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Space Shuttle (scratch build)

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hermanjc

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I would like to add to my fleet of scale scratch builds. Next up, the Space Shuttle. And just because I like to make things way more complicated than they have to be, I plan to have 18mm motors in the SRBs, with a 24mm motor in the orange fuel tank. The SRBs will separate at burnout (similar to the Falcon Heavy I built). The basis of the design is the Estes 1284 model (from the 80s-90s I think) that had just the single motor in the orange fuel tank, and a shuttle that would separate and glide at ejection (which I will also attempt). I am upscaling it 1.5X to use a 3" scratch tube for the fuel tank. SRBs will be 1.3" scratch tubes (or maybe BT-55s if I don't want to make them from scratch). The shuttle itself will be built around a 2" body tube.

I do have a question for the TRF community on this one. In order to be stable, the Estes kit needed to have large fins at the bottoms of the SRBs. Since I plan for these to breakaway and the center motor to continue to burn, I am going to need the fins to be attached to the center tank. My first thought is to use a lightweight boom (carbon fiber perhaps) with V-tail fins. I have modified and upscaled a Rocksim file found on rocketreviews and at first blush this might just work (will require some nose weight). Does anyone here have any similar build experience with a "tail boom" like this? I have never worked with carbon fiber, and hoping a small tube (maybe 4mm OD, 2mm ID) will be sufficient. Thoughts? Should I at least rotate the fins away from the flame?

HASX_Shuttle_Sideview.png
HASX_Shuttle_topview.png
 

mo2872

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I have no answers for you, but as a "built the Estes version twice with zero perfect flights" guy.........FOLLOWING WITH EXTREME INTEREST.......
 

Kelly

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I like the idea. "Yes" on rotating the fins - keeps them out of the exhaust, in a better airstream, and away from the boosters when they separate.
 

hermanjc

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George Gassaway did a similar set up on his shuttle. True work of art. He came up with solutions to every problem you could imagine. His shuttle page: http://www.georgesrockets.com/GRP/Scale/SHUTTLE.htm Hopefully he'll see this thread and chime in.
This is awesome! Thank you very much for providing this. I will have to dive in. From a quick glance at that site I can guarantee you that my end product will not live up to the "work of art" status George G set as a very high bar :)
 

BABAR

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I would like to add to my fleet of scale scratch builds. Next up, the Space Shuttle. And just because I like to make things way more complicated than they have to be, I plan to have 18mm motors in the SRBs, with a 24mm motor in the orange fuel tank. The SRBs will separate at burnout (similar to the Falcon Heavy I built). The basis of the design is the Estes 1284 model (from the 80s-90s I think) that had just the single motor in the orange fuel tank, and a shuttle that would separate and glide at ejection (which I will also attempt). I am upscaling it 1.5X to use a 3" scratch tube for the fuel tank. SRBs will be 1.3" scratch tubes (or maybe BT-55s if I don't want to make them from scratch). The shuttle itself will be built around a 2" body tube.

I do have a question for the TRF community on this one. In order to be stable, the Estes kit needed to have large fins at the bottoms of the SRBs. Since I plan for these to breakaway and the center motor to continue to burn, I am going to need the fins to be attached to the center tank. My first thought is to use a lightweight boom (carbon fiber perhaps) with V-tail fins. I have modified and upscaled a Rocksim file found on rocketreviews and at first blush this might just work (will require some nose weight). Does anyone here have any similar build experience with a "tail boom" like this? I have never worked with carbon fiber, and hoping a small tube (maybe 4mm OD, 2mm ID) will be sufficient. Thoughts? Should I at least rotate the fins away from the flame?

View attachment 433528
View attachment 433529
A ring fin or a “box” fin might provide the surface are you need to keep the fin surfaces out of the three nozzle blasts.
 
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Charles_McG

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My build thread with similar goals.

 

hermanjc

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The tubes have been rolled, and recently I purchased a 3D printer, so I'm taking advantage and have printed the nose and aft closure for the center external tank and the nose cones and nozzles for the solid rocket boosters. Looking good so far. Next going to print booster release parts.
IMG_20201020_194704748.jpg
IMG_20201021_082509360.jpg
IMG_20201021_175121206.jpg
 
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