Yesterday I got around to swing testing the Bad Cholesterol and the Bohica’s Dead Ringer. The BC I think is stable enough… I think. But not sure about flying it at a big out of town event. The Dead Ringer… um. Let’s just say it failed the swing test with a C or a B, and was marginal at best with an A. Now, I’m pretty confident it’ll fly stably on an A. We all know the swing test is conservative, and rockets sometimes flunk the test but still fly fine. And the Dead Ringer is weird enough that it wouldn’t surprise me if it were such a rocket. But I’m not flying it the first time with lots of people around.
This morning Kenny and I hopped into the car and drove to Geneseo, NY for NYPower 18. Here’s the good news: The morning’s overcast skies gave way to partly sunny and warm, with light winds. More good news: No crops this year, two months earlier than they’d been doing it lately. Bad news: It’s been cold and wet, so the field hasn’t been mowed. Thigh high grass, and in places ankle or worse deep water.
I was initially skeptical about launching anything low power, small enough to hide in the grass, but it wasn’t quite that bad. Kenny sent up his new Ascender first, on an Estes black powder F15-6, arrow straight and slow way up and back down. He followed that up with another new one, an Estes Code Red.
I decided to go for it with the largest rocket I had: the Mega Mosquito on a D12-3. Got a nice compliment on the finish at the safety check, which surprised me a bit but we’re all our own worst critics, right? Nice flight and fine recovery, aside from the fact that it landed in the middle of the parking area! My first 24 mm flight in quite a while (only previous ones were the Eggscaliber at our first club launch in 2012). That’s one of my NARTREK Bronze requirements out of the way.
I’d bought three single use Aerotech D10-5s for the Bad Cholesterol. I didn’t want to fly the BC, but the AT D10-5 is on the recommended list for the Rocketarium Retro Rebel, so I decided to give that a try. It went up great! Down was a little less great. The shock cord got tangled — probably my fault, could have prepped it better. The parachute did deploy, but the screw eye pulled out of the nose block and the nose came down separately, right next to the body though. And the motor ejected — I should try the zip tie around motor and hook technique I’ve seen, I guess. On the plus side the parachute appeared no more scathed than it was after the first flight, so the Nomex seems to have worked out better for me this time.
That was all I launched today. I didn’t want to fly the Yankee due to the combination of wet ground and no paint, nor the Loadstar II because of high grass for the booster to get lost in, so no further NARTREK goals just yet. Not the cardstock models due to small size and sensitivity to wet. Not the Mosquito because, yeah, right. So only one new rocket went up.
We went off to our hotel, the Rodeway in Lakeville, where Kenny ate his weight in food for dinner, and that was Saturday.