The big squeeze

Last summer somehow most of the things I wanted or needed to do didn’t conflict much. This year is being more difficult.

So the SoLID collaboration meeting ended up being Thursday and Friday, not Friday and Saturday, so that was good, but I still had to get back before the rest of the weekend’s activities. That plus cheaper tickets meant flying into and out of Norfolk, VA and driving from there to Newport News — during rush hour, both ways. Speaking of ways, Waze told me to get off I-64 for several miles and back on just before the Hampton Roads Bridge Tunnel, which kept me out of the worst of the Interstate parking lot. The flights were amazingly non horrible and I got back home around midnight.

The plan from there was: First Syracuse Rocket Club launch of 2015 Saturday morning, morris tour Saturday afternoon, 20 mile bike ride Sunday morning, and wife’s commencement ceremony Sunday afternoon.

Before leaving for Virginia I prepped some rockets, based on a highly optimistic scenario of six flights. I got two in.

The forecast for Saturday didn’t look too great, too much mention of rain, but in fact, at least where I was, we got no more than a light five minute shower in the early afternoon. I got to the field around 9:00 and helped set up. Typically we don’t get a lot of attendance for the May launch but this year several TARC and CNYRTC teams showed up, so we were off to a busier start than usual.
IMG_3749 IMG_3751 IMG_3752 My first flight was to be the first of the Tail Burner Habanero, on a ½A3-2T. IMG_3753 I lost sight of it momentarily after launch but spotted the ejection event… at which point it separated. Nose cone and streamer came down independently of the rest. I’d like to know what happened, but for that it’d help if I’d been able to recover either piece. They came down far enough away, in grass taller than the rocket and out of line of sight, that I wasn’t able to find them. Not that I gave it more than a cursory search, I admit. The kit was free, I didn’t invest a lot of time in the build, and I was pressed for time.

So when neither end came up, I wrote the Tail Burner off and set up my entry in the B streamer spot landing contest: the Bohica’s Dead Ringer, my draggiest B motor rocket, tilted into the wind and toward the target point.IMG_3754Tilted a little too far, in fact, and given time I’d’ve tried it again with less of an angle. But by the time the distance was measured and the rocket recovered, it was time for me to go.

So no more Dead Ringer flights, no Photon Disruptor, no Ventris on a G motor. Yet. NYPower’s next weekend.


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