Sunward Interplanetary Shuttle

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FooBag

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Back while Sunward was doing their 25% off sale, I picked up the Interplanetary Shuttle kit as I liked it's lines. I just started working on it today finally.

First off, we have the contents:



The directions start you off with assembling the motor mount. It's a standard mount, similar to all others. The centering rings fit over the tube nicely, but were a bit loose when I test-fitted them in the body tube. Nothing some extra glue can't fix! :D

 

FooBag

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Next off was separating the laser cut fins from their balsa sheets. The fins were cut very nicely and matched exactly. I sanded an airfoil on all the fins.



Although the kit came with a very long elastic shock cord, I decided to add a short kevlar leader first so that I could anchor it to the engine mount.



Here's the engine mount installed in the body tube. The extremely long shock cord can be seen here.

 

FooBag

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By this point, I had completely started skipping all over the place in the directions. I next decided to pack the nose cone with clay. Sunward included more than enough clay to do this. I filled the nose cone 100% and still had a large piece left over.



Next, I started working on the central body tube piece, what I would equate to the passenger's area. I discovered one of the balsa centering rings had cracked in the package. However, this was a simple repair.



When I went to install the centering rings, I discovered than they did not slid inside the large tube, but instead were designed to be glued onto the ends. They were cut to exactly the correct size. Here's a picture of the assembled piece.



Next up, I glued this to the main body tube. This is as far as I got as I want to fill and sand the fins before going any further.

 

jj94

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Nice build but...balsa centering rings?
 

FooBag

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Nice build but...balsa centering rings?
The motor mount centering rings are the standard carboard, its just the ones for the external tube that are not. They will be locked in place and supported by the fins when they are installed.
 

jj94

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The motor mount centering rings are the standard carboard, its just the ones for the external tube that are not. They will be locked in place and supported by the fins when they are installed.
Oh. Ok, so there will be additional reinforcement. Balsa centering rings are a bad idea when strength is really needed.
 

Peartree

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And never EVER tie your recovery system to anything made of balsa...


...at least not if you really want to recover it.


Oops. Been there. Done that.
 
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