Vaughn Brothers ASP

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Well-Known Member
Feb 19, 2009
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When I'm working on larger projects, I often build a MPR or LPR kit in parallel. It is an efficient use of extra epoxy. I did so again this last week as I was modifying and building kits for Midwest Power 7 so I thought I'd share...

This is a vintage Vaughn Brothers ASP kit I purchased at a local swap meet. It's a pretty nice kit. I was impressed with the metal cable shock cord mount and the G10 fins, both upgrades you don't normally see on a LPR kit (note, this kit does list OOP G motors as "recommended", but with a 24mm MMT, I consider it a LPR kit).

Also the instructions were more than adequate. Four pages worth with some nice diagrams/layouts.


Given that the fins extend all the way to the aft end, I decided to cut the fin slots out completely and build the fin can externally. I did this for another reason... I didn't really feel comfortable with the tape motor retention method in the instructions, so I added my own. A piece of brass stock extending past the aft end with a small hole. Retention is accomplished via a small solid wire thread through the hole and hooked onto the end of the 24-40 case. (Again, note in the picture the metal cable shock cord attachment provided in the kit.)

Of course, using a thin cable as an LPR shock cord mount, although generally a nice upgrade, can pose problems with easy zippering. So in addition to reinforcing the booster tube with CA, I built my own miniature version of the Giant Leap Fireball out of a piece of cotton ball and a strip of heat shrink.

Note also that I replaced the provided elastic in the kit with kevlar cord that can be seen attached to the end of the cable loop in the picture.

One final note on the recovery. The kit came with a nice red 18" ripstop nylon parachute. I kept it in my stash, but in doing a quick simulation, the 18" is way too big for this kit (I don't like too walk to far), so I substituted a LOC-Precision 14" ripstop nylon (also out of my stash). Kinda like the purple too.

The kit has a generously-sized payload. Typical bulkhead mount. I added a small wood block on the inside of the bulkhead to better attach the eye screw. I also generously filled the bulkhead outer area with epoxy both to protect from heat and aid in keeping the eye screw closed under stress.

I attached nosecone with two 2-56 nylon screws (versus gluing it as recommended in the instructions) to provide ongoing access to the payload area.


Now putting things together was pretty simple. Slid the fin can into the slotted booster tube along with some generous application of epoxy.

Fillets were added. Also the launch lugs were attached. The kit had one 2" lug and recommended attaching it half way up the booster. To add stability, I split the launch lug and attached one half on the aft end and one about 2/3rds up the booster length.

Below is a picture after the application of fillets, lugs and the first coat of primer.

A couple of shots with paint along with its inspiration (still need to add ring at base of nosecone; but not exact anyway as I use navy instead of black).

Fore shot.jpg

Aft shot.jpg

Finally got around to doing the clear coat (along with some other mods/repairs being completed on larger rockets for Midwest Power), so here's two final pics with all detailing and finishing complete. (It's really hard to tell just how nice the finish looks with these pics.)