Thursday, April 12, 2012

Belated: January '12 Lucerne Launch Report

Catching up... For once I'd planned realistically and took only one complex flight with me on that day. This would be my first five-motor clustered air start in Der Red Mix II.  I fired a CTI 1874K740 C*Star on the ground, then 2-sec delay, then 2 x 282H399 White Thunder, then 2-sec delay, then 2 x 150G50 Imax.  Let's jump into the Flip MinoHD onboard vid and then I'll provide details.  As always, and for maximum thrill, you should watch on YouTube in 720p, full-screen:

From the ground Rob Greenlaw and I could clearly see the flash/pop of the H399 dipped igniters before the motors actually ignited.
   I spent several hours prepping the Raven and Parrot 2 altimeters, e-matches, and recovery system the night before so that made somewhat quick work of the final prep the next morning:

Here I've laid out my casings and associated reloads:

I'd like to take a moment and thank Cesaroni for inventing grain spacers.  It's that sort of competition that really benefits consumers and we appreciate it! Thanks also to Rob for shooting the following pre-flight sequence:

The liftoff on the K740 C*Star was spectacular as always. These motors burn so brightly that it's nearly impossible to capture mach diamonds but I was able to drastically underexpose and post-process to prove their existence:

I was most pleased when the rocket stuck the landing yet didn't crack a fin. I upgraded from a 10' to 12' 'chute this time but that's still almost not large enough for those dangling fins:

Here's the very interesting Raven flight graph. Note the three thrust traces on the acceleration curve and their relative contributions to the velocity spikes (click the image for a larger version):

Here's the tabular data from the Raven if you're interested. And the obligatory recovery shots. Thanks again, Rob!

Next I plan to fly a fully-loaded, all-Skidmark cluster: K675, 1-sec, 2 x I297, 1-sec, 2 x H180, 1-sec, 2 x H123. I'm not sure when but I already bought the motors so... yay. It might even be painted and have decals by then?  I bought a 3M full-face respirator with isocyanate/pesticide absorbent canisters so hopefully my nervous system will remain intact.

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