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Launch Report: February 2003 “Polar Bear” Launch

Launch date and time: February 22nd, 2003, 11:00 AM.
Launch location: Tickwood Ranch, Drexel, MO

KCAR February 22, 2003 Sport Launch and Team America Rocket Challenge Practice Flight at Tickwood Ranch

Good turn out despite the weather.
Photo by Tim Burger (10K)

Time Flight Flier/Rocket/motor & Comments
12:35 Range opened with the launch of...

#1 Tim Burger’s Upscale Estes Sprint on a C11-5. Good flight. Eighth flight of this rocket.

#2 Tim Burger’s Holverson Tangent on a C6-5. Good flight. 35th flight of this rocket.

#3 George Scheil’s Rock-A-Chute Clone on an A10-3t. Good flight. First flight of this rocket.
1:15 #4 George Scheil’s Pratt Hobbies Simple Six on an A8-3. Good flight. First flight of this rocket.
1:27 #5 Tim Burger’s Estes Maniac on a D12-5. Good flight, I thought he might have a long walk to recover it, but it didn’t drift too far.
1:34 #6 George Scheil’s Rock-A-Chute Clone on a 1/2A3-2t. Really underpowered on a 1/2A. Landed with minimal damage.

#7 Randall Jessee’s “Yellow Bottom” on a C6-5. Good flight. Instead of fins, rocket is stabilized with four toilet paper tubes, painted bright yellow.
1:47 #8 Randall Jessee’s Estes Big Dawg on a B6-4. Good flight. Fast descent parachute with a really big spill hole.

#9 Erin Wingate & Raytown High School Rocket Girls TARC two stage Dual Egglofter, on a D12-0 / D12-7. Third practice flight, first with Altimeter. Good boost and staging, but due to moderately high winds, Second Stage weathercocked quite a bit. Booster recovered right after launch, just SE of range head, near parked cars. After ejection, parachute was seen drifting far SE at a pretty good clip. We were uncertain if the Egg Capsule / Altimeter Payload were still attached or if the parachute had stripped. Chris Wingate found the Upper Stage with it’s streamer attached, quite a ways to the NW, near the barn. About that time George radioed in with the news that the parachute had indeed stripped, and we feared the worst for the Altimeter. George suggested we look even farther NW, past the barn, so George, Chris, Bob Wingate, and Tim’s dog Rocky set out. After quite a while, Chris came through again and found the payload by hearing the beep of the Altimeter! The eggs were smashed, but everything else was intact, including the Altimeter, beeping a measurement of 800 feet altitude. The parachute and second stage were found during the time of flights #10 through #12, and the Egg Capsule /Altimeter payload were found during flights #13 through #15. The Rocket Girls ready their vehicle.
2:00 #10 Taylor Jessee’s (? Didn’t write down who it belonged to, so not sure) Estes Stingray on an A8-3. Good flight.
2:07 #11 Randall Jessee’s Estes Baby Bertha on a C6-7. Good boost, parachute did not deploy entirely.
2:10 #12 Taylor Jessee’s Estes Banshee on an A8-3. One of the nicest looking flights of the day.
2:14 #13 Taylor Jessee’s Estes Sky Writer on an A8-3.

#14 Taylor Jessee’s Estes Executioner on a D12-5.

#15 Randall Jessee’s Tiny Pterodactyl on an F20-7. Spectacular flight. Largest engine used at launch.

#16 Tim Burger’s Maxi Alpha 3 on a C11-3. Parachute did not fully deploy, but rocket was okay.

#17 Randall Jessee’s Estes Blue Ninja on a D12-7. Another of the nicest flights of the day.
3:03 #18 Randall Jessee’s Estes Mach 12 on a C6-5. Good flight.
3:07 #19 Tim Burger’s The Launch Pad Gecko on a C11-3. Slight hang up on launch rod for a brief moment, cutting the altitude a bit, but a good flight anyway.
3:10 #20 Randall Jessee’s Cruise Missile on an A3-4t. Good flight. Rocket “entirely” plastic...who’s is that, Estes, Quest...?
3:20 #21 Tim Burger’s Maxi Alpha 3 on a D12-5. Good flight.

#22 George Scheil’s Comanche 3 Upper Stage only, on a C6-5.
3:29 #23 Taylor Jessee’s Weasel (29mm dia.), on a D12-3. Low but okay flight. A small fireball came out of top of body tube at ejection, perhaps a slight engine malfunction. Tim Burger brought the fire extinguisher and Sprayed a small spot on the ground where we saw a little bit of smoke, no problem. Saw some minor scorching on shock cord, but other than that I saw no damage.

#24 Bob Wingate’s Apogee Blue Streak on an A8-3. Good flight. Landed just on the other side of the fence, and I reached it with a stick to lift it up. I would have brought it over the fence, but just then the streamer separated from the rocket. I started to walk toward the gate, but Tim jumped the fence and retrieved both parts.

#25 Taylor Jessee’s Estes “Maxi” V-2 on an E9-4. Another nice looking demo, could easily watch the entire flight.
3:56 Range closed. After packing and driving off the field, George, Tim and Bob met at the Conoco in Freeman for coffee, hot cocoa, and talked for a while, “solving the world’s problems”td>

Notes: We had a good turnout for the launch, considering the cold wind out of the North and Northwest, and the driving distance to the field. There were six rocket fliers (counting the Raytown Rocket Girls Team America team as one), and several guests were present, most of which were human, but also including Tim’s dog Rocky, who was having a great time getting into the pond, tearing around collecting burrs, and generally being his friendly self. As Tim said, he’s “pretty good for a dog.” Most of us recovered our own rockets, but in addition to Chris Wingate’s finding of the Altimeter, Hans Jessee spent most of the day as recovery crew for the Jessee family (Randall and Taylor). Though it was cold, folks retreated into their cars when they needed to warm up. As far as I could tell, everyone had a good time.

Total # of motors used by type:
Motor Number
1/2A3-2T 1
A3-4T 1
A8-3 5
A10-3T 1
B6-4 1
C6-5 4
C6-7 1
C11-3 2
C11-5 1
D12-0 1
D12-5 4
D12-7 2
E9-4 1
F20-7 1
Total: 26
Impulse: 297.94

Most flights by rocket:
Two flights each: Estes Maxi Alpha 3
Rock-A-Chute Clone.
One flight each: Apogee Blue Streak
Cruise Missile
Estes Baby Bertha
Estes Banshee
Estes Big Dawg
Estes Blue Ninja
Estes Comanche 3 (upper stage only)
Estes Executioner
Estes Mach 12
Estes Maniac
Estes “Maxi” V2
Estes Sky Writer
Estes Stingray
Holverson Tangent
Pratt Hobbies Simple Six
The Launch Pad Gecko
Tiny Pterodactyl
Two Stage Dual EggLofter w/ Altimeter
Upscale Estes Sprint
“Yellow Bottom”

Most flights by rocketeer:
Seven flights: Randall Jessee
Six flights: Tim Burger
Taylor Jessee
Four flights: George Scheil
One flight: Bob Wingate
Raytown Rocket Girls TARC team

(assuming I got the ownership of the Jessee family rockets straight)

Our many thanks to our hosts, Dave and Carol Alburty, for letting us use their property for some of the KCAR launches, and for the Team America Rocket Challenge flights. It’s very much appreciated.

KCAR invites you to join in the fun, at our March launch! Check the rest of our website for details.

Report submitted by Bob (what happened to all my flyable rockets?) Wingate.

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Last updated: March 31, 2006