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Squirrelworks: Space Ranger

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astronboy

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I was immediately drawn to this kit's retro look and curved fins as well, so I immediately ordered one. When I received my order, I was very pleased with the rocket. Here are the Basic stats:

BT-20 based
Balsa NC
Laser cut fins
cardstock cockpit
Mylar streamer
Real Live water slide decals
very clear instructions

The model was a very quick build. The only reason it took more than one night, was that I always use classic 'double glue joints' on the fins, and these take a bit of time to dry. If you are a fumble fingers like me, you may want to photocopy the cockpit pattern onto some cardstock in case your first attempt does not come out right.

The balsa is nice and light, without being 'mushy'. The nose cone fit very well, and you just canot beat laser cut fins, especially when the fins are curved and you cannot use a metal straightedge when cutting them.

I was very pleased that Squirrelworks recognized that a small rocket this size needs a streamer if you are every goind to launch it more than once !! Too many kits are 'over hatted' and a rocketeer's joy turns to dismay as the overy large parachute floats off to New Jersey....

Since I am completely unable to build any kit as stock, I did add a 13mm conversion mount, since I just LOVE 13mm motors. I also live in an area with TONS off Rocket Eating Trees, so this little baby would have made a good snack for them on a C motor anyway. If you have the room for recovery, ny all means, go with the 18mm mount.

My two nephews (ages 7 and 12) rated this design as "COOL!! I want one!!" so this may be a good gift for an aspiring young rocketeer.

The Squirrelworks is one of the newer companies, and they offer a neat, if small assortment of clones and 'retro inspired' kits.

http://www.squirrel-works.com/

BTW: I picked up a Red Baron as well, and the kit looks just as good as the Space Ranger.


I have not yet painted my Ranger, so here is a 'nekked' picture of the built kit:
 

NUBlackshirts

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Y'know, I have had quite a few rockets end up in New Jersey, and I was launching from Kansas! :D

Nice rocket BTW.
 

SecretSquirrel

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Thanks for the great review!

My original prototype of the Space Ranger is fitted with a 13mm motor mount. Once I had shown it around at DARS I had several people suggest that it be kitted with the 18mm mount. So I figured you can always adapt down but not the other way.

The Space Ranger flies great on a 13m motor. Lands close to the pad too.
 

Fore Check

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Is the Red Baron a variation of the Flying Jenny? Is the scallopped trailing edge of the wing laser cut too?

Is the Space Ranger inspired by the Estes Star Blazer?

Star Blazer: http://www.dars.org/jimz/k-31.htm

Kewl Kit!
 

astronboy

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I would call both of these models 'inspired'. They are not clones or direct copies however. Yes, my Red Baron is similar to the Flying Jenny, and has laser cut 'Fokker' scallops. :)
 

powderburner

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Originally posted by Fore Check
Is the Red Baron a variation of the Flying Jenny?

Looks pretty obvious to me---- the RB couldn't be a closer copy of the FJ without making it COMPLETELY obvious. Of course, it is painted red, and has those cute little 'aileron tabs' sticking out the tips, which makes it different to most folks . . .

Then again, I know people who can't figure out that Chevies, Buicks, and Caddys are the same basic frame/body/motor with slightly different front & rear panels added on.
 

SecretSquirrel

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Yes the Red Baron is indeed inspired by the Flying Jenny. But that seems to be an accepted trend in rocketry.

Look at the Big Betty and the Big Bertha, the Tumble Weed and the Sprite or the Cheetah and the Omega. Those are just three examples of many. So it seems I’m in the very best of company here.

Is the Bed Baron a copy of the Flying Jenny? No.
Could a Jenny be made form a Red Baron? The answer is yes, but first throw away about 55% of the kit. The wing areas are too different to modify one into the other. The rudders are a different shape as well and could not be re cut for the Jenny. The nose has been changed but that’s not as hard to deal with.

If you have to change that much of the kit, it’s not a copy.

If you want to turn the Jenny into the Baron, then you’re in for a real treat. I can tell you from personal experience that you don’t know true joy until you’ve cut out all those little scallops by hand. And you don’t get the cool decals.

The same story with the Space Ranger and Star Blazer. If you wanted to turn the Space Ranger into the Star Blazer, here is a list of parts that do not have to be modified or replaced: Engine Block, Shock Chord, Shock Chord Mount, and Screw Eye.

One of the beta testers for the Space Ranger was going to build it up to be a Star Blazer, but when he realized just how much modification would be needed, he abandoned that plan.

I’ve done two reproduction kits and that’s all I intend to do. They have served their purposes. They’ll be discontinued next month.

On the other hand, there have been many, many great kits that are no longer available. I can’t help but be inspired by some of them. And if my sales figures are any indication, I’m definitely right on track with kits like the Red Baron and Space Ranger.
 

n3tjm

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I can't wait till my Red Barron comes in the mail... should be any day now....

I silenced that voice in my head.....

But there are many other voices in my head... only one thing to do about that.....
 

n3tjm

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... but I am waiting on pushing then button... money is very tight... and once I find another job... guess what I am going to do ;)
 

SecretSquirrel

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I'm sorry Doug, you should have that kit by now.

I shipped that thing by priority mail and you should have gotten it today at the very latest.
 

n3tjm

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Thanks. I was not worried about it... but I will keep a sharp eye out for it. I will check in the garage for it when I go do the lockup routine. Sometimes the mail man sticks packages in the door....
 

SecretSquirrel

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My sincere apologies Doug. I have no idea why your kit hasn't arrived by now. I just did a track and confirm and it still shows undelivered. I've aleady sent you the delivery confirmation number so you can verify that it was shipped this past weekend.


If it hasn't arrived by Xmas Eve, email me and I'll send another. That's 10 days from shipment and that's pleanty long for priority mail, even during the holiday season. And if I have to re-ship, I'll throw in a Space Ranger as well.
 

SecretSquirrel

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That's great news!

I was just sitting here, on the phone with the post office, after being put on hold for the third time.

I look in on TRF and you just posted a message. YEAH! I can hang up now.

I hope you enjoy the kit. I'm glad it finally got there.
 

carldoc

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Secret Squirrel, you are going to discontinue the Goblin?:confused:
 

SecretSquirrel

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Yes, I'm almost sold out of the initial run and I won't be making any more.

I made the replicas primarily to find out some of the ins and outs of producing a kit. Doing a couple of clones was much easier than designing and kitting from scratch.

I'm moving on to more original designs like the FFE or this new one that has no name yet.
http://www.squirrel-works.com/5fin.jpg

The Goblin will be replaced by a similar kit that is not a true replica. It's more like a SPEV at this point since I have several parts lots that I don't want to waste.
 
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