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Old 11-08-2017, 12:25 AM
clhug clhug is offline
Intermediate Rocketeer
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 41
Default Estes Enterprise Launch Lug position

I tried searching for this issue and found several general threads about the Estes Enterprise but none of them mentioned this specifically.

The basic question, is there a known issue with the placement of the launch lug on the launch tube for the Enterprise model based on the tube marking guide wrap?

I built the Enterprise back when I was a kid (late 80's or early 90's), but I've never flown it because of this issue. I would love to finally fix this and actually launch it now that I'm back in the hobby.

I've double, triple, quadruple, quintuple, etc., checked this but it always ends up the same.

The marking guide wrap for the launch tube places the launch lug at an exact 90 degree angle between the saucer hold-down peg and the retainer clip (which are 180 deg, exact opposite sides of the tube).

But that places the launch lug, even with the small wooden extension between the lug itself and the tube, in a position where the dome on the bottom of the saucer section interferes with the path of the launch rod, making it impossible to even put on the launch rod, much less expect any sort of reliable launch from.

It looks like the launch lug nees to be another 45 degrees toward the retainer clip (or 135 deg from the saucer hold-down peg), but that is absolutely NOT where the marking guide wrap has it.

What am I missing?

The down side is that the launch tube is now bent over the years, so I'll have to get some spare body tubes and rebuild it, but I would love to get this think flying!

(I do also have the Klingon Battle Cruiser that I built around the same time that has always flown, and still does fly great!)

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Old 11-08-2017, 10:25 AM
kevinj kevinj is offline
Not so Junior
Join Date: Apr 2009
Posts: 381

My guess is the launch lug standoff is a little short, maybe do to bad die-crushing, or a little too much sanding. Step 24 in the instructions show the line for the launch lug passing through the lower dome of the saucer, and just above the edge of the saucer at the rim.

Maybe someone who has built one of these can chime in on whether the launch rod slides on the dome?

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Old 11-08-2017, 09:53 PM
clhug clhug is offline
Intermediate Rocketeer
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 41

With the way mine is now, we're not talking just a few millimeters off. The standoff would need to be about twice as wide as it is now to clear the bottom dome of the saucer. (It's roughly about 1/4" now, it would need to be about half an inch wide.) It's possible I somehow cut the standoff in half when I cut it out, but I of course didn't sand that much off of it.

I did a bit more research on this searching for online copies of the instructions for this kit. I found 2 different copies of the instructions, and indeed have found a difference related to the launch lug position.

Instructions for the 25th Anniv kit. This is the kit I have. The tube marking guides are on page 14.

Older kit instructions (scroll down to the 1275 number and open the .pdf). Tube marking guides are on page 15.

If you look at the probe body marking guide for each, you'll notice that the launch lug is in a different position between them.

On the 25th Anniv instructions, the launch lug is positioned exactly half-way between the hold-down standoff and engine hook. This puts the launch lug at 90 degrees from both. This is how mine is.

On the older instructions, the launch lug is closer to the engine hook. This puts it at a 45 degree angle from the engine hook (135 degress from the hold-down standoff). This would make it clear the dome on my model with the width of the lug standoff as-is.

So there IS a difference, but it doesn't explain why no one else has complained about this issue with the 25th Anniversary kit.

Yes, if anyone else who has built the 25th Anniv. kit can explain the launch lug position and standoff width on theirs, I'd appreciate it.

Thanks again!
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Old 11-09-2017, 05:45 PM
Scott6060842 Scott6060842 is offline
Master Modeler
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: NW Pennsylvania
Posts: 538

I built a 25th anniversary Enterprise and I remember having the same issue the launch rod rubbing tight against the model.

I don't have it anymore (I crashed it) and I will never build another one. I am fond of the Klingon kit however, a great flyer. I probably have 30 flights on mine.
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Old 11-09-2017, 09:40 PM
scigs30 scigs30 is offline
Master Modeler
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 1,947

I built the original and don't remember any issues.
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