Saturday, October 22, 2011

Two In A Row!

Rocket-related posts, that is.

The Northern Virginia Assosiation of Rocketry held its monthly launch today, so I prepped a few rockets and headed out for a couple of hours. I haven't had much chance to fly this year, so I was amazed when I got to the launch and found probably close to 100 cars parked at the field. I pulled in, grabbed a rocket and headed for the flight line.

One the way I met the President of the club, and when I remarked on the crowd Joe told me that this had become the norm. When I started flying with them years ago there would be launches where seven to ten people were it.

A big part of the crowd were Cub Scouts and parents. I got in line (never seen a line this long to get a launch pad assignment), but moved up quickly because I needed a larger launch rod than the scouts.

Here's what I flew:

Barenaked Lady - E11-3J - my last blackjack reloadable motor, and it's still one of my favorite rocket/motor combinations. The Lady is a largish rocket, but built very lightly, so she really gets up there on this long-burn motor. Six fins keep her perfectly straight on the way up - no wobble, no spin - and the delay is perfect as she coasts up and over the top on a long column of dark black smoke. She recovered perfectly under a 20" yellow x-form parachute that my wife made for me. Beautiful flight.

YJ-218 - 2x C6-7 - This clustered rocket has made somewhere around 50 flights, and still gets oooohs and ahhhhhs. Both motors lit and the homemade yellow and black parachute opened perfectly right at the top.

I had brought a couple more, but the guys manning the safety check-in table had been working steadily for a couple of hours. I took a shift at the table and really enjoyed working with the kids again. I'm going to have to make more of an effort to get out there every month, if nothing else to pitch in and spread the volunteer work out a little more.

It was a great day for rockets.