A scale model of a Polish RP-3 that flies on MiniMaxx engines and can fit in the palm of your hand from ASP.
The kit includes: two (2) body tubes, a nose cone, two (2) slide-in couplers, a decal sheet, Kevlar thread, lead shot, and some hard styrene sheets and other miscellaneous styrene tools.
Instructions are definitely set for the beginner. Besides a quick overview to see if there were any gotchas, I ignored them.
For a beginner they are extremely thorough which I guess is good for a very new area of model rocketry. ( I have my own kit line for these motors so I feel I have already experienced all the gotcha's) At first I was dismayed by the cut yourself styrene parts but I must say in the end I am impressed. The parts come out VERY sharp and paint VERY smoothly.
The tubes were smooth enough then some 1000 grit sandpaper rubbing on the nose cone and I did not even have to seal anything. The model is surprisingly hefty. Not heavy, but I mean sturdy probably due to the couplers that run the entire inside length. The break apart body (instead of breaking apart at the nose) is a VERY good idea and makes for a much easier shock cord and nose weight attachment. And the break apart seems to make the airflow MUCH better since MMaxx type rockets tend to streamline in recovery even when the nose pops. This mid-body break also makes finishing a DREAM. Much less masking to get those CRISP lines etc.
I did make some changes. I used scissors instead of a knife to cut the fin stock. I used scissors a lot so I have a nice sturdy, very sharp, pair around and they worked quite well. By being careful with placement of patterns I was also able to end up with a lot of extra styrene (will put that to good use). The styrene is CA friendly.
Finishing the RP-3 was a breeze . . .literally! Paint the top half BLACK and the Bottom half STEEL (silver). Let dry and apply the decal. I applied the decal once it straightened out and the darndest thing happened; it wrapped itself around the tube . . . flawlessly at that. I was done and it looked VERY pretty!
Construction Rating: 4 out of 5
It takes MMaxx engines from Quest. They all test out stable in RockSim using the specs of my completed models. These models are rather light and will really zip off the pad - should be loads of fun.
The RP-3 flew great! It took off a wee-bit fast but still watchable (launch pics? yeah, right, keep dreaming). No damage upon recovery. The RP-3 landing within 40 feet of the pad.
I was very impressed. The double walled tube structure that happens when you make it according to instructions make the RP-3 very strong. I anticipate a very long life.
As usual with MMAxx if you don't see it land you are in trouble BUT this one is large enough and heavy enough that it was visible throughout the entire flight. On a slightly darker day the RP-3 could be tough (dark black and red) but I had no problems watching it fly.
The RP-3 uses Kevlar for the shock cord and since I opted out of using the streamer (pain to prep) no wadding is needed.
Flight Rating: 5 out of 5
I am extremely impressed by this model. The styrene parts are a definite PLUS. Sturdy strong and beautiful to finish. I love them! The RP-3 is especially cool. I was going to model the RP-3 as a Nano Rocket but with ASP doing such a wonderful job on this one why bother. Except for having ready cut fins (very hard and would likely be very expensive) I can not really see how to improve this model any more than it is.
Overall Rating: 5 out of 5