Custom Rockets - Fiesta {Kit} (10030)

Contributed by Bob Patterson

Construction Rating: starstarstarstar_borderstar_border
Flight Rating: starstarstarstar_borderstar_border
Overall Rating: starstarstarstar_borderstar_border
Diameter: 0.98 inches
Length: 11.75 inches
Manufacturer: Custom Rockets
Skill Level: 1
Style: Sport

Custom Rockets Fiesta

Brief:
Small, single-stage rocket with streamer recovery.

Construction:

  • 1 body tube,
  • plastic nosecone,
  • 3 balsa fins,
  • 36" x ~1 1/14" plastic/nylon (can't tell which) streamer,
  • 14" x 1/8" elastic shock cord
  • 18mm engine mount with Quest style metal clip (only springier like Estes)
  • centering rings
  • water-slide decals
  • 1/8" launch lug

Pros - easily assembled using only white glue (I provided the glue help for my 7 year old, this was the first rocket he assembled). Masked fins to paint yellow after base coat of gloss white (Krylon spray paint), then applied decals and a clear coat to finish.

Finishing:
No cons.

Construction Rating: 3 out of 5

Flight:
First launch was with A8-3, standard wadding with streamer, engine slides in eaily and held with clip. Flew great. Tried B4-x, B6-x, C6-5, C6-7, no problems with any, except that with C6-x the rocket disappears from sight until it comes back down. Almost lost it several times after C6-x launch because we didn't see it come down. We were shooting into wind, and turns out the wind carried it past us without anyone realizing it.

Recovery:
Custom Rockets Fiesta Shock cord is glued inside upper body and has held up well, although currently we can see the 4 bare strands of elastic where the cloth material has burned away. Recovery speed is good, not too fast. Have had fins break off several times, don't think we're getting enough Elmers on them. Will try hot-glue gun for next repairs. For its most recent launch on 5/26/02, I used Kevlar cloth for wadding under the streamer - apparently jammed it in a little too hard, only the nose cone ejected. Apparently came down pretty hard from a C6-7 launch (we never saw it, and wandered around where we thought it might have come down). The boy who found it and carried it back tripped over someone else running back, and may have landed on it - 2 fins came off, and 3rd was loose - can't tell which was landing damage, and which was kid damage. Upper body is also slightly crinkled, consistent with nose first landing. Bottom of streamer was melted, the heat apparently carried thru the Kevlar cloth (both were still in the rocket).

Flight Rating: 3 out of 5

Summary:
I have no bad feelings about this rocket, great little one for higher wind conditions and for nice high shots, the kids love launching it and chasing it down.

Overall Rating: 3 out of 5

Flights

Comments:

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G.B. (March 1, 2001)
Perhaps Mr. Johnson just fell into a bad kit -- the Fiesta my son recently assembled had nice straight fin stock. I agree that it's a good kit to teach youngsters some basic construction skills, and also that the NC is too loose. But I have seen that problem on many kits with plastic cones (most recently, the Estes Big Daddy). Why these companies can't make the ridges on the cone shoulders a little larger (we can certainly sand or trim them if they're too snug!) is beyond me. Or better yet, include more balsa cones. With the boat tail, the Fiesta reminds this BAR of the old Estes Sprint, which I recall was quite a performer. We'll fly it as soon as the snow melts. Custom does indeed seem to be trying to fill the gap Estes left with its move to more and more one-piece fin assemblies in smaller flyers. I wish them luck and will try at least one more of their kits.
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G.B. (April 1, 2001)
An addendum to the above: We flew the Fiesta at the Pittsburgh Space Command's March 2001 sport flying day, and I must say it was an impressive little bugger. Some of the folks there couldn't believe it was only flying on an A8-3. Lost a little paint at the top when the NC apparently kicked back, so I would suggest to anyone building this kit that they use a longer shock cord than the one provided.
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D.B. (April 1, 2001)
Well, I guess it's the kit then. I built a Fiesta kit also, and have the same problems as mentioned above. The nose cone is too loose and the fin stock was of poor quality. One of the fins chipped off at the bottom, so I had to cut the remainder of the fins to match. I have never like the flimsy engine clip use by both Quest and Custom (only on their new kits). Overall, I give this kit a 2.5/5.0
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H.E. (May 3, 2002)
I bought this kit for my daughter, she put it together with no problems , We didn't even bother to stiffen the fins up. We have flown this many times mostly on C6-7's but also a few time on a D21-4. Without any modifications to the rocket.
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R.E.L. (May 15, 2010)
I concur with the review as written. The NC quality suffers do to poor fit, masking tape was my fix also. The balsa quality on my kit was poor to the point I scrapped them and cut new fins out of stock I had. I have had little issue with broken fins, my glue selection is Ambroid. I have flown the rocket in calm and windy days all with good performance. On As and Bs not have had the guts or the field size to attempt a C yet.

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