Thrustline Smoke & Fire Preview

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Well-Known Member
Jan 19, 2009
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A full review will be posted to EMRR after I get this bird in the air (this month):

I have been attracked to a number of Thrustline's designs and here is yet another one that I added to my fleet.

First, I need to say... DON'T BUY THIS KIT if you are looking for an easy to build and easy to finish rocket!

However, if you are looking for a moderately challenging build and a highly challenging finish (unless you don't care about balsa grains and paint it all one color!) then this kit could be one of your choices.

The Smoke and Fire is a 35" tall, 24mm x 3 clustered rocket with two sets of 5 fins, a transition and center separation that allows the rocket to return in two pieces on two parachutes.

The three 24mm motors come with retention and are housed inside a 2.6" lower section. They have laser cut plywood centering rings.

The parts quality was good with plenty of balsa to cut out the five lower and 5 upper fins. There is a balsa (BT60) nose cone and a balsa transition. There is Kevlar to Elastic shock cords and mylar parachutes. There are no decals.

Instructions, are good with B&W pictures throughout. Didn't like the paper fin templates, would rather have card stock.

Nose weight is required and provided.

Not terribly happy with the 2.6" tube. It is Estes-like thin tubing. I find it to be the weakest component and would like to see a thicker (Loc or AT-like) 2.6" tubing. Probably need to add more nose weight.

Finishing. Well, having to fill&finish the nose cone, the transition, and 10 fins took a lot of time and coats of Plasti-Kote Filler Primer. The transition is hardest due to the grain exposure AND that the upper fins are half glued to the transition.

I painted mine white and black in some funky patterns. Got a bit carried away with the masking. I was going for a NASA look. Eh, it has grown on me.

Looking forward to flying it on 3 C11's first then moving up from there. My finished kit weighs 8.1 oz.




Well-Known Member
Jan 18, 2009
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Fort Myers, FL
Nice job on that Nick.

Sure looks NASA like to me. I want to get one of these, I like a good challenge and I would assume that if I could build an Estes Outlander then heck, I could build this thing.;)


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Jan 25, 2009
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I was the lucky one that got to beta-test this kit for John. I loved the 3x 24mm cluster in the BT-80, but it was a bit of a pain to assemble...I hope John got those kinks worked out. I flew mine on C11-5's and C6-5's with the 'instant' adapter created by the burnt-out C11. :)

Unfortunately, I lost the booster section to a tree in Whitakers, but I've been begging John to send me a replacement BT and MMT kit so I can rebuild it! :)

Kewl paint job! :D



Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2002
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The paint scheme works very well.
As for the BT80 tube, I've never had any problem with it. It's the same tube used in the Mike IX which I've had alot of success with. As far as it being weak, I have not found that to be the case. The motor mount gives excellant rigidity to it.