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#### rklapp

##### NAR# 109557
9V batteries are good, but an expensive way to solve the problem. They don't last very many launches considering their price because of that high internal resistance, and the fact that they're made up of a half-dozen tiny little batteries.
Perhaps a better solution might be:
Eight AA batteries will give you a nice 12V (with fresh batteries), much higher current than 9V batteries, more launches per load of batteries, and rechargeable AA's will likely work fine. It'll also be a lot lighter and easier to deal with than a motorcycle battery.
I tried that. Wasn't durable. Kept losing connection. A single 9v battery hardly puts a dent into the starter but two good quality in series makes them go up in flames. The 9v batteries lasts many launches and cost about $1 each if you buy enough. Admittedly, I need to verify the voltage after last weekend's 14 launches. #### Mike Haberer ##### Well-Known Member TRF Supporter There exist handy little plastic things that let one substitute (my memory is hazy) either two or three cells in parallel, either AA or AAA, and use the combination in place of a single either a C or D cell. I seem to recall they come in two sizes, so maybe one that combines AAA and once that combines AAs? Or one that makes a C and one that makes a D? Or both? Paralleling n cells not only multiplies the capacity by n (which might get 3 AAs into the ballpark of a C) but also divides the internal resistance by n (which makes 3 AAAs better than single AAs, but 2 AAs would still be better). So those might be the best way to go; four or six of those containing whatever number of small cells could pack a big wallop for a respectable length of time. My adapters for C cells use 3 AAAs. The adapters for D cells use 4 AAs. #### rklapp ##### NAR# 109557 9V batteries are good, but an expensive way to solve the problem. They don't last very many launches considering their price because of that high internal resistance, and the fact that they're made up of a half-dozen tiny little batteries. Perhaps a better solution might be: Eight AA batteries will give you a nice 12V (with fresh batteries), much higher current than 9V batteries, more launches per load of batteries, and rechargeable AA's will likely work fine. It'll also be a lot lighter and easier to deal with than a motorcycle battery. Actually, I found this. Might be more stable if I use a rubber band around the battery pack. #### rklapp ##### NAR# 109557 Evening launches during Hawaiian holiday, King Kamehameha Day I'm starting a new thing where I give away items found in the videos, mostly rockets I've launched. The giveaway is at the end of the video. Winds are still strong but light enough to launch in the evening during King Kamehameha Day. As feared, there was a junior league baseball practice, junior league football practice, and a beer league baseball game. We anticipated this so brought several cargo rockets with the LED lights. We forgot to bring the headlamps, used our cellphones instead. Our friend also helped us with launching some of the rockets. Having more battery issues with the GoPro8. The cam has always had issues (which is probably why Costco was selling them for so cheap). To compensate, they include an extra battery and SD card. The battery that was in the cam was DOA and the second lasted for about 15 minutes. At home, I recharged the battery and recorded for 51 minutes before the cam shut off. Perhaps I'm not charging it properly. The funny part is that I always had trouble with the GoPro3 battery and now haven't had any problems with it. The Sony Handycam doesn't film well in the dark so probably should stick with the iPhone8 in low light. The Crossfire was used to test the wind. The Vortico and Chiller used bad motors and sorta worked. I forget how much drag the Green Vortex has so tried it a second time with the C5. With the light fading, we inserted the LED into the Airwalker cargo along with the Flightsketch Mini altimeter. Come to think of it, probably didn't need the pouch since there was no sunlight. With the Biohazard, I wasn't sure why I added vent holes in the sustainer and the acrylic cargo. Now I figured out I did that so I can fit the LED in the cargo and the FS altimeter in the sustainer, LOL. I think it's time to try the E12-4 next time since it only went 480ft. I'm not sure why the Top Flight chute didn't open but hard to tell in the dark. The fin has been reattached. After launching the Hyper Bat, I realized we might have trouble finding the black booster in the dark. I was surprised to see that it landed near me because I didn't hear it. I don't think I stepped on it, but it did break a fin, probably from being crushed in the rocket box. The Fletch Cargo also worked great. 00:00 Intro 00:05 Crossfire clone 4pts 00:54 Vortico and Chiller 3pts 01:37 Green Vortex 108ft 4pts 02:24 Green Vortex 289ft 5pts 03:13 Airwalker 508ft 6pts 04:12 Biohazard 480ft 6pts 06:15 Hyper Bat 5pts 08:31 Fletch Cargo 5pts 09:46 Total 38pts #### BABAR ##### Builds Rockets for NASA TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter Evening launches during Hawaiian holiday, King Kamehameha Day I'm starting a new thing where I give away items found in the videos, mostly rockets I've launched. The giveaway is at the end of the video. Winds are still strong but light enough to launch in the evening during King Kamehameha Day. As feared, there was a junior league baseball practice, junior league football practice, and a beer league baseball game. We anticipated this so brought several cargo rockets with the LED lights. We forgot to bring the headlamps, used our cellphones instead. Our friend also helped us with launching some of the rockets. Having more battery issues with the GoPro8. The cam has always had issues (which is probably why Costco was selling them for so cheap). To compensate, they include an extra battery and SD card. The battery that was in the cam was DOA and the second lasted for about 15 minutes. At home, I recharged the battery and recorded for 51 minutes before the cam shut off. Perhaps I'm not charging it properly. The funny part is that I always had trouble with the GoPro3 battery and now haven't had any problems with it. The Sony Handycam doesn't film well in the dark so probably should stick with the iPhone8 in low light. The Crossfire was used to test the wind. The Vortico and Chiller used bad motors and sorta worked. I forget how much drag the Green Vortex has so tried it a second time with the C5. With the light fading, we inserted the LED into the Airwalker cargo along with the Flightsketch Mini altimeter. Come to think of it, probably didn't need the pouch since there was no sunlight. With the Biohazard, I wasn't sure why I added vent holes in the sustainer and the acrylic cargo. Now I figured out I did that so I can fit the LED in the cargo and the FS altimeter in the sustainer, LOL. I think it's time to try the E12-4 next time since it only went 480ft. I'm not sure why the Top Flight chute didn't open but hard to tell in the dark. The fin has been reattached. After launching the Hyper Bat, I realized we might have trouble finding the black booster in the dark. I was surprised to see that it landed near me because I didn't hear it. I don't think I stepped on it, but it did break a fin, probably from being crushed in the rocket box. The Fletch Cargo also worked great. 00:00 Intro 00:05 Crossfire clone 4pts 00:54 Vortico and Chiller 3pts 01:37 Green Vortex 108ft 4pts 02:24 Green Vortex 289ft 5pts 03:13 Airwalker 508ft 6pts 04:12 Biohazard 480ft 6pts 06:15 Hyper Bat 5pts 08:31 Fletch Cargo 5pts 09:46 Total 38pts Great quotes “That’s More Like It!” “Nope” “I think it deployed before it hit the ground.” Biggest plus is looks like lots of fun. great videos and stills! warning: actually my biggest fear with low power rocketry is poking an eye out bending over the rod. I can see that being an extremely high risk at night. You guys continue to be careful out there! thanks for continuing to post these, they are a treat! #### BABAR ##### Builds Rockets for NASA TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter I always thought clear payload bays were kind of a waste, but your use for altimeters and lights is excellent. #### rklapp ##### NAR# 109557 warning: actually my biggest fear with low power rocketry is poking an eye out bending over the rod. I can see that being an extremely high risk at night. You guys continue to be careful out there! thanks for continuing to post these, they are a treat! I keep losing the caps. I bought a replacement form erockets and that's gone. I have a Nerf dart I can use. Christopher wants the tripod to be higher. The 3/16" rod is already 4' long. I should make Christopher the RSO, Rod Safety Officer. Get it? Last edited: #### BABAR ##### Builds Rockets for NASA TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter I keep losing the caps. I bought a replacement form erockets and that's gone. I have a Nerf dart I can use. Christopher wants the tripod to be higher. The 3/16" rod is already 4' long. I should make Christopher the RSO, Rod Safety Officer. Get it? Nice little product from JonRocket converts a standard camera tripod to fit both 1/8 and 3/16 inch rods. Yes, if you have the tools you can probably make one, I don’t, and for$10 plus tax and shipping (they have other products, including some cool Odd’l Rocket kits)

anyhoo, for anything that doesn’t need a rail, this and a cheap tripod are my go to. Keeps the rod tip well above eye level, assuming you have a decent tripod (mine has a handle you twist to rotate rod from vertical to 90 degree lateral, and of course 360 north east west south north rotation is easy to.) You can obviously adjust the height within the limits of the tripod, for me it is just the right height to do everything from a standing position. Otherwise too much squatting (I do enough of that prepping rockets for second flights of the day— I usually prep them for first flights of the day at home, not a problem since I don’t do high power.)

as I said, I HAVEN’T heard of it happening, but I have had some personal near misses bending over to place or fix a rocket on the pad when I was using Estes pads.

#### boomtube-mk2

##### Well-Known Member
When do we get square, reloadable motors?

D12^2-6 for instance.

#### rklapp

Nice little product from JonRocket converts a standard camera tripod to fit both 1/8 and 3/16 inch rods. Yes, if you have the tools you can probably make one, I don’t, and for $10 plus tax and shipping (they have other products, including some cool Odd’l Rocket kits) anyhoo, for anything that doesn’t need a rail, this and a cheap tripod are my go to. Keeps the rod tip well above eye level, assuming you have a decent tripod (mine has a handle you twist to rotate rod from vertical to 90 degree lateral, and of course 360 north east west south north rotation is easy to.) You can obviously adjust the height within the limits of the tripod, for me it is just the right height to do everything from a standing position. Otherwise too much squatting (I do enough of that prepping rockets for second flights of the day— I usually prep them for first flights of the day at home, not a problem since I don’t do high power.) as I said, I HAVEN’T heard of it happening, but I have had some personal near misses bending over to place or fix a rocket on the pad when I was using Estes pads. That's what we use. I place a piece of tape on the 1/8" end to keep it from wobbling. I'm wondering how long until the screw deteriorates. It takes the brunt of the motor blast. I should take it to the hardware store to find replacements. I also use sanding disks to protect the blast plate. Someone suggested not making the tripod too high or might become unstable with large rockets, probably in high winds. I always thought clear payload bays were kind of a waste, but your use for altimeters and lights is excellent. Thanks. For the altimeter, I drilled small vent holes in the acrylic. I added the payload to the Biohazard and vent holes in the sustainer. Afterwards, I thought that was overly redundant. Then on Friday, I realized that the payload is too small to hold the lights and altimeter so that was convenient. When do we get square, reloadable motors? D12^2-6 for instance. There's a reference in there somewhere but not sure what it is. #### kuririn ##### BARGeezer TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter When I was a kid I made a safety rod cap from a spent engine casing. Ream out the nozzle enough so that the rod can pass through. Cap the other end. I used a mixture of torn tissue paper and white glue. Then paint a bright color, like red or fluoro orange. I think I got the idea from an Estes newsletter. BTW love those new Estes orange Sparky motors in your night launch video. #### Back_at_it ##### Well-Known Member I keep losing the caps. I bought a replacement form erockets and that's gone. I have a Nerf dart I can use. Christopher wants the tripod to be higher. The 3/16" rod is already 4' long. I should make Christopher the RSO, Rod Safety Officer. Get it? That was a fear of mine as I've seen a few close calls. One guy got it up his nose and bleed like crazy for a a pretty long while. My solution was simple. Build a launch pad where the top of the launch rod is over your head. I simply used a cheap saw horse and fly off that. When I'm flying out in AZ, I have a PVC setup that puts the rods above face level as well. You can pick up 36 and 48 inch rods in 1/8: and 3/16" if you need a little more length. I wouldn't go beyond 48" with the 1/8: rod. #### BABAR ##### Builds Rockets for NASA TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter That's what we use. I place a piece of tape on the 1/8" end to keep it from wobbling. I'm wondering how long until the screw deteriorates. It takes the brunt of the motor blast. I should take it to the hardware store to find replacements. I also use sanding disks to protect the blast plate. I put the plate above the adeptor #### Greg Furtman ##### Well-Known Member TRF Supporter warning: actually my biggest fear with low power rocketry is poking an eye out bending over the rod. I can see that being an extremely high risk at night. You guys continue to be careful out there! thanks for continuing to post these, they are a treat! I built a tripod that puts the end of the rod at about 6'. I did that as I was tired of getting down on a knee to hook up the launch controller wires to the ignitor. I'm 70, had back problems and need a hip replacement. But I still play with LPRs. #### Greg Furtman ##### Well-Known Member TRF Supporter @rklapp I bought an old Quest Courier kit that came with a clear two piece egg lofting nosecone. (The newer Couriers have a black nosecone.) So I bought some self blinking RGB LEDs, some copper tape, a couple of wide popsicle sticks, and made a Night Flyer. #### Greg Furtman ##### Well-Known Member TRF Supporter BTW love those new Estes orange Sparky motors in your night launch video. @kuririn I went to the Estes site & couldn't find anything about orange sparky motors. Are all of Estes motors orange sparky at night? #### BABAR ##### Builds Rockets for NASA TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter @rklapp I bought an old Quest Courier kit that came with a clear two piece egg lofting nosecone. (The newer Couriers have a black nosecone.) So I bought some self blinking RGB LEDs, some copper tape, a couple of wide popsicle sticks, and made a Night Flyer. That’s blinkin’ cool! #### neil_w ##### Doldrum dweller TRF Supporter #### BABAR ##### Builds Rockets for NASA TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter When I was a kid I made a safety rod cap from a spent engine casing. Ream out the nozzle enough so that the rod can pass through. Cap the other end. I used a mixture of torn tissue paper and white glue. Then paint a bright color, like red or fluoro orange. Good idea. I just find it very difficult to remember to put the thing back on. Shoot, for me it’s hard enough to remember to pull the launch key on my Pratt Go-Box after ignition….er, sorry Estes, after “starting.” #### rklapp ##### NAR# 109557 That was a fear of mine as I've seen a few close calls. One guy got it up his nose and bleed like crazy for a a pretty long while. My solution was simple. Build a launch pad where the top of the launch rod is over your head. I simply used a cheap saw horse and fly off that. When I'm flying out in AZ, I have a PVC setup that puts the rods above face level as well. You can pick up 36 and 48 inch rods in 1/8: and 3/16" if you need a little more length. I wouldn't go beyond 48" with the 1/8: rod. View attachment 468965 View attachment 468966 I've been having issues with losing the launch rods around the house, so I bought several pairs from Home Depot. The 1/8" is 3' because I think the 4' is too wobbly. #### kuririn ##### BARGeezer TRF Lifetime Supporter TRF Supporter The Home Depot steel rods need to be kept clean and coated with a film of light machine oil or WD-40. Otherwise, like garden tools, they will rust. Been looking for a local source of stainless steel rods, but no cigar. Let me know if you find any. #### Greg Furtman ##### Well-Known Member TRF Supporter The Home Depot steel rods need to be kept clean and coated with a film of light machine oil or WD-40. Otherwise, like garden tools, they will rust. Been looking for a local source of stainless steel rods, but no cigar. Let me know if you find any. @kuririn Do you have Fastenals in Hawaii? They carry 3' lengths of 304 1/8th inch stainless. #### rklapp ##### NAR# 109557 The Home Depot steel rods need to be kept clean and coated with a film of light machine oil or WD-40. Otherwise, like garden tools, they will rust. Been looking for a local source of stainless steel rods, but no cigar. Let me know if you find any. Hobbyco has piano wire but in 3' lengths at$15 each. I've asked music stores and no one has piano wire that I've found. The HD rods are about \$3. I have Ballistol oil which is excellent for rust prevention (especially gun barrels in the tropics). I usually wipe the rod with talc before launches.

@kuririn I went to the Estes site & couldn't find anything about orange sparky motors. Are all of Estes motors orange sparky at night?
In the video with the Green Vortex, you can see that the C5 has much more sparks than the B6. The Q-jets have a bright flame but virtually no sparks so not as fun in the dark. The B4 in the Crossfire had no sparks but could be because it wasn't dark enough.

Put a cell phone on the ground about a foot away from the launcher and set to the highest frame rate you can.

#### kuririn

##### BARGeezer
TRF Supporter
@kuririn Do you have Fastenals in Hawaii? They carry 3' lengths of 304 1/8th inch stainless.

Thanks!
I found a couple of branches nearby.
Will check it out.

#### rklapp

##### NAR# 109557
Citation Patriot clone with 24mm and an additional modification. I used Jimz new decal plans and Micro Set/Sol. I think this was my first cloned TTW fins. I used @James Duffy's styrene technique on the balsa fins.

More detail on the fins. My cockatiels have already sampled the fins and didn’t find the styrene appetizing. “Serves you right you mangy animals.”

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#### rklapp

##### NAR# 109557
My Antar is also ready. I know the color scheme is backwards. It’s a decent 5 foot paint job. I papered the fins.

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#### neil_w

##### Doldrum dweller
TRF Supporter
Looks great from New Jersey, so successful ~5000 mile paint job.

#### rklapp

##### NAR# 109557
Looks great from New Jersey, so successful ~5000 mile paint job.
It helps to squint.

Did you see the launch of the Biohazard we did at night? I'm not sure why the chute didn't open fully. Some tape and spit and good as new...

#### rklapp

##### NAR# 109557
Looks good...so you built 2 kits? Can not wait for launch report.
Thanks. No, just front and back. The box color scheme is ridiculous. Don't follow the instructions if you want it to look like the box. You gotta go to the expert if you want that.