Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Rama fixing

I'm currently fixing Rama, which needs a new shock cord and replaced fins after several, um, failed drop tests. The parachute worked fine, but the shock cord broke, leaving the rocket finless on the ground and the parachute 12' up in the crabapple tree. I had to get a ladder to get it down.
I just polished the plastic fins so they're almost perfectly clear. You-all have no idea how hard it is to find *clear* plastic fins in a basement of mess.

Update later on: Rama is fixed and ready for action. All three fins are CAed and plastic-cemented on, and I've got about 24" of good, solid, new 1/4" elastic shock cord tied to the screw eye I previously put into the nose cone shoulder and a 2" long screw screwed into the forward bulkhead and wold-glue-soaked cotton batting.

Because it's so heavy and the fins are so hard to attach well, I'll be using the biggest chute I've got that fits - currently an 18" homemade chute, but maybe the 32" plastic chute that comes with my Apogee order, which I hope to make tonight or tomorrow. It'll fly on a C6-3; if it survives that maybe I'll fly it on a D21-4 at CATO. That'll give it a good kick in the pants.

(D21-4 eventually worked well; C6-3 not so much).

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