant range and trajectory measurement, to an altitude of roughly 900 kilometers and across a horizontal distance of 800 kilometers.

The 17.5-meter-long rocket had a launch weight of 7,348 pounds (without payload) and produced 225,400 pounds of thrust for 95 seconds. More than 300 of these rockets were subsequently launched for experiments conducted within the upper athmosphere and in earth orbit.

Other experimental rocket designs were utilized as targets in the development of modern ATBM systems. In October, 1987,
a NIKE-Hydac was successfully launched from the Poker Flat Research Range in Alaska.

According to the documents made available to me, some 13 types of rockets use (or used) the M5-E1 Nike booster:

NIKE Orion
NIKE Apache
NIKE Cajun
NIKE Hydac
NIKE Malemute
NIKE Tomahawk
NIKE Sandhawk
Javelin D 4
Honest John-NIKE
Honest John-NIKE-Hydac
Honest John-NIKE-Javelin
Honest John-NIKE-NIKE
Honest John-NIKE-NIKE-Hydac

The reason why the aforementioned launch of the NIKE-ORION rocket by NASA failed finally became clear when the components of that rocket were revealed.

This compact research rocket featured a Nike booster section joined with -- incredibly -- a HAWK as the second stage! All of us knew beforehand that these components could never be made to work together. But no one ever thought to ask us!

Ya know, as a fan of the Nike, and my favorite straight shooter missile, the Sandhawk, I always wondered, and voila !

Man, I have got to order some parts soon and give this combo a whirl !

Awww man now I gotta build a 5.5" Sandhawk to stick on top of my Nike-Smoke?! Gee thanks Silverleaf, look what you got me into :p :kill:

Hmmm... 75mm or 98mm mount in the sustainer?
Rotf, well I was thinking smaller to start, but dang, your idea for a 5.5 inch sandhawk has me droolin ...again.

This single page has done more for my imagination in the last 24 hours, I've got ideas pouring out of my skull, and this time i'm writing them down 8)

Very much looking foreward to seeing your finished design.