This blog covers the day to day progress of water rocket development by the Air Command Water Rockets team. It is also a facility for people to provide feedback and ask questions.

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Slow progress and weather

It's been a while since the last update. In the last month we've had family visiting from overseas and spent about a week up in Cairns snorkeling at the barrier reef with the kids. It was nice to have a break from cold Sydney. We have also temporarily swapped houses with my parents so that the visiting family could all stay in the same house with us. Our house just couldn't handle 7 people comfortably for a month. As a result I haven't had easy access to my workshop.

But excuses aside, some rocket development has been continuing. In the last couple of weeks we built a couple of bigger test rockets to test the Mk3. Stager. We were supposed to do the final trial flights today, however, the Doonside launch has been canceled due to rain and muddy conditions making the launch site inaccessible.

We are hoping that the weather will improve tomorrow morning, so we could try the rockets at the local park at a lower pressure.

Here are the two rockets fitted with the Mk3. stagers ready for test flights. We built two just in case there is a problem with one or if it crashes and gets damaged.


Sunday, July 04, 2010

Mk3. Staging Mechanism test flights

This morning dad and I went down to the local park to continue with the staging mechanism test flights. This was the third separate set of test flights, with minor failures on the first two sets. We finally got the stager working properly today on 5 out of 5 launches so we were happy. We only flew the stager on a small booster (2.1L spliced pair) and a 1.25L second stage. The flights were done at 110psi and 120psi.

Next we'll need to test it on a larger rocket a few times, but will need to take it to Doonside for testing as the local park would be too small for it.

Here you can see the small sustainer shortly after staging. The parachute is already being deployed on the booster.

If the next set of tests proves successful, then we'll post a full tutorial on how to make it.