Performance Rocketry Competitor 4

Performance Rocketry - Competitor 4 {Kit}

Contributed by Jason Vennard

Construction Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Flight Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Overall Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Manufacturer: Performance Rocketry

Performance Rocketry Competitor 4

This is an all fiberglass, high performance sport rocket. It is a basic kit for the experienced rocketeer as it is short any recovery hardware, harnesses, and/or parachutes, all of which you'll have to provide yourself.

The kit includes a nice 4" fiberglass nosecone, two fiberglass body tubes, fiberglass motor tube, 3 fiberglass centering rings, a fiberglass coupler, a fiberglass sled for the coupler/avionics bay, two coupler fiberglass bulkplates, and two airframe fiberglass bulkplates.

This kit again is for the experienced builder. No directions are included but if you have much HPR experience, the assembly is pretty simple and straightforward. Fit and strength with this kit is exceptional. Everything fit together nice and snug with no additional work necessary. It is ready for dual deploy, but during construction you have to decide and plan how you want to do this as well as come up with motor retention for the project. I used a 1/4" tubular Kevlar loop run through the top two centering rings for recovery harness attachment and an Aero Pack 98mm to 75mm tailcone retainer to handle motor retention.

Everything was put together with Aeropoxy and milled fiberglass added. Construction was simple enough and I followed the general motor tube/fin can assembly and worked my way up from there being sure to include plenty of internal fillets as I went as this one will be getting plenty of power under it at some point and should hold up to the task without any problem. There is a lot of variety in end weight with others I have talked to that have built this kit, which I believe is just an example of differing build techniques (e.g., Each of my fins has 6 fillets each with each fillet consisting of 15cc's of AeroPoxy with milled glass added).

Compared to your typical high power kit, finish is very easy with this bird. The fiberglass is smooth with no spirals. However, the weave was apparent in a few places, but it still didn't take much to fill and finish it. This bird's first flight will be a memorial flight so I went with silver and black for my colors and had custom decals made.

Construction Rating: 5 out of 5

Performance Rocketry Competitor 4

Currently my sims are showing it able to fly on anything from an I600 up to the largest 75mm motors without needing any noseweight or alterations other than motor adapters.

First flight was on 05/21/2006 with TQC in Walcott, IA. For this flight, my motor of choice was the CTI 75mm K510 with a nice long 5 second burn. Rocket was prepped for flight with dual Missileworks RRC2 altimeters to control recovery functions. The rocket was set up to be drogueless at apogee and a SkyAngle Classic 60 at 1,000' for the main.

Upon ignition, the motor hiccupped bad and just fizzled for over 2 seconds like the bottom of the motor had lit. It did finally come up to pressure though and lifted off nicely. The flight went nice and up to 7,611' according to the RRC2.

Recovery system is completely up to you and something you'll need to think about and plan for during construction. I will be going with an all Kevlar recovery system, drogueless at apogee with the main at 1000'.

At apogee, the RRC2 fired the apogee charge and the rocket separated and began to fall drogueless, separated by 45' of shock cord. At 1,000 the RRC2 fired the main charge and the SkyAngle Classic 60 opened quickly and caught air. The backup charge visibly fired at 800' and everything came down for a nice soft touchdown.

The flight and recovery went off without a hitch and I wouldn't change a thing. Next up is maybe a L850 or M1297.

Flight Rating: 5 out of 5

This was my first all fiberglass kit. I liked that it was a kit with the basic parts needed yet still left plenty up for grabs in the design as far as figuring out the recovery and finishing of the rocket. Fit was exceptional and overall there is nothing that I personally would want to change.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5

Other Reviews
  • Performance Rocketry Competitor 4 By Kyle Cornelius (June 26, 2007)

    Brief: This review is for an all fiberglass high performance rocket made by Performance Rocketry. It stands almost 8' tall and 4" in diameter. I tend to overbuild so mine came out a little heavier than most, 15lbs without motor. Dual deployment is a must with this rocket. Construction: This kit comes with the following parts: 4' fiberglass body tube with fin slots ...

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unknown (October 19, 2006)
Please take into consideration: I, and many others, have had issues with this vendor after sending payment for products and not receiving them. Communication has been poor, therefore, buyer beware.
J.F. (December 6, 2007)
From my experience, Performance Rocketry has been nothing but a pleasure to deal with. Since 2004, I have ordered PR products directly from Curtis and through Wildmman Rocketry, and Rockets Magazine. Each and every time I have ordered from ANY of the three sources, I never once had an issue with availability, communication, or delivery. Around this time last year I ordered 48" of PR 54mm carbon fiber tubing through Tim at Wildman Rocketry. I was told up front that it may take 3-6 weeks for the carbon order to be completed and delivered. It was on my door step less than a month (4 weeks) later. I'm not trying to "sell" anyone on PR products, I'm just stating my first hand experiences.

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