Flight Log for 4 Aug 1996, Monroe, Washington

Started spritzing rain, rain stopped about 11:30 AM; wind 3-15 mph, cool, appr. 2000 ft ceiling.
Model Flt
Recovery Type Motor Comments
Mongoose 3 (upper w/ Delta Dart parasite) 2 24" plastic streamer and glide Estes A8-3 My first BG flight since 8th grade (and that last one never glided) -- up until 2:00 AM the previous night modifying the Delta Darts to hang on the parasite hook and adding the hook to the Mongoose body tube, then a few test chucks at the field to verify I hadn't changed the balance of the gliders. They glided fine from a hand toss, but came down in a steep spiral when launched from the rocket; otherwise, the flight was excellent, with ejection right at apogee and the glider recovering into a glide promptly (no long dives or aerobatics).
Mongoose 3 (upper w/ Delta Dart parasite) 3 24" plastic streamer and glide Estes A8-3 The first time was so good, I wanted to do it again right away. Minor surface adjustments to the glider, and another flight; glide was still quite steep, but otherwise all nominal. Mongoose body tube was crompled on landing.
Mongoose 3 (upper w/ Delta Dart parasite) 4 24" plastic streamer and glide Estes A8-3 There's no such thing as too much of a good thing. More surface adjustments on the #1 glider; glide was a little less like a spiral dive, but still on the steep side. Body tube crumpled further on landing (like bent 90 degrees just above the motor mount) -- wrapping on a bandage of cellophane tapes seemed to help stiffen the tube for further flights.
Mongoose 3 (upper w/ Delta Dart parasite) 5 24" plastic streamer and glide Estes A8-3 Final flight of the day for this combo; the Mongoose tube was just too soft for further flying. The glide was the best yet, thanks to a small speck of clay added to the tail of the glider. More adjustment on future flights is in order; I wonder if I can find a special on A8-3s?
Stellar Designs Spinaker 5 12" plastic parasheet Estes A8-3 I used a Quest Tigertail on this flight; it fits through the motor lock ring on this design more readily than an Estes igniter, and they seem just as reliable. The parachute jammed in the tube and failed to deploy, with internal pressure relieved by blow-by backward past the motor -- with the nose ejected, the model was unstable, and though it landed hard on the mouth of the "tube" no damage was done..
Stellar Designs Spinaker 6 12" plastic parasheet Estes B6-4 Same result as the previous flight, but from a higher altitude; the parachute failed to deploy and the model tumbled in with the nose cone ejected. This might almost be an acceptable recovery mode for this rocket; that would surely simplify prepping the bird!
Stellar Designs Spinaker 7 24" plastic streamer Estes B4-2 Running out of small motors; this one was left over from my first launch in January, when it was just right for a Bertha in windy conditions. The Spinaker was changed over to a streamer for this flight, in hopes it would deploy more readily from the tiny recovery compartment; it wasn't much better, and the model tumbled in again. In addition, the combination of ejection blowback and whatnot broke off a second motor lock lug; the model can't be flow again until I repair this. It'll require some careful work with a model knife, a few small pieces of plywood, and some CA; should be done by next month's launch.
Alpha III 10 24" plastic streamer Estes A3-4T The only small motors left were T motors, and this is the only bird currently able to fly on my adapter -- and the flight was perfect, with recovery close to pad. I did notice the motor hook in the model is starting to show some movement; this one is probably not going to last too many more months.
Alpha III 11 24" plastic streamer Estes A3-4T Another good flight on this combo -- this rocket is completely reliable, and these motors are very, very good in it. It's tempting to build a lighter, balsa-fin Alpha with >only< a 13mm mount, and be prepared to fly it on T motors and with an adapter on Apogee 10.5mm micro-motors.
Alpha III 12 24" plastic streamer Estes B4-6 This flight was aimed upwind a few degrees, and arced well over before ejection; the combinatio of upwind travel and late ejection brought the rocket back within 100 feet of the pad.
Alpha III 13 24" plastic streamer Estes C6-5 Things going so well I got brave, and put a "big" motor in. The rocket weatherocked a bit and traveled well upwind, but drifted back toward the pad, landing about 100 feet upwind from the launch point.
Alpha III 14 24" plastic streamer Estes C6-5 After the last fight, I took some of the angle out of the launch rod for this flight, and the rocket went much higher; unfortunately, it also drifted more (yes, even on a streamer this one comes down pretty slowly). Drifted across the road, and looked like it was in the swamp, and given the height of grass, bullrushes, and blackberry brambles over there (well above head height), I gave the model up for lost.
Pixel (unit #1) 3 Tumble (weight-shift method) Estes 1/2A3-2T Motor ejected once again, but due to the clouds, it was easier to keep an eye on the model and I was able to track both motor and model long enough to tell which was which; model was tracked all the way to the ground. This model draws comments every time I launch it; wait until they see the next one, finished with more than minimum paint-drying time to spare!
Alpha III 15 24" plastic streamer Estes C6-5 The model was recovered by another flier who was hunting a model in the field beyond the swamp; it had landed on the farm road passsing through the marsh intsead of in the reeds and water. Never one to pass on pushing my luck, up it went again (with a little more angle on the rod). Recovered about 50 feet from where I stood to track the flight, for a prefect end to the day. Fourteen flights in all, approximately $25 worth of Estes motors, and I left with all the rockets I came with -- a successful day by any reasonable measure!

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