Saturday, November 26, 2016

The 2016/2017 build list...

I admit to suffering from rocket ADD - it is far too easy to distract me from existing or planned projects. One look at a Facebook image of a rocket, an old catalog page, or a thread on Ye Olde Rocket Forum is enough to start an impromptu build, pushing the existing construction to the bottom of the queue. Given this, one may wonder why I bother to compose a list for the winter build season. The answer is simple - I generally manage to construct over half the models on the list, which, IMO, is pretty good. Let's consider the 2014/2015 build plan:
  • Big Bertha - No brainer. No fleet is complete without a Bertha, and mine was put out of commission at the Rocket City Blast Off.
  • Beulah - A Big Bertha derivative, featuring a two motor cluster. Inspired by Chris Michielssen's Big Girtha.
  • Centuri Micro-Probe clone - One of the best looking 2 stage rockets ever designed.
  • S.S. Cestris by Sirius Rocketry - Been wanting to build this kit for some time.
  • Estes Gyroc clone - Always wanted to build one of these "Helicopter recovery" rockets. A classic.
  • SpaceX Falcon 9
  • Estes Scrambler clone - The quintessential egg lofter. never had one of these as a youngster, though I really, really wanted one.
  • Estes Orbital Transport - Yes, it will be a pain to build. But it looks and flies so cool... love the glider!
  • Tiny Tim scale model - Have the parts, have the design, time to get this puppy built
Of these, I built the Big Bertha, Beulah, the Centuri Micro-Probe clone, the SpaceX Falcon 9, and the Estes Scrambler clone. That's 5 out of 9, or about 55% - certainly enough to warrant making a list for this year. However, I must account for my rocket ADD, so I'm going to keep it small to allow for the "impromptu projects." Therefore, the 2016/2017 plan is comprised of only 3 rockets:
  • Estes Gyroc clone - A carry-over from the 2014/2015 list. Important to build this one as 2017 marks the 50th anniversary of the kit's release.
  • Centuri Mach 10 clone - Had one of these as a kid, but I could never get a decent glide out of it. Time to try again.
These three will do for a start. I would also like to get around to the Orbital Transport and the Semroc reproduction of the Estes Trident sometime in 2017, but you never know - there are lots of distractions in the rocket universe!


  1. My 2016-17 list:
    - LOC Bruiser
    - Estes Expedition
    - Upscale of my Earth Defense Force fighter (from BT-50 to BT-55)
    - Downscale of HSXT-21 (from 4" to 2.65" body tube)
    - Upscale of Estes Stiletto (from BT-50 to BT-80)
    - Upscale of Estes Space Station Aquarius (from BT-60 to LOC 5.5")
    If I can ge the above done puks a few recent Estes kits in my build pile, it will be an exciting 2017!

    1. **If I can get the above done plus a few recent Estes kits in my build pile, it will be an exciting 2017!

  2. The Mach 10 isn't so much of a glide as it is a semi-controlled fall with style. It's the Buzz Lightyear of the rocketry world.