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Welcome to RocketReviews.com (formerly Essence's Model Rocket Reviews or EMRR). 

RocketReviews.com is the home of almost 5000 reviews of rocketry kits and products. Written by visitors to RocketReviews.com like you, the reviews cover everything from low-power model rocket kits to high-power rocket motors.

The site's Flight Log allows you to record and share your rockets and their flights.  The Builds feature helps you document your rocketry projects. 

At RocketReviews.com, you'll also find a large collection of rocketry resources such as a list of rocketry clubs, a calendar of rocketry events, and large libraries of OpenRocket design files and Rocksim design files. A number of rocketry tools and calculators are available to help you design, build, and fly your rockets.

As you explore RocketReviews.com, you'll also find a number of fun things such as a huge library of rocketry videos and a collection of photo albums.

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Note: The Community.RocketReviews.com web site is down right now as the software is being updated.

The RocketReviews.com Community adds a new layer of social interaction to RocketReviews.com. Log in with your registered RocketReviews.com email address and password to join the Community.

You can now manage your Flight Log at Community.RocketReviews.com. While you can continue to manage your Flight Log here (and the information is shared between the two sites), I encourage you to try using the new site.

The forms at Community.RocketReviews.com for entering and editing flights are much better than the ones here and they will continue to be enhanced as time goes by.

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Today's Featured Review

Estes - Interceptor (Kit) [2008-2011]

Manufacturer:Estes
Diameter:1.3000 inches
Length:26.0000 inches
Skill Level:2
Style:Futuristic/Exotic

Construction Rating:
Flight Rating:
Overall Rating:

Contributed by John R. Brandon III

estes_interceptorBrief:
This is a single_stage futuristic "aerospace fighter" with 18" parachute recovery.

Construction:
The kit consists of:

  • 33mm Estes BT-55 body tube
  • 18mm Estes motor mount tube
  • 2 cardstock centering rings
  • A cardstock thrust ring
  • A metal motor-retainer hook
  • 2 laser-cut fin sheets to make six fins
  • 2 large wings
  • 2 vertical stabilizers
  • 2 ventral fins
  • An injection-molded plastic nose cone
  • An injection-molded plastic tailcone
  • 2 plastic wingtip pods
  • 2 plastic rudder-tip pods
  • 18" length of quarter-inch rubber for a shock cord
  • A printed paper shock cord anchor
  • A preassembled 18" plastic parachute
  • 2" length of launch lug
  • Two pages of instructions
  • 2 HUGE sheets of gorgeous waterslide decals
I had traveled to New Mexico for Christmas with my wife's family. We visited the Hobby Lobby in Clovis, and there it was....ESTES HAD REISSUED THE INTERCEPTOR! I would have bought one right there on the spot, but we had to travel home on my money. I resisted temptation until my local Hobby Lobby got one then grabbed it.

Estes has a real winner here. The old K-50 Interceptor had a less-than-perfect design for the wingtip pods and the plastic tail attached to a balsa nose cone. The new one has all-plastic pods with very nice recessed panel lines and slots for the wingtips. The nose cone and tailcone look identical to the old one. There is also a pair of plastic pieces for the two rudder fins that look like ECM antennas or something.

This kit went together very quickly and easily. The big wings and upper vertical fins are made as two pieces each. I tacked everything together with thin CA and filleted with white glue. The nose cone was loose, requiring a couple of wraps of slick cellophane tape to get it snug.

PROs: It's an Interceptor! The new plastic parts. Laser-cut fins.
CONs: Better shock cords could be provided.

Finishing:
At my wife's suggestion, I deviated from the "White with black tail and orange pods" color scheme. After sealing my fins with tube-type plastic cement, rubbed in with a finger, I sprayed the whole model primer gray then applied Testor's Acryl gloss blue to the wing pods and tailcone with a brush.

The decals really make this kit. There are two four-color sheets, one of them nearly as long as the main body tube! One nice feature is that the recommended engine list is printed as part of one of the body decals and looks like part of the decor from a distance.

It turned out very classy and looks quite "tactical" in the gray scheme.

PROs: Acres of waterslide decals really add a lot.
CONs: Acres of surface to paint (a very minor issue).

Construction Rating: 4 out of 5

Flight:
I flew my new Interceptor at my friend Darrell's farm. It needed six squares of Estes tissue wadding and has the new-style Estes motor hook (much easier to get the motor in and out). My first flight was on a B6-4. Nice straight boost to 400 feet or so (not tracking, estimate) and a nice deployment just after apogee and a low drift to landing. No damage at all.

Flight two was on a C6-5. Repeat of the first one, except about 750 feet apogee and a bit more drift.

Flight three was also on a C6-5. Again a picture-perfect launch, apogee about 750 feet, nice recovery.

This rocket is a nice flyer for its type. A fair lot of futuristic rockets are draggy and don't fly as well as they might. It might be good to upgrade this one to Estes 24mm "D" motors but then it'd be a bat out of hell!

Recovery:
Uses the typical Estes rubber band shock cord and plastic parachute. It would be nicer with a baffle system added (may get one for my wife to build and put a baffle in it).

No burning, damage, or serious wear so far on the recovery harness. Another possible nice touch might be a horizontal recovery harness with a shroud line rigged so she recovers as if flying.

Flight Rating: 4 out of 5

Summary:
Again a serious winner from Estes, based on a reissue of a grand oldie. A favorite is back, Rethinking well done on plastic parts, laser-cut fins, and those MARVELOUS decals!

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

Browse our database of about 4,100 reviews of rocketry kits and other products.

Today's Featured Flyer

David Sindel

AKA: The EGE

Certification Level: L1 NAR

Club Memberships: CATO, NAR

Personal Home Page: http://amateurgeek.blogspot.com

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eBay Charity Auctions

 TitleSellerBidsCurrent
Price
EndsCharityPercentage
Estes Screaming Eagle Model Rocket Kitshopjonrocket 3$8.50About 3 Days
Give Kids The World
10%
MPC USS Enterprise Model Rocket Kitshopjonrocket 17$8.04About 12 Hours
Wounded Warrior Project
10%
MPC USS Reliant Model Rocket Kitshopjonrocket 15$6.50About 1 Day
Marine Toys for Tots Foundation
10%

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JonRocket.com Auctions

Today's Featured Photo

TTRA Launches

March 2012 Launch


Acme Spitfire Lift-Off

Photo by Roger Smith

Today's Featured Video

(My first Estes Rocket Launch)

View our collection of about 5,800 rocketry videos.

Featured Rocketry Blog Posts

Model Rocket Building: Jeff Taylor's Steampunked ACME Spitfire
Jeff Taylor (FatBoy on TRF) "Steampunked" his FlisKit ACME Spitfire. The finished results are amazing! CLICK HERE There are hundreds of rivets and plenty of cardstock trim. I especially like the shingles on the fin root edge and the Zebra wood veneers with barrel hoops on the upper section. The stand-off launch lug is hidden in the pipework on the right side. Jeff is donating the model to the NARAM 56 auction. If I were there, I'd bid on it! Turned 180 degrees shows more detail. Check out the screen on the lowest section shroud. The gauges add dimension and more detail. I thought the ...
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Odd'l Rockets: Little Green Man Promo Film Short
Roger Smith put together a great L.G.M. promotional video. You can see a C6-5 flight from a quad copter video perspective. CLICK HERE This was filmed at the July 14, S.T.E.M. launch. The music and Theremin sounds make the perfect soundtrack. Thanks Roger! Great work as always . . .
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Model Rocket Building: ASP Colonel Build, Part 1, Parts
I haven't built many of the ASP (Aerospace Specialty Products) kits except for two of their Micro Maxx models. I've always liked the looks of the Corporal. This is a BT-50 based, 18mm model. ASP also makes a BT-55, 24mm version. I picked this one up at JonRocket.com. Parts are standard and high quality. Parts of interest, clockwise from the upper left: The clay nose weight, vinyl roll pattern, two longer 3/16" square balsa for tunnels, a metallic orange 12", 8 sided Mylar parachute, two smaller 1/8" square balsa tunnel pieces, red motor mount tube, large screw eye and ...
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RocketReviews.com Blog: Presidio, Texas, Rocketry Teacher Gets Green Card
Two years ago, Shella Condino, a Texas teacher known for using rocketry to inspire and educate, received a letter from the US Immigrations Service saying, “You are not authorized to remain in the United States and to depart as soon as possible.” A Texas congressman investigated and learned that the letter had been sent by mistake. Shella Condino now has a “Green Card” and continues to inspire her students in Presidio, Texas. Earlier this year, she once again, lead a team of kids to the Team America Rocketry Challenge finals. The team finished fourth over all in the ...
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Model Rocket Building: Fliskits MACME Shrew Build, Part 1, Parts
Here's the one kit I packed for Mexico. It's small with strong tubes. I could put this into my carry-on bag for a more gentle transit on the plane. With the available skins there is no filling or painting! Perfect for an "away build". This is a MMX downscale of one of the more popular Flis kits. When finished it'll stand 4.42" tall. The body sections are BT-5 based. The parts going clockwise from left to right: Pattern Sheet, Clay weight Nose Block, Kevlar cord anchor nail Streamer 1/2" X 12" long, Stiff Kevlar 24" long Instructions, Laser cut ring and fin sheet Launch Lug, Engine ...
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Rocketry Deals

Product NameList PriceSale PriceDiscountStore
Estes Phoenix Bird$21.99$11.7046.79%
Badger Air-Brush Company Minitaire Color Paint Set with Color Coat/Paint Retarder$271.40$154.3943.11%
50 Model Rocket Projects for the Evil Genius (Book)$30.00$18.3138.97%
Estes 302267 18 inches Parachute$7.99$4.9837.67%
Scientific Explorer's Meteor Rocket Science Kit$21.99$13.8037.24%
SkyRocket HoverBlade$24.99$15.9136.33%

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