What do you like most about this hobby?

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AfterBurners

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Thought this would be a fun thread and have everyone share some things that they enjoy most about this hobby.

For me I think it constantly holds different challenges at different stages from Model rocketry all the way to the upper high power levels. Its seems no matter how many rockets I build I always learn something new and up until recently just figured out how to lay down a half way decent paint job, but without fail just about every build I do I always seem to "Goober" something. Whether its during the build process, prep or paint. Always something. Then again I forget all about it when the rocket I built boost straight off the pad and comes back with a few scratches or being dragged across the desert playa ...so much for a perfect paint job ...:):)
 

Incongruent

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I like the challenges too, but what I like that's seemingly unique to the hobby is the community; people in model rocketry always seem helpful, knowledgeable, kind, and are just fun to be around.


-Tony

P.S. I also know what Matt Fletcher's (blackbrandt) favorite things are...
Maybe.
Bong in the winter and blue motor cases
Children at launches with bright smiling faces
AQM Jayhawks with big orange wings
These are a few of my favorite things




4F black powder in Wisconsin state parks
Thermite igniters in CTI skidmarks
18 inch parachutes tied on with strings
These are a few of my favorite things




(chorus)
When the fins strip
When the chute burns
When I zipper G-10
I simply remember my favorite things
And then I go launch again




PVC tripods and fields without big trees
Wading in water way up over my knees
White Lightning propellant and Buna-N O-rings
These are a few of my favorite things




Stainless steel quick links and launch pads in straight rows
Aerotech reloads and giant mosquitos
N-powered mach shreds and gravel paint dings
These are a few of my favorite things




(chorus)
 

neil_w

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I enjoy designing and building the rockets. Particularly in the realm of LPR, I just find the materials (balsa, paper, etc.) really fun to work with. And the end product (rockets) fires my imagination more than any other category of model. There is a seemingly endless array of techniques to master, and design styles to try to incorporate. I enjoy it so much I'm even willing to put up with the sanding (usually). :p

The extremely supportive community of rocketeers is a huge part of it as well. If TRF existed back in the 70's, I might not have dropped out of the hobby in the first place.
 

Zeus-cat

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I launch with a great group of guys. That is the best part of it for me.
 

Onebadhawk

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The thought process leading up to a complex build...
The satisfaction of dialing in a rocket...
And by far most of all,,, camaraderie ......

Teddy
 

dhbarr

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Constraints. I know that seems weird maybe, but having a clearly defined space to play in definitely helps me think more carefully which in turn spurs me to be creative.
 

fyrwrxz

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It's the brotherhood of rocketeers. Yeah, maybe for the most part we are geeks and nerds but it's my comfort zone. It's as great to see the excitement of an eight-year-old as it is to see an L3 fly his umpteenth "M" motor and still be jazzed about it. I've made great friends over the years and it's always rewarding when the more experienced flyers willingly share tips and tricks they've employed to get around a problem you may have. As much as I love building and even flying, it's the folks here and on the playa that make it fun.
 

K'Tesh

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I love the sharing of resources, knowledge, and ideas that this hobby has. The creativity that shown by others, and the encouragement shown by those who share this common interest.

I also love the smell of BP and AP in the morning.
 

Incongruent

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Constraints. I know that seems weird maybe, but having a clearly defined space to play in definitely helps me think more carefully which in turn spurs me to be creative.
I agree, having rules gives you a guide and a chance to reach the limit. A free rein sometimes leaves no place to start and no place to end.

I specialize in finding loopholes.
 

K'Tesh

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I agree, having rules gives you a guide and a chance to reach the limit. A free rein sometimes leaves no place to start and no place to end.

I specialize in finding loopholes.
You should love my OpenRocket files then... Loopholes galore.
 

georgegassaway

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The camaraderie, friendships, seeing lots of neat rockets, FLYING the rockets, all great aspects of this hobby. And I sure like to do contest flying too.

But since the question is what I like the MOST, I have to go with what is at the core of my interest. Designing models and seeing them fly successfully. I do NOT like the building, but it is a necessarily evil step between the designing and the flying. And sometimes the designing goes sideways mid-build as some issue comes up during assembly, or after-build when a design flaw is discovered in test flying, requiring a design fix and more testing to confirm the fix works.

Like right now I have a design project underway, close to a prototype test flight very soon. I have not spent nearly as much time building it as I have THINKING about it (first thought about building this model over a year and a half ago……or in another way about 46 years ago) And once I wanted to finally begin the project and start to build….. lots of preparatory time to really do that actual design, determine all the components needed, figure out the build sequence, how to address some specific design detail that had been a general concept to be finalized in more detail “now” before the next step in planned assembly could be planned out, and so on. Lots of those general concept things that had to be figured out.... even where to make it most fragile so in a hard landing/crash, something "easier" to fix would break rather than risk breaking a much more critical and harder to repair part of the structure. I will say that the nitty-gritty design details like that are not a lot of "fun" either, projects like this are always more fun to think of in the big picture sense than the very specific details.

Ironically this particular project isn’t rocket powered but it’s a model of a “rocket”, that will fly.

So, I’ve gone past most of the “design” portion of this project, into the building part which I wish I could press a button to do (But I do have to admit that while I do not like building, I do appreciate that it is something I built myself, once it is done. But in the middle of mid-build….. ugh). And hopefully, the payoff end of the project later, successful flying of the design project. Since it is not fun to design something that in the end does NOT work out, or maybe works technically but flies poorly.

What the heck is it? Well, I’ll start a proper build thread about it on TRF soon, and have mentioned it a bit elsewhere. Here’s a pic as of today, with a dummy profile “upper part”, sitting on top of the lower part of the model that has all the critical design parts that will (hopefully) make it fly. So, a Quadcopter, electric motor and propeller powered, but one of the most important “rocket vehicles” in history.

So, sure, I could buy a Star Wars Millennium Falcon Quadcopter, for example. But what I have wanted, since I got into model rocketry in 1970 and came up with an “ultimate dream model”, was a model of the Lunar Module that I could fly by R/C, hover, and land. For 1970 that was an insanely impossible model to even think might be possible to do. And while in theory a extremely fine-throttleable hybrid for hobbyists could maybe be made, lots of hobby dollars and time, and someone else’s expertise to make that happen someday. But what was even more farfetched at that time was to be able to have R/C small and light enough to be able to control such a model. And most critically have the ability to keep itself level, using technology that in 1970 would have cost millions and weighed dozens of pounds (for the Gyro-based guidance system itself) instead of 15 grams for $30. Back when a “computer” would require its own room in a house, not fit in your pants pocket or on your wrist.

So…. to end such a long answer to such a great short question…… its the combination of designing something of my own, that ends up flying well, that I like the most.

Sometimes it’s complex stuff like this new project…. (temporary dummy profile on top, to be replaced by scaled-up cardboard model patterns, printed on thick poster paper, cut out and assembled for proper 3D shape)



And sometimes it just takes a few minutes of designing and “building” something simple. Even when the designing part is more like seeing something in a store and realizing: "Hey, that might be a pretty good conversion for Flying Saucer"

 
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Incongruent

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The camaraderie, friendships, seeing lots of neat rockets, FLYING the rockets, all great aspects of this hobby. And I sure like to do contest flying too.

But since the question is what I like the MOST, I have to go with what is at the core of my interest. Designing models and seeing them fly successfully. I do NOT like the building, but it is a necessarily evil step between the designing and the flying. And sometimes the designing goes sideways mid-build as some issue comes up during assembly, or after-build when a design flaw is discovered in test flying, requiring a design fix and more testing to confirm the fix works.

Like right now I have a design project underway, close to a prototype test flight very soon. I have not spent nearly as much time building it as I have THINKING about it (first thought about building this model over a year and a half ago……or in another way about 46 years ago) And once I wanted to finally begin the project and start to build….. lots of preparatory time to really do that actual design, determine all the components needed, figure out the build sequence, how to address some specific design detail that had been a general concept to be finalized in more detail “now” before the next step in planned assembly could be planned out, and so on. Lots of those general concept things that had to be figured out.... even where to make it most fragile so in a hard landing/crash, something "easier" to fix would break rather than risk breaking a much more critical and harder to repair part of the structure. I will say that the nitty-gritty design details like that are not a lot of "fun" either, projects like this are always more fun to think of in the big picture sense than the very specific details.

Ironically this particular project isn’t rocket powered but it’s a model of a “rocket”, that will fly.

So, I’ve gone past most of the “design” portion of this project, into the being part which I wish I old press a button to do (But I do have to admit that while I do not like building, I do appreciate that it is something I built myself, once it is done. But in the middle of mid-build….. ugh). And hopefully, the payoff end of the project later, successful flying of the design project. Since it is not fun to design something that in the end does NOT work out, or maybe works technically but flies poorly.

What the heck is it? Well, I’ll start a proper build thread about it on TRF soon, and have mentioned it a bit elsewhere. Here’s a pic as of today, with a dummy profile “upper part”, sitting on top of the lower part of the model that has all the critical design parts that will (hopefully) make it fly. So, a Quadcopter, electric motor and propeller powered, but one of the most important “rocket vehicles” in history.

So, sure, I could buy a Star Wars Millennium Falcon Quadcopter, for example. But what I have wanted, since I got into model rocketry in 1970 and came up with an “ultimate dream model”, was a model of the Lunar Module that I could fly by R/C, hover, and land. For 1970 that was an insanely impossible model to even think might be possible to do. And while in theory a extremely fine-throttleable hybrid for hobbyists could maybe be made, lots of hobby dollars and time, and someone else’s expertise to make that happen someday. But what was even more farfetched at that time was to be able to have R/C small and light enough to be able to control such a model. And most critically have the ability to keep itself level, using technology that in 1970 would have cost millions and weighed dozens of pounds (for the Gyro-based guidance system itself) instead of 15 grams for $30. Back when a “computer” would require its own room in a house, not fit in your pants pocket or on your wrist.

So…. to end such a long answer to such a great short question…… its the combination of designing something of my own, that ends up flying well, that I like the most.

Sometimes it’s complex stuff like this new project…. (temporary dummy profile on top, to be replaced by scaled-up cardboard model patterns, printed on thick poster paper, cut out and assembled for proper 3D shape)



And sometimes it just takes a few minutes of designing and “building” something simple. Even when the designing part is more like seeing something in a store and realizing: "Hey, that might be a pretty good conversion for Flying Saucer"

I think John Dyer (in DARS) made one with the plastic web too! Dollar Store?
Powered on booster motors?

Great Minds think alike...
Cheap *ahem* cost effective *ahem* minds do too!


That's a really good looking lunar lander quad-copter.
 

Incongruent

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Trying...really....hard....to.....find.....loophole......in...........comment.............GAH!!!
So_there's_an_extra_space_that_shouldn't_be_there_and_now_spacebar_won't_work.

Edit: It's working now. Just hit enter. Works in other tabs, and new TRF tabs. It was only that comment I think.
 
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neil_w

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...a lot...
George I thought for sure your answer was going to be "typing". :neener:

Designing models and seeing them fly successfully.
This made me realize that I kind of missed an important aspect in my original answer: creating a finished product that matches my original idea. For scratch builds, that means (for now) designing something in OR down to the smallest detail (including paint job) and then eventually ending up with a rocket in my hands that matches it. I get a huge thrill from that.

When I build a kit and finish it according to the facecard I get a similar satisfaction, except I've outsourced the design part.

Like right now I have a design project underway, close to a prototype test flight very soon. I have not spent nearly as much time building it as I have THINKING about it
<...>
And once I wanted to finally begin the project and start to build&#8230;.. lots of preparatory time to really do that actual design, determine all the components needed, figure out the build sequence...
My builds, although simple in the grand scheme of things, proceed this way as well. Sometimes the planning and thinking about the build sequence gets tedious but when it all comes together it's worth it.

BTW I like typing too.:grin:
 

K'Tesh

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georgegassaway

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George I thought for sure your answer was going to be "typing". :neener:
Heh! Yeah.... I knew that was a long post for such a "simple" question, although I did want to give a really good example of what I was referring to since I'm right in the middle of a big one right now.

But typing is like "building" to me. I don't like the typing either (too many typos, and in recent years with improved (?) software.....too many "autocorrects").

The typing is a necessary evil between what I want to say (the designing/thinking aspect), and posting a completed message ("successful flight"). :)
 

Nytrunner

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May favorite part is throwing pointy tubes as far up as possible by making them shoot hot gas out the back. Then trying to get the tube back and do it again. And if I get good enough at it, I can use even more gas to throw much bigger tubes a lot higher.

Real talk; as a kid that grew up to be an engineer, I've never really been thrilled with collecting toys or figures that pretty much just sit there. The hobby is a great way to have fun while improving my hands-on and mental skills as well as interact with some pretty unique people I would have never met otherwise.
 

Incongruent

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pointy tubes
Parabolic nose cone discrimination! Big Bertha says you're a bully!

I like making rockets that launch and things that move, but I think the build is the important part, most (or a significant portion) of what you buy in a rocket kit is the experience, right? Sometimes making a static display model can be worth it if it's the only way you'll put forth the effort to get a mirror quality paint finish. And unscratched rockets are much more bragging points.

I like both. I'm not trying to change your views, just offering my thoughts.
I'm not sure if by the collecting comment you meant pre-made things because if so, I absolutely agree.

Put a comma between pretty and unique.

"Shoot hot gas out the back"
Did your pointy tubes go to Taco Bell?

Otherwise, ditto.


-Tony
 

TopRamen

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The friends I've made here on the forum have really been what I like most about the hobby I guess.
Unlike any of my other hobbies, here people go above and beyond when it comes to giving me guidance and even parts and stuff.
I try to pay it forward when I see someone new asking about things that I once asked about, like fiberglass cloth for example.
 

Nytrunner

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Parabolic nose cone discrimination! Big Bertha says you're a bully!
I reject being an inferred shapist! For that matter, I believe I possess one of the few 5.5" elliptical nosecones in existence. (Shout out to Mike Stoop for digging that out of Madcow's Rocketry Warehouse acquisitions for me)
elliptical 5.5 nosecone.jpg
I'm planning to stick it on a highly modified Loc Cruiser for my L2. If 'm really ambitious, I'll chop and slot the stock nosecone to make it a quasi-tomahawk tailcone on the back.
 

hornet driver

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For me, the best part of this hobby is all of you. We all come from different walks of life,we're different ages, different religions, but we all have one thing in common--we enjoy the hell out of life and rockets are part of that! I'm lucky enough to learn from all of you and on occasion give back a little of my experience.
 

AfterBurners

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I reject being an inferred shapist! For that matter, I believe I possess one of the few 5.5" elliptical nosecones in existence. (Shout out to Mike Stoop for digging that out of Madcow's Rocketry Warehouse acquisitions for me)
View attachment 304640
I'm planning to stick it on a highly modified Loc Cruiser for my L2. If 'm really ambitious, I'll chop and slot the stock nosecone to make it a quasi-tomahawk tailcone on the back.
I like your Patriot did you paint the black band around the fins or is that some type of decal?
 

Incongruent

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I reject being an inferred shapist! For that matter, I believe I possess one of the few 5.5" elliptical nosecones in existence. (Shout out to Mike Stoop for digging that out of Madcow's Rocketry Warehouse acquisitions for me)
View attachment 304640
I'm planning to stick it on a highly modified Loc Cruiser for my L2. If I'm really ambitious, I'll chop and slot the stock nosecone to make it a quasi-tomahawk tailcone on the back.
Ooooooh! :drool:
Balsa, right?

And I possess the only 33mm CZ-7 payload fairing nose cone cut and shaped by a monkey!
The sentence also holds true if you take out the last o, n, k, and y!

[No pics... Too much shame.]

I'm planning to stick it into the rocket it was made for. If I'm really ambitious, I'll try and fix it.
 

Nytrunner

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I like your Patriot did you paint the black band around the fins or is that some type of decal?
Thanks, that was me learning how to mask. I didn't exactly prime or follow proper recoat curetimes properly the first time around. So after the cert I went berserk with sandpaper, primer, and got a much better result. Not perfection by a long shot, but I'm happy with how it looks and plan to fly it again, so a mirror finish isn't what I want to spend the time on (I've got that ventris and leviathan to finish)
 

Incongruent

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Fiberglass actually. The seam on the outside appears to be two joined halves, and it looks like some hand layup on the inside for reinforcing (lots of leftover excess epoxy spots)

Monkey?
Oops.
It looked like extremely filled balsa to me, but I fly low power as of now, so...
I have seen fiberglass nose cones, though. Just haven't smelled them, stared at them, tasted them, slept with them, etc.

Monkey = (monkey without the o, n, k, and y,) making nose cone.

Me has bad craftsmanship. That's all I meant by that.
 

Steven

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I enjoy buying the models of my childhood that meant something to me either as a model I possessed, or a model I could never afford. I've pretty well purchased them all such as the Centuri 1/45th scale Little Joe II, Centuri Saturn 1b, Centuri Saturn V, Centuri X-24 Bug, Centuri Mercury Redstone, Centuri Stellar Hercules, Estes K36 Saturn V, Estes 2157 Saturn V, Estes 1/100th scale Saturn 1b, Estes K39 yellow tag Saturn V, Estes Mercury Atlas, Estes Maxi Brute Honest John, Estes Maxi Brute V-2, Cox Honest John, Cox Nike Zeus etc.
 
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