Model Rockets, the hobby

Discussion in 'Off-Topic' started by Bill_Marsden, May 29, 2011.

  1. Bill_Marsden

    Bill_Marsden Thread Starter Moderator Staff Member

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    When I was 9 or so a neighbor flew a model rocked. I enjoyed it, but didn't get into it for about a year or so.

    For those who don't know, model rockets are commercial kits and parts. They use mostly cardboard and balsa, just like model airplanes. Like model air planes they are scale models, and are basically the real thing.

    Companies like Estes make and sell the parts, including solid propellant (black powder) engines with a time delay smoke/parachute ejection system.

    I had terrific fun with them until I started really noticing girls. I tried to get my kids into them with no joy, it must be a geek thing.
  2. strantor

    strantor Well-Known Member

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    Me too. My rocket caught on fire once so I taped my remaining engine to a curtain rod and set it up on the stand. lit it off, and with all theatrics it could muster, it flailed and flopped around in the air, chasing me across the field. It was so much more exciting than the rockets, that I abandoned the rockets and started strapping rocket engines to everyday household objects. A rocket powered tonka truck shooting under a moving school bus and exploding was alot cooler than watching the rocket go up in the air over and over again.
  3. magnet18

    magnet18 Well-Known Member

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    I used to shoot one or two off every now and then when I was little with my dad.
    I always thought it was fun and got a kick out of it, but it didn't catch me to the point that I'm still doing it.
    I do still have a box laying around with all the stuff in it though.
  4. magnet18

    magnet18 Well-Known Member

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    About the explosions, I never said it was a good idea to make engines, I just said it could be done. We've mixed up the material that goes in the solid state engines in chem before, and there are people out there who make their own engines, but those re the ones who have been using model rockets for decades and know what their doing.

    It's an explosion, and things go wrong very easily.
  5. shortbus

    shortbus Senior Member

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    Any one here remember "Jetex" rocket motors? Before the Estes there was Jetex. A small aluminum can with a hole in the lid that you put a fuel pellet in. It was ignited with a small firecracker fuse that came with the pellets. Big fun in the late 1950 early 1960's! You put them on model airplanes, cars and boats.

    http://jetex.org/history/heyday-sebel.html
  6. Rbeckett

    Rbeckett Member

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    Jetex was a lot of fun back in the day. We used them to help get our RC and sail planes airborn. The jetex with a high start was just the ticket for a 4-5 hundred foot launch. Sure made finding a thermal more enjoyable when you had a little height to start out with.
    Bob
  7. Bill_Marsden

    Bill_Marsden Thread Starter Moderator Staff Member

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    I saw one once, didn't seem to have the omph for a vertical take off, I was under the impression it was for model air planes. Nowdays electric motors and batteries are light enough to do the job, but not back then.

    Best ignition system I have ever soon is totally obsolete. You used a old style Estes fuse wire (also obsolete) going into the engine and a magnesium flash tapped to the engine. Worked every time, and was great for clustering engines. I hated when 1 of 2 or 2 of 3 engines went off, it was guaranteed to screw up the model every time.
  8. magnet18

    magnet18 Well-Known Member

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    Yea, I've noticed that it can be a pain when trying to light 5 bottle rockets tied together at the same time :rolleyes:
    Generally up-sizing from a lighter to a blowtorch does the trick ;)
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