Wind = Disappointment

Down in Princeton, Illinois there is a wind speed of 20 mph with gusts of up to 40 mph. Needless to say, the launch was canceled. I got my rockets all ready to go, and now they must remain grounded. What a pity.


Launch, Anybody?

As you may or may not know, recently our USLI team decided to scrap our old design for the vehicle and start from the ground up. We are modifying a Wildman kit to accommodate our three parachutes (one drogue, one main, and the parachute for the controlled descent pod). The rocket is completely made out of fiberglass, and is quite heavy. The fins alone weigh over 300 grams! However, a large K motor should *cough* carry it to 5280 feet. I have my doubts, but if worse came to worst, we can just stick an L motor in it and call it good. The rocket supports a 75mm diameter motor, and I believe we have a couple casings lying around in the I. Triple S. office.

So we are scrambling to put this rocket together, because the deadline for our test flight is fast approaching. As in, this Saturday. While I have no doubts about whether or not it will be able to fly by then, I am questioning its ability to perform. But hey, that's what this practice flight is for! To see what needs work.

Thankfully the engineering payload does not need to be completed for the practice flight, because we are still playing around with programming the micro-controller unit to make LED's flash on and off. We're a long way from GPS and altitude telemetry, radio control, servo connections, etc.

Here are some pictures of our progress:

All the parts for the Wildman launch vehicle laid out.

Centering rings being epoxied to the motor mount.

All the external body tubes laid end to end.

The workstation for programming the MCU.

The MCU plugged into the PIC programmer.

Yay! All that programming for *blink...blink...blink...* 

One of our members has a chameleon. Surprisingly docile. Doesn't mind being perched on someone's shoulder whilst person is grinding away at a piece of body tube with a Dremel.