Hans "Chris" Michielssen's Page


Is It Just Me?


Or does anybody else see something else in rocket designs? Every time I see the Estes Scorpion - It reminds me of a running Greyhound. That's probably why I didn't buy the kit. [More]

Carded Red Max Build, Finished


Here's the cliche picture you'd take to show how small it really is - Only 5 3/16" tall and weighs .33 oz. Much of the weight is the clay in the nose cone. The nose end picture shows a mistake! Can you see what it is? I had to go back, fix the art, print and build again. Everybody that requested the Red max PDF got the corrected art. Here's my Red Max family, The standard BT-60 based Red Max, ... [More]


Carded Red Max Build, Part 7, Ends & Edges


A small notch was cut into an engine block and some 65 lb. Kevlar tied on with a square knot. A 13mm engine casing was marked at 1/8". Normally an engine could extend 1/4" out the back, but on some models that could set the engine lower than the tips of the fins. A great thing about a pre-printed carded rocket, the only thing to paint is the nose cone! The shoulder was masked off and spray ... [More]

Carded Red Max Build, Part 8, Glued Assembly


The black fin position lines were lightly scraped for better glue adhesion. At the paper seam joint on the launch lug, the seam was sanded. The fin lines were also scraped and the fins glued on. On a printed, carded rocket it's important to use white glue on the outside surfaces. Wood glue would dry yellow and discolor the print and model. White glue dries clear and is invisible on the finished ... [More]


Carded Red Max Build, Part 6, Tube Wrap


The final BT-5 length is 2 13/16" long. You might find it easier to use a piece of tube about 5" long and trim it to the size of the wrap after it is glued on. Without using any glue check the fit of the tube wrap. The inset picture shows the black border line being trimmed off before gluing. Draw a pencil line straight down the tube to line up the wrap edge. Apply glue stick completely over the ... [More]


Carded Red Max Build, Part 5, Fin Skin Gluing


The upper picture shows the three layers viewed from the root edge. Use your burnisher to round off the cut side edges. This won't be a full round like the folded leading edge. The burnishing just takes the squared edges down a bit. Don't burnish over the root edge, leave that square and sharp! Run a small bead of white glue down the outside and trailing edges of the fins. Let dry and sand ... [More]

Corner Chip Fill - TIP


Well, we've all been there - the balsa grain runs in such a way that the trailing edge tip can break off. If the tip break is small you can fill it. Sand off some balsa dust from some scrap balsa. Don't sneeze. Apply some yellow wood glue to the broken corner. Use wood glue for this, yellow glue can be easily sanded. Press the glued corner into the balsa dust pile from all sides. Let the balsa ... [More]


Carded Red Max Build, Part 4, Fin Skin Gluing


Don't use liquid white glue to attach the skins! Use a glue stick. TIP: Glue sticks don't over saturate the paper or card stock. They also allow re-positioning before the glue dries. I use the colored (purple) glue stick so I can see if I have good coverage. Be sure to apply enough down the center fold and along the edges. Set the skins over the rounded straight leading edge of the cardboard. ... [More]

New Kevlar Supplier, Part 3


This softer Emma Kites Kevlar can fray at the end. Tie an overhand knot close to the end. Here's the weird thing about the Emma Kites Kevlar. Normally a square knot stays tightly together after being pulled closed. After tightening, the knot starts to loosen and open up! It's easy enough to fix. A small drop of white or yellow wood glue adds the right amount of grab and keeps it closed. Apply a ... [More]


Carded Red Max Build, Part 3, Fin Skin Folding


To emboss the leading edge fold line sometimes I use the back side of a single edge razor blade. The sharp side is taped over with layers of masking tape. Any rough burrs are sanded off before embossing. You might find it easier to use the tip of a dull butter knife to emboss the leading edge fold lines. Emboss the leading edge fold before cutting out the fins. Lightly score the center lines ... [More]

Hans "Chris" Michielssen

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