Today’s Syracuse Rocket Club launch went better than I’d expected. Temperature was in the high 30s when we started, and there’d been rain and graupel on the drive there and 50% chance of rain and 14 MPH wind in the forecast. It stayed below 45°F and the wind was up there, but there was no precipitation except what I think were the first very few snowflakes of the season at one point. More to the point, people showed up anyway and flew rockets. That means we were 6 for 6 on launches without cancellations this year.
I showed up and didn’t fly rockets, pretty much. I was LCO for the first time. I didn’t cause any unexpected drag races or anything like that, so I guess I did okay.
The contest was random duration. None of the three contestants had any good test flights first, so it was pretty much stabs in the dark. The target duration was 40s and Scott’s time was 2:20, so I figured I was probably a shoo-in for second place when I prepped my Metalizer for my one and only flight of the day. But the chute separated on deployment and I DQed. I kept my eye on the chute, not the rocket, because it was a good Top Flight chute and I kind of wanted it back more than the Metalizer. But even though it was red and was seen to land this side of the brush in the field, when I got there I couldn’t find it. Eagle-eyed Scott took a look and he didn’t spot it either. Weird. The Metalizer was recovered without damage, including the snap swivel the chute was attached to. I hadn’t noticed beforehand whether the chute was connected to the swivel via a Kevlar loop or three, but I suppose it must have been — I can’t think of any other scenarios that make sense. That makes two chutes I’ve lost that way, if so. From now on I just use swivels with eyes big enough to take the chute shrouds directly.
That was the last launch for the club and, probably, for me before May 21, 2016. Not a glorious conclusion to the year, but it could’ve been worse.
Oh, and the Local 315 farm brewery‘s right on the route home, so I was able to stop for a growler of Octoberfest. That’s something.