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  #1  
Old 09-01-2015, 01:18 AM
jonrev's Avatar
jonrev jonrev is offline
Do you own space? No - NAYSA does.
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: 60030
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Default "Relapse" (Estes Eliminator)

Story time... I got halfway serious with rockets back in 2003 (after building a Wizard in 2001 and letting it sit for two years), and kept them flying until work and other projects had taken-over my time by 2007. Five years ago I had another very brief stint after breaking some winter boredom with the construction of a Der Red Max, and a couple other kits that followed while first-experimenting with shoving cameras into rockets, but by summer I had lost interest again after a road was paved through my flying site.

Jump ahead some years; I dug a couple rockets out for display after discovering the occasionally-intense pros and cons of Chicago's climate were ruining the finish of some of my 2010-builds. My kid-nephew took notice, so for his birthday I got him an Alpha III and walked him through building it. Last month we finally got around to launching it at a new flying site (the undeveloped lot where Lakehurst Mall once-stood); I de-mothballed and flew a few more of my own builds because why not. Despite the scaled-down arsenal (about half of them - mostly plastic crap/fly and forgets - remain in storage): I'm officially calling it a comeback.


Photography is a long-running gig (and now side-profession) of mine, and one of the rockets I've always had among my film camera collection (instead of storage with the rockets) was my Astrocam - an RTF version rated for 200iso. Awhile ago I picked up some fresh 110 film from Lomography for testing, so when my nephew and I went to fly I broke the stuff out before it expired. On its second flight the booster decided to GTFO and separated from the camera - fortunately I was able to recover the latter from atop a nearby Dunkin Donuts.


Lacking a booster and left with many exposures to go... enter my first build in five years: an eBay-bought Estes Eliminator...


Reminder of Estes' marketing logic. But hey; now my Challenger-1 clone has a parachute after 5 years. I'm retaining the 18" nylon chute from before, so the plastic 24-er went on my Maxi Alpha 3.


Straightforward build except I abhorred the deep tube spirals, so before assembly I sanded, filled, sanded, primed, sanded, primed, sanded, and painted-painted the body tubes and launch lugs.


I also wanted to avoid a repeat of the old booster's fate, so I grabbed a length of Kevlar cord and will be using this method from here-on instead of the paper/glue mount on future builds. I cut a notch into the green engine mount ring for the cord to lay flush.


...and our finished product. Purple was also not my thing, but semi-gloss Rusto was, and in the end gave an almost-matte finish that matched the Astrocam nicely. Not bothering with the stickers, this one's going to be more function than form, anyway.
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[jonrevProjects]

In Progress:
| Astron Scrambler resto | Firehawk resto | Mercury Redstone capsule #4 | Fiero scratch-build |

Planned:
| Renegade clone | Interceptor-E | Fat-Cat Copy Cat | Astro-Roid Land Camera |

Last edited by jonrev : 09-01-2015 at 01:47 AM.
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  #2  
Old 09-01-2015, 01:55 AM
A Fish Named Wallyum's Avatar
A Fish Named Wallyum A Fish Named Wallyum is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Ft. Thomas, KY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jonrev
Story time... I got halfway serious with rockets back in 2003 (after building a Wizard in 2001 and letting it sit for two years), and kept them flying until work and other projects had taken-over my time by 2007. Five years ago I had another very brief stint after breaking some winter boredom with the construction of a Der Red Max, and a couple other kits that followed while first-experimenting with shoving cameras into rockets, but by summer I had lost interest again after a road was paved through my flying site.

Jump ahead some years; I dug a couple rockets out for display after discovering the occasionally-intense pros and cons of Chicago's climate were ruining the finish of some of my 2010-builds. My kid-nephew took notice, so for his birthday I got him an Alpha III and walked him through building it. Last month we finally got around to launching it at a new flying site (the undeveloped lot where Lakehurst Mall once-stood); I de-mothballed and flew a few more of my own builds because why not. Despite the scaled-down arsenal (about half of them - mostly plastic crap/fly and forgets - remain in storage): I'm officially calling it a comeback.


Photography is a long-running gig (and now side-profession) of mine, and one of the rockets I've always had among my film camera collection (instead of storage with the rockets) was my Astrocam - an RTF version rated for 200iso. Awhile ago I picked up some fresh 110 film from Lomography for testing, so when my nephew and I went to fly I broke the stuff out before it expired. On its second flight the booster decided to GTFO and separated from the camera - fortunately I was able to recover the latter from atop a nearby Dunkin Donuts.


Lacking a booster and left with many exposures to go... enter my first build in five years: an eBay-bought Estes Eliminator...


Reminder of Estes' marketing logic. But hey; now my Challenger-1 clone has a parachute after 5 years. I'm retaining the 18" nylon chute from before, so the plastic 24-er went on my Maxi Alpha 3.


Straightforward build except I abhorred the deep tube spirals, so before assembly I sanded, filled, sanded, primed, sanded, primed, sanded, and painted-painted the body tubes and launch lugs.


I also wanted to avoid a repeat of the old booster's fate, so I grabbed a length of Kevlar cord and will be using this method from here-on instead of the paper/glue mount on future builds. I cut a notch into the green engine mount ring for the cord to lay flush.


...and our finished product. Purple was also not my thing, but semi-gloss Rusto was, and in the end gave an almost-matte finish that matched the Astrocam nicely. Not bothering with the stickers, this one's going to be more function than form, anyway.

Again, . Looking forward to seeing your pics when you get them. I got one of a curb near the school at B6-4 Field. Other than that nothing was recognizable.
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Bill Eichelberger
NAR 79563

http://wallyum.blogspot.com/

I was SAM 0058

On the build floor: Centuri Stellar Hercules, Semroc SLS Scorpion, Semroc Squire, RDC V-Max

Ready to fly: Canaroc Green Hornet, Estes Astron Farside X, FSI Eos, FRW Magnum Spartan, Centuri Stellar StarLifter, Estes World Federation Star Probe, Estes Astron Apogee
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  #3  
Old 09-01-2015, 02:15 AM
jonrev's Avatar
jonrev jonrev is offline
Do you own space? No - NAYSA does.
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: 60030
Posts: 120
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I got one of the barn at the East Branch Forest Preserve from a NIRA launch 10 years ago. The higher altitude and sturdier booster should help - waiting for perfect weather is what kills me. Lomography has some decent stuff for 110 but I wish they'd pop out something 400iso or faster.
__________________
[jonrevProjects]

In Progress:
| Astron Scrambler resto | Firehawk resto | Mercury Redstone capsule #4 | Fiero scratch-build |

Planned:
| Renegade clone | Interceptor-E | Fat-Cat Copy Cat | Astro-Roid Land Camera |
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  #4  
Old 09-01-2015, 07:08 AM
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Rich Holmes Rich Holmes is offline
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Location: Syracuse, NY
Posts: 568
Default

Best picture from my son's Snapshot some years ago:



That rocket pretty much set me on the path to being here today.
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