We had a beautiful sunny afternoon for launching, 85°F with moderate humidity and virtually no wind. Justin, Taylor, and I launched several rockets, with only one mishap. Click the pictures for a larger view.
One thing I tried different this time is the use of a 6" ceramic tile as a blast deflector. It cost me all of 39¢ (plus tax). I drilled a hole using my drill press and an appropriate masonry bit, large enough to go over the screw I've added to my launch stand. I am VERY happy with this new deflector; not only does it do the job admirably and even clean up nice, but also it removes the possibility of the clips shorting against the deflector. I plan to upgrade all five of my stands this way.
First up was my Baby Bertha on a B6-4. Excellent flight, good recovery about 40 yards from the stand.
Next we launched Justin's Estes Patriot on a C6-5. It really got up there this time...
... and recovered on the roof of the horse shed:
Taylor's Cosmic Cobra was next, on a B6-4. The helicopter recovery feature of the nose cone didn't work very well, with the cone flipping up and stalling repeatedly. I'm suspicious that a little nose weight might correct that. The rocket did recover pretty well.
I launched my Edmonds Tinee on an A3-4T next. I added a little weight on one side of the main wing, in hopes of inducing it to turn. Instead, it went into a flat spin when the engine ejected. It did recover okay this time.
Next up was my Fliskits Triskelion on a C6-5. This rocket is a real crowd pleaser, turning in one beautiful flight after another. It also has the largest parachute of any rocket in my stable, and I was concerned it might drift, but it actually landed within about 50 yards of the launch stand.
Next was Taylor's Carrot rocket on an A8-3. This rocket is made from two sheets of copier paper, wrapped around a mandrel made of expended engines and glued. The fins are from an Estes Sizzler kit, the thrust ring is a section of expended engine casing, and the nose cone is a plastic carrot. Once it was full of powdery candy, now it's a nose cone. Oh... and it flies nicely.
I loaded up my 25 year old Estes Alpha with a C6-5 and let 'er rip. It flew almost out of sight (and it's painted black and fluorescent orange just so that won't happen) before popping the chute. It drifted quite a long way, even given the near absence of breeze, but Taylor managed to get to it before it fell out of sight.
Justin reloaded his Patriot with another C6-5 and launched it again, and this time it recovered perfectly.
I loaded Taylor's Cosmic Cobra with a C6-3. Wow, did it fly well... much higher than I expected. Again the nose cone flipped and wobbled on the return, but still the recovery was good.
I had remodeled my Black Vulcan with an internal launch lug, and today I launched it for the first time since the remodel. If you review the Tinee again? I removed the weight (since it obviously hadn't helped any), put in a fresh A3-4T and igniter and let Justin fire it off. Well, it did glide nicely... straight into a bean field. I doubt I'll ever see it again; down under those bean plants it's invisible. I looked, I really did, but I could have been standing right next to it and never seen it.