All right, I can’t make much further progress on anything else I’ve started until weather and opportunity become conducive to painting, and it’s high time I got started on this plastic model conversion I’m intending to fly at our next launch on the 20th. Given that I have never done a PMC and haven’t even built an unconverted plastic model since I was about 12, and wasn’t very good at it then, this should be interesting.
The good news is, lots of people have converted the Jupiter C and it’s said to be one of the easiest PMCs you can do. I’ve found at least three writeups online which I’ll be referring to.
I have built part of a plastic model. I bought a model for that purpose some time ago and a couple days ago finally got around to gluing some of it together. It came with some thin cement, but I also tried out a bottle of Tenax 7R and a capillary applicator I also bought back then. I built just enough to start getting comfortable with the process; I don’t feel any need to complete it.
I won’t get very far with the Jupiter C very soon. Couple of reasons. One is on Monday we’ll have a club meeting that will include a presentation on PMC, and I definitely want to sit through that before getting into the conversion. Another, more concrete, reason is that I don’t have the parts. Last night it occurred to me I needed a BT-55 motor mount and don’t have one. Oops. So I sent the order out and hopefully it’ll arrive in reasonable time. If not I have some BT-55 kits available I could cannibalize, but I’d rather not.
Anyway, here it is: tools, instructions, kit. Working in the garage to avoid stinking up the basement, though the 7R turns out to be a lot less smelly than the other cement. The instructions have you start with the base. I was tempted to ignore that and proceed directly to the rocket itself — the base being superfluous for launching purposes, hence less urgent — but decided it’d be good further practice and, as I said, the arrival of parts will be my big bottleneck.
I decided not to pre-paint any parts. In the case of the base I strongly suspect that’s a mistake, but tough; I’m not waiting for spray painting weather to get going and I don’t feel good about hand painting this. The rocket itself is mostly white with not much in the way of small parts so I think not pre-painting will be fine there.