This project is a build of the BMS - Astron Drifter, a clone of the Estes Drifter. I got the BMS kit for Christmas. I really liked the Drifter as a kid so I ordered some additional parts from Semroc so that I could build 2 Drifters at the same time. Below is a shot of the Astron Drifter from one of the old Estes catalog.
The BMS kit includes everything you need to recreate this great rocket except the decals so I ordered 2 sets from Excelsior Rocketry. Below is the BMS kit along with the extra parts I ordered from Semroc.
For the shroud I am using 100 lb. bristol board. 100 lb. weight may be a little on the thick side but if I get it to roll without creasing the shrouds will be nice and sturdy. I cut the strips that serve as the glue tab and glued them on the inner side of the shroud so that the seems will be flush.
The 2 shrouds are done and test fit pretty well into the body tubes.
The shrouds have been attached to the body tubes.
Here is a shot showing the seams. I will glue one of the fins on the seam so it will not show on the finished rocket.
For the fins I am using 1/16" basswood instead of balsa. One of the BMS clone die cut balsa fins is shown with the sheet of basswood below.
Here is a shot of the 6 fins. The BMS fin template did not fit my shroud-body tube joint as well as I wanted so I made my own on a piece of the bristol board. I used this new template as a guide to cut out the fins.
The fins seem to fit the body tube and shroud fairly well. I still need to sand the fins.
The fins are glued on and ready for epoxy fillets..
Fins being masked in preparation for the epoxy.
Fins and tube spirals covered with Elmers Carpenter's Wood Filler
Both rockets were primed with filler primer
Painting the rockets. The fins still need to be painted the same blue as the nose cones.
Here is a closeup
Masking off the white in preparation for spray painting the fins
Both rockets are painted and I am ready to apply the decals. The decals I ordered from Excelsior Rocketry arrived a while back. They do a great job making the decals and they will be the perfect finishing touch for my Drifters.
The decals are on and the Drifters look great.