The first launch of my Vector V after 28 years went a bit sideways, but no damage was suffered by the vintage bird. Click here to read all about it.
For the fleet page entry for this rocket, click here
It's done! I can't put into words how happy I am with this refurb. I made a coupler from cardboard that is a bit thicker than the 110# paper I planned to use. I cut it apart, then glued it together using the handmade coupler, and sanded and primed it again. With that completed the rocket appeared to be straight, so I went ahead and painted it.
The paint job shown is Wal-Mart Colorplace Flat Black and Dollar General Miracal Aluminum, with a topcoat of Future. I have also refurbished the parachute (which was in amazingly good condition) and I look forward to launching it later this summer.
I fixed the fins with CA, then got a coat of primer on it... and I got a surprise. It's bent. It's a bit hard to tell in this picture, but it bends over at the upper end of the transition. According to the original plan, there is a thrust coupler under there.
After some hard thinking, I have decided to cut it in two. I'm going to cut it apart right at the coupler, then handmake a new coupler by wrapping 110# paper around a dowel, and try really hard to get it back together straight. I'm not sure how well it will work, but I'll post pictures.
I've decided to refurbish my old (circa 1979) Centuri Vector V rocket. I am posting a "before" picture to record the damage, though "damage" may not be completely accurate. The damage to the decals, paint, and especially the edges of the fins is pretty obvious, but there are also significant problems that were a result of my less-than-expert job building the rocket. For instance, there is a dent in the shroud, not visible in the picture, that happened when I assembled the rocket; this led to a small but visible gap between the upper end of the shroud and the body tube. Also, the black vanes are not straight.
I think I'll start by sanding off the decals and smoothing out the paint. I'll repair the fin edges by infusing them with CA and clamping them in wax paper to set (I've had good luck with a similar procedure on another rocket). I'll have to finally find a pot of Elmer's Fill and Finish to repair the shroud issues. I think I'm going to leave the vanes alone; breaking and/or sanding them off and replacing them is a fairly good amount of work. I may change my mind about that, though, as the project progresses.