Monday, January 7, 2013

BALLS 21 does not equal gonads now legally authorized to consume ethanol... offers far more to the cutting-edge rocketry community.  Let's start with the video fragments of my first N-motor flight (720p/full-screen always work best):

I'm quite happy with the video I was able to salvage but I'll leap to the executive summary:

What worked:
  • A mostly cop-free 11-hour drive from Oceanside, CA to Black Rock, NV and back.
  • The brilliant foresight and planning of my fellow San Diego fliers.  We had an amazing compound nearly dead-center on the range.  Thanks, compadres!
  • A beautiful CTI 14272N1975 Green^3 reload (thanks to Kris' friend Molly for shooting):
  • Perfect flying conditions on the days I attended.
  • Unparalleled and proactive mutual respect from all fliers in attendance.  I was somewhat awed by the inverse attitude/magnitude relationship!  This is a very cool community.
  • Mark and Craig Clauson's incredible rocket hunting ability! Thank you both once again.
  • Frank Hermes' amazing 2-stage flight featuring the Tilt-O-Meter 2.
  • Everything else except...
What didn't:
  • Not repacking my main 'chute!!!!!!!!!!  For the first time EVER by the way.  This seemingly minor error on my part converted my 'simple, fun first N motor flight' into many, many small but costly repairs and replacements.  Repack your recovery system every time por favor.
  • Camping.  I suck at it and I'm at peace with that.  The first night was unbelievably cold and the second night was warmer yet provided just enough wind and flappy tent top that I attained approximately zero REM sleep.
  • My older Beeline GPS.  I was locked on the ground but never received any position or altitude data and my Google Earth plot was a complete GP[mes]S once again.  Yes four data points points can form a trapezoid but... ummm... ?:
  • Friggin' tattle tale Nevada drivers and innumerable 65-55-45-35-25 zones on state highways 50 and 447.  Can they be serious?  My jaw remains agape that some kindergarten-level utility truck driver in Fernley radioed in to the police that he thought I was following too closely.  Well fuck that guy 'cause he apparently needs to create some genuine drama in his life as I pay painful amounts of attention behind the wheel.  Bonus: the cop was the coolest I've met in my life.  He checked my docs, let me go without even a warning, and provided driving advice to Black Rock.  Now that's what I'm talkin' 'bout!!
  • Sadness that I just typed way more negative words than positive because...  
This events rocks and experienced fliers simply need to ditch their families for a couple of days and participate at least once in their lives.
     So the up part was amazing, the down part was invisible, both GPS and Comm-Spec tracking failed, and the formidable Mark & Craig Clauson returned my rocket.  Upon first inspection I was very happy but, over the coming days, I slowly realized the damage that a fouled main can do.  I won't belabor it but I suspect my ARTS2 was concussed so I'll estimate my final peak barometric altitude at the Raven 2's ~17,963'.  For my data-nerd-bretheren here are the various outputs:

ARTS2 + grain of NaCl: graph, tabular, motor performance, coefficient of drag
Raven 2: graph, tabular

I might append more later but, in summary, repack that main, drive as slowly as humanly possible in NV, and be sure to use your CB to narc on my CaliForNyAy drivin' ways.  Thanks for reading and exceed all expectations of yourself.

No comments: