Saturday, October 3, 2015

New Concept 3D Printing

3D Printing takes a big step forward!
To see the short video, CLICK HERE

It looks like the piece is drawn out of a heated plastic tub.
Faster and no ridges to sand off!

Dr. Zooch Ares I-X Build, Part 7, Flame Fins

Flame fins are a standard Dr. Zooch kit feature on models that wouldn't normally have fins. Easier and stronger than clear fins.

On the left is the flame fin template. There are many small sharp edges that would be very hard to cut and fill. I tend to round them off for simplicity.

This is the four fins after gang sanding.
To sand the rounded inside edges I use some 400 grit wrapped around a pen barrel.

After gang sanding I'll go back over the fins again individually adding some extra divots. This is so all the fins won't have exactly the same profile.

After filling the fin grain with CWF, again use the 400 grit around the pen barrel to sand the divots smooth.

Friday, October 2, 2015

Estes (Centuri) Little Joe II !!!

Just added to the Estes Coming Soon page - 

This is based on the older Centuri Little Joe II, the BIG one.
It'll use the D12-3 engine instead of a cluster.

CLICK HERE to see the Estes webpage.
To get a jump on the capsule build, study the original Centuri instructions, CLICK HERE

Arriving late December.
Retail price is $49.99

UPDATE: On YORF, John Boren posted:
"The only thing that is the same with this Version and the older Centuri version is the Capsule. This version has a Vacuum Form corrugated Wrap for the lower body tube. The fins are two piece injection molded plastic. All the detail pieces that get glued to the corrugated wrap are molded plastic. The engine nozzles are two piece molded plastic and have the rubber booties molded into them. Attached are a few images of a model I through together for test flying. It takes about 5 hours to build. I didn't use any primer or putty, just shot a coat of white paint and then silver. The nozzles should be painted black and white and the escape tower needs some black color as well but since this model was built to be test flown several times and then most likely thrown away, why bother. The HARDEST part to build on this model is putting on the decals. The finished weight is going to be more like 8.5 or so ounces with 1.5 ounces of this being clay in the nose. I hope to see a lot of these being used for sport scale events at NARAM."
John Boren

Dr. Zooch Ares I-X Build, Part 6, Body Wraps

Page 4 has you glue on the longer BT-20 wrap first.
I attached the smaller BT-50 upper wrap first. I figured I'd practice on the smaller wrap before tackling the long BT-20 wrap.

Dr. Zooch always instructs you use white glue on the inside edges. I didn't have good luck with this method the first time around and now use glue sticks.

Just like the shrouds, you can pre-curl them in the heel of your hand.

An even coat of glue stick was applied and the wrap was quickly rolled onto the body tube.
Lay over a clean piece of copy paper and burnish.
If the seam ends aren't staying down, slip some glue underneath with with knife blade and burnish again.

New Estes Honest John Released

Estes has just released the new BT-60 based version of the Honest John. Retail price is $26.99
To see it, CLICK HERE

Some Specs:
Skill Level 3
Length: 22.9 in. (58.2 cm)
Diameter: 1.64 in. (42 mm)
Estimated Weight: 4.4 oz. (124.7 g)
Laser cut Wood Fins, Waterslide Decal, 15 in. (38.1 cm) Parachute Recovery
Recommended Engines: C11-3, D12-5 (First Flight), *E9-6, *E12-6
TRIVIA: The red and white decor is based on the test round colors that Centuri featured in its catalogs.
The Clearance Sale is ongoing, now called "Spooktacular Savings!"

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Dr. Zooch Ares I-X Build, Part 5, SRB Shroud

Here's the three shrouds I made.
The best fitting shroud was used and the other two thrown away.

The inset picture shows the 2050 rings in place on either side of the 1" long BT-20 tube.

Do some dry fitting before gluing.

The ends of the shrouds were evened up by gently turning them on sandpaper on a block.
The ACM assembly was glued into the top of the long BT-20.

I used a glue stick to attach the shroud. It's not as wet as white glue from a bottle.
There will be a raised shoulder over the bottom of the BT-50. This will disappear when the upper wrap is added.

Old Engine Dating

Engine photo below is from
From the Tripoli FAQ page:

On older Estes & Centuri motors, the date of manufacture is indicated by a number indicating the day, a letter code indicating the year, and another number indicating the month. The letter codes correspond to the years shown in the table below. From 2000 onwards, the practice of using a letter code to represent the year was abandoned.

E 1974      M 1982      U 1990       C 1998
F 1975       N 1983      V 1991       D 1999
G 1976      O 1984      W 1992
H 1977      P 1985       X 1993
I 1978       Q 1986       Y 1994
J 1979       R 1987      Z 1995
K 1980      S 1988       A 1996
L 1981       T 1989       B 1997


Hi Earl,

Thanks for thinking of me. Hopefully Vern's memory will be better than mine on this, but here goes:
I can't remember what the first two letters were other than a production date code of some sort. The last letter in the series was an identity code for the operator who made that motor. My operator code was "V" and Keith Kohler's was "X". I can only remember Keith's as he always liked to claim that "brand X" was better than the competing "brands". And of course I remember my own code. As operators we were very conscious of quality and always checked the returns for the operator code. I'm sure that each of us thought we were the best, but I tracked returns for quite awhile and really couldn't prove that my motors were any better than anyone else's. Not that that changed my mind.
As far as the current date codes, we started in 1976 with "F" as that would be the letter if we started with 1971 being "A".
The above is as accurate as I can remember.

Best wishes,

Thought this was interesting info and thanks to Ed for such a fast response. Now, if we can just find out what the first two letters corresponded to date-wise.

Earl L. Cagle, Jr.