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Rocket Documentation

September 16th, 2013

Today my goal was to finish all of the pieces that required heavy gluing, save the fins. I started by cutting a tube to hold the nose cone onto the body. After I cut it, I noticed that the cone was too loose, so had to discard my first attempt and try again. The second seems better.

Next I cut and glued a cross piece for the inside of the nose cone to hold the shock cord.

Finally I made my shock cord. I used the same red string from camp. I remember how it would burn away after multiple reverse charges, so I did a two string twist braid I learned at Springbrook. It helped a lot, but it took far too much time. Ms. Hays suggested that my body was wide enough to handle the extra width of a three string braid. My wrists were much happier not having to twist the string so much. I hope the parachute doesn't get jammed, if it doesn't then I'll use a three string braid from now on. If it does get jammed, I'll go back to the two string twist or find a better material.

I did not complete my goal of getting all of the heavy gluing finished. Tomorrow I still have to glue the shock cord in.

September 17th, 2013

My goal for today was to finish the parachute and fins. I wanted to make a smaller parachute than I normally do to see if I could guarantee better deployment by reducing the amount of "stuff" the reverse charge has to push. However, when my chute was done, I was concerned that the shock cord was shorter than the parachute stings. I had never worried about this before, even with bigger parachutes, but I couldn't shake the feeling that the parachute would still be stuck in the body when the shock cord stopped further separation. So, I made a much longer shock cord. This extra work meant that I didn't have time to work on my fins, but I did finish the recovery system. The shock cord is glued in place. All that "Dandelion" needs now are fins, a straw, and a paint job.

September 19th

Yesterday I finished my rocket. Today I got to use my extra time by painting it. This is my 4th rocket this year, so I've named it Dandelion and painted it appropriately.