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Cosmodrome Rocketry - Aerobee Hi {Kit}

Published:2005-08-21
Manufacturer:Cosmodrome Rocketry
Construction Rating:
Flight Rating:
Overall Rating:

Contributed by Aaron Head

Rocket Pic

Brief:
Great scale two stage rocket that is not for the beginner. Staging by electronics only and left up to the builder.

Construction:
The kit included:

  • 2.6 inch upper stage body tube
  • 1.6 inch booster stage body tube
  • 6 plywood fins
  • 3 balsa conduits
  • steel shock cord mount
  • 18 and 24 inch nylon parachutes
  • 2 very nicely turned nose cones
  • motor retention on both stages
  • decals for 2 different flight configurations

While the instructions are clear and easy to follow, they are not for the beginner. This is one of those times when you should read and fully understand the instructions before starting the build. The kit will almost certainly have to be modified to allow staging electronics.

The body tubes are not pre-cut for through-the-wall fin attachment. The balsa conduits are very long and soft and must be hand shaped to match the contour of the body tube.

Rocket PicRocket Pic

The hardest build step is creating the stage transition. The instructions clearly walk you through this, but extreme care must be taken to ensure it is built correctly.

Finishing:
The two balsa nose cones are very well turned and take sanding sealer very well. The body tubes have virtually no spirals to fill. Prime, paint and seal.

Construction Rating: 4 out of 5

Rocket Pic

Flight:
For the size, this is a very light rocket. I wouldn't be surprised if it could be flown on a large E motor. It is also strong enough that it could be flown on a small H. I used an Aerotech G104-10 because the winds were high and I wanted the rocket to get up there and get up there fast. I attempted to take a picture of it on launch but all I got was smoke trail. It didn't so much jump off the pad as it moved from the pad to 300 feet in the blink of an eye.

I chose not to stage the maiden flight due to the winds. The delay was a little long, but it helped to deploy late in the winds on that day.

Recovery:
The shock cord is a long red bungee cord connected to a steel cable that is bolted to the top motor mount centering ring. The recovery harness could be moved to a rocket twice it's size and it would still work without a hitch.

I used a Kevlar blanket to protect the purple nylon parachute from the hot gases.

Flight Rating: 5 out of 5

Summary:
For a scale rocket, this rocket is my new favorite. It can be flown on almost any motor, staged or not. The kit tells you up front that you must take considerations for staging electronics before you start and I would strongly agree. I decided to purchase the Microtimer from Perfectflight. The timer is mounted in the staging coupler and drops away with the booster.

A fun and challenging rocket to build and even more fun to fly.

Overall Rating: 4 out of 5

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