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Sunday, March 06, 2016

Recruiting a New Rocket Lobster

So when I took Mo to the KCAR club launch last summer there were a bunch of kids about my nephew's age who were just out of their small minds over the whole scene. Great thing about a club launch, there's dozens of rockets and not much lag between flights.

This is important when you're dealing with attention spans that are measured in nanoseconds.

All that cemented my plan to get rockets for my nephew. I'd meant to do it for his fifth birthday but that didn't happen. But Christmas, I got him a pretty much ready to fly setup so I wasn't roping my brother into much of a modeling project. Found a kit that came with two rockets, a bonus given how easily they're lost (I hadn't realized how easily they're damaged by excited five year olds, but there's that on top of the loss factor).

I got out to the park and got set up a few minutes early, figured it'd be good to have stuff ready to go when the lad got there. And that was smart. He's a funny kid, wanted to 'save' his second rocket rather than fly it that day. Me, I want to fly all my rockets multiple times when I go flying, so I'm not sure what was up with that.

I didn't get to fly Claude the Impaler, my lobster-claw-finned rocket. He's too heavy for a 1/8" launch rod, and his launch lugs are too tight for a 3/16". I think I can fix that by sanding out the lugs, wrap some sandpaper around a 1/8" rode and slide it through there for a few strokes.

I think Mo enjoyed the launches, too. She pushed the button for a few without hesitation, and one thing you can trust her to do is not participate in stuff she thinks is bullshit.

I've got a few rockets I need to finish building for this year. And Floyd, the big pink monster that I just need to glue a fin back on to make flyable again. Gonna have to get on that.

And no rockets were lost. That's always a bonus. It took me a lot of lost rockets to learn to be conservative with the Newtons. If an A8 will get the job done, don't put a C6 in there, you'll take something the size of a novelty pencil, put it directly into the sun 1200 feet up and never see it again. If a D12 will do it, don't push an E30 in there, it'll drift into a neighboring county once the parachute opens. Don't go under, you want the parachute to open before landing, but take it easy. Even then, wind, trees, you're bound to lose a few.

Which I guess is the opportunity to build more rockets.

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