Ye Olde Rocket Forum

Go Back   Ye Olde Rocket Forum > The Golden Age of Model Rocketry > Kit Collecting
User Name
Password
Auctions Register FAQ Members List Calendar Today's Posts Search Mark Forums Read


Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
  #1  
Old 11-14-2015, 05:11 PM
BEC's Avatar
BEC BEC is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Auburn, Washington
Posts: 2,284
Default Electron Beam launch controller NOT preassembled

Here's one for those of you who were keeping track of things Estes in the mid 1980s:

I acquired from eBay a blue Electron Beam controller that is in kit form (with detailed instructions for assembly), just like its predecessor Solar Launch Controller. Now from my extensive research (paging through Estes catalogs posted online on ninfinger and the Estes site itself), the Electron Beam first appeared in the 1986 catalog, and one of the features touted there is that it was preassembled.

So......anyone know about how kits for the "no assembly necessary" Electron Beam came to be "in the wild"?

This is a continuation for a new fascination with old Estes GSE that started, I guess, with the two versions of the red Electro Launch.

Attached are screen caps of the salient 1986 catalog page and the front image from the eBay auction. It arrived today and it does match this image.

Bob Sanford? Any ideas?
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:  Screen Shot 2015-11-14 at 2.59.08 PM.png
Views: 54
Size:  653.8 KB  Click image for larger version

Name:  Screen Shot 2015-11-14 at 3.07.17 PM.png
Views: 69
Size:  196.3 KB  
__________________
Bernard Cawley
NAR 89040 L1 - Life Member
SAM 0061
AMA 42160
KG7AIE
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 11-14-2015, 05:24 PM
eljefe's Avatar
eljefe eljefe is offline
Craftsman
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: California
Posts: 158
Default

I first took up model rocketry in 1988 and one of the first kits I ordered out of the catalog was an RTF X-15 (EST-0716) that came with pad and controller. The controller was the same blue Electron Beam you show that was disassembled and came with instructions to put it together. It was the only launch controller I had for more than a decade.
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 11-14-2015, 05:35 PM
eljefe's Avatar
eljefe eljefe is offline
Craftsman
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: California
Posts: 158
Default

Looking back at catalogs from those days, they explicitly call out if the controller included in starter sets is assembled or not.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:  88catalog1.png
Views: 52
Size:  410.0 KB  Click image for larger version

Name:  88catalog2.png
Views: 58
Size:  726.2 KB  
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 11-14-2015, 05:36 PM
BEC's Avatar
BEC BEC is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Auburn, Washington
Posts: 2,284
Default

Interesting that they'd package a launch controller that needs to be fairly carefully assembled with an RTF rocket. Makes me wonder a little about the marketing department in those days....

Just saw your second post with the catalog pages. Well, how about that! Mystery solved in short order.


Thanks for the info.

Added later: I've gotten just the center piece and blast deflector from that "Lunar" launch pad in another eBay lot. Now I know a little more about that as well.
__________________
Bernard Cawley
NAR 89040 L1 - Life Member
SAM 0061
AMA 42160
KG7AIE
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 11-14-2015, 05:47 PM
chrism chrism is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: St. Paul, MN
Posts: 1,217
Default

I remember assembling my first launch controller, mine was orange.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 11-14-2015, 05:50 PM
eljefe's Avatar
eljefe eljefe is offline
Craftsman
 
Join Date: Jun 2014
Location: California
Posts: 158
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEC
Interesting that they'd package a launch controller that needs to be fairly carefully assembled with an RTF rocket. Makes me wonder a little about the marketing department in those days....


Good point. I probably didn't pay any attention to that fine detail when I ordered it. I was so infatuated with the X-15 that it seemed the perfect starter set to buy. In any case, I didn't find it that hard to put together even at the tender age I was at the time.
__________________

Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 12-12-2015, 01:33 AM
blackshire's Avatar
blackshire blackshire is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 5,558
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEC
Interesting that they'd package a launch controller that needs to be fairly carefully assembled with an RTF rocket. Makes me wonder a little about the marketing department in those days....

Just saw your second post with the catalog pages. Well, how about that! Mystery solved in short order.


Thanks for the info.

Added later: I've gotten just the center piece and blast deflector from that "Lunar" launch pad in another eBay lot. Now I know a little more about that as well.
My Moon Mutt launch sets came with a mini launch pad (with dowel legs and a half-length 1/8" launch rod) that looks like the "Lunar" launch pad; are they the same pad?
__________________
Black Shire--Draft horse in human form, model rocketeer, occasional mystic, and writer, see:
http://www.lulu.com/content/paperba...an-form/8075185
http://www.lulu.com/product/cd/what...of-2%29/6122050
http://www.lulu.com/product/cd/what...of-2%29/6126511
All of my book proceeds go to the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre www.northcotehorses.com.
NAR #54895 SR
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 12-12-2015, 01:41 AM
BEC's Avatar
BEC BEC is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Auburn, Washington
Posts: 2,284
Default

Jason,

No - the currently available wooden-leg pad (in this set: http://www.estesrockets.com/clearan...-and-controller) has shorter and much stouter legs than this "Lunar" pad did. I *think* the Moon Mutt set I got a few years ago came with this one. It was not the old Lunar pad that I got parts of as mentioned above.
__________________
Bernard Cawley
NAR 89040 L1 - Life Member
SAM 0061
AMA 42160
KG7AIE
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 12-12-2015, 02:14 AM
blackshire's Avatar
blackshire blackshire is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Fairbanks, Alaska
Posts: 5,558
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEC
Jason,

No - the currently available wooden-leg pad (in this set: http://www.estesrockets.com/clearan...-and-controller) has shorter and much stouter legs than this "Lunar" pad did. I *think* the Moon Mutt set I got a few years ago came with this one. It was not the old Lunar pad that I got parts of as mentioned above.
Thank you for the link. Unfortunately, everything but the image loaded (I'm sure it's my computer's fault, as it runs Windows XP--I'll replace it soon). The Moon Mutt launch pad's legs (I just looked at mine) slide UP into position in the plastic center section, while the Lunar Launch Pad's legs--if my memory that you jogged is accurate--were inserted straight in to the center section.
__________________
Black Shire--Draft horse in human form, model rocketeer, occasional mystic, and writer, see:
http://www.lulu.com/content/paperba...an-form/8075185
http://www.lulu.com/product/cd/what...of-2%29/6122050
http://www.lulu.com/product/cd/what...of-2%29/6126511
All of my book proceeds go to the Northcote Heavy Horse Centre www.northcotehorses.com.
NAR #54895 SR
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 12-12-2015, 12:34 PM
BEC's Avatar
BEC BEC is offline
Master Modeler
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Auburn, Washington
Posts: 2,284
Default

Here's the image.
Attached Thumbnails
Click image for larger version

Name:  002464_main.png
Views: 16
Size:  166.6 KB  
__________________
Bernard Cawley
NAR 89040 L1 - Life Member
SAM 0061
AMA 42160
KG7AIE
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:05 PM.


Powered by: vBulletin Version 3.0.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Ye Olde Rocket Shoppe 1998-2018