September 2016 Launch Report

It was a superb launch day after the proceeding two days of storms. There were many new faces, some trial memberships and new members. Most prolific launchers were new members, brother and sister Robbie and Alexa. Robbie launched his rocket "Red Tip" 5 times and Alexa also launched her purple and pink rocket "Girl Power" 5 times. This is reflected in the types of rockets launched with 24 LP and 3 MP of the total 36 launches for the morning.

There were 2 successful Level 1 High Power certification flights for the day. Serge flew his Calisto "Red Devil" to 3000 feet on an H133 and Riley flew his rocket "You'll Clean That Up When You're Finished" to 2000 feet on an H125. Congratulations guys!

Warren flew his 54mm Minimum Diameter "Light Saber" airframe that he set a single impulse 'L' motor record with and has now had drastic surgery. The new "cut & shut" version is now 600mm shorter and is called "Light Saber Short". Warren intends to break his own record at Westmar in 3 weeks time with a 28 - 29K feet flight.

Roland had an interesting CATO on his AMRAAM "Mini BBX" which the club managed to get a series of photo's of. The rocket began to lift off normally but then slipped back down the rail with a rapid series of puffs of brown smoke from the side of the rocket, quite spectacular. Roland did have much better luck with his two other launches, his Calisto on an H90 and a scratch built LP 2 stage rocket "Zenith 2".

Yet another great launch day with lots of activity.

August 2016 Launch Report

Amazing rocketry launch weather, no wind and a cloudless blue sky that made tracking easy, the sort of day that makes winter worthwhile. We thought initially it would be a quiet morning with only a hand full of die-hard members setting up. But by 9 am, a steady stream of cars began arriving turning it into a fairly full-on morning with a total of 38 launches. At one stage we had 10 rockets on the pads waiting to launch.

It was great to see several families returning for their second launch as part of Southern Cross Rocketry's "Fly It, Take It" program held at last month's public launch. At least a couple indicated they would be back to join the club.

Lachlan started the day with the spectacular launch of his scratch built, "Buckshot 7", a cluster rocket powered by seven C6-5 motors. While not flying particularly high at 1100 feet, the flash pan/black powder ignition produced lots of smoke, the rocket and launch rail being totally obscured at lift off and emerging from the cloud on multiple flame columns. Cool flight!

There were 11 High Power flights for the day, all H and I motors. These included three L1 attempts. Father and son team James and Craig launched an AMRAAM 2 on an H54 to 2100 feet for a successful L1 certification. Congratulations! Our unsuccessful members will both be back next month for another attempt.

There were only four Medium Power flights this launch, Low Power launches making up the numbers with 23 launches. Perhaps because of the lack of wind, there were numerous flights that landed within 30 meters of the pads. Even the higher altitude flights didn't cause long retrieval walks although Warren did end up in a tree on the other side of the road!

Yet another fantastic day launching rockets!

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July 2016 Launch Report

An absolutely magnificent launch day, chilly at first but turning into cloudless warm day with no wind. Probably the busiest public launch day for some time with over 150 visitors thanks to Ari's PR efforts with the local media. These numbers were reflected in the Southern Cross "Fly It, Take It" program with 32 rockets launched. There was an additional 9 Low Power, 13 Medium Power, 14 High Power and 2 water rocket launches making a total for the day of 70 launches. Some members traveled considerable distances to be at the event with Nic Lottering up from NSW and Matthew Small and his partner Kathy down from Cairns.

A couple of more unusual rockets launched were Matthew Smalls "Flying Saucer" on an F30 and Mike Ritters single fin rocket "One Zee" on a F52. Unfortunately Mike ended up in the power lines but it will be retrieved by the power company later this week.

Some of the more unusual rocket names emerging during the mornings launches were Nic's "54 Thingo", Matt's "Dunno", Cam's "Mohammed Ali" but the most amusing was one of the young visitor's who called his rocket "Please Don't Explode".

An event like a public launch requires many volunteers but most can do a couple of hours and still have time to play. However, once again Di Nikolic spent the whole launch running the BBQ/drinks tent, thanks Di. The morning was very successful, enjoyed by everyone and hopefully will result in new members.

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June 2016 Launch Report

A cold and bleak morning with a stiff wind greeted the smaller than normal turn-out of club members. There were 21 launches for the morning: 14 Low Power, 3 Medium Power and 4 High Power. Most flyers opting for lower altitude flights to avoid the inevitable long walk.

The biggest motor of the day was Ole Kirk's Level 2 attempt with his Tomahawk on a J425 which sadly was not successful when the motor case blew out at 1500 feet.

Lachlan Thomas really earned his L1 which he achieved on his Quicksilver on a H143 Smokey Sam. His simmed altitude of 2600 feet was always going to mean a long hike and the rocket drifted about a kilometer landing in the local river. He wasn't about to let this end his attempt so he got his gear off and went swimming. Definitely an L1 "above and beyond" the normal requirements. Congratulations Lachlan!

It was great to several family groups launching together including new family memberships. Despite the average weather conditions, everyone seemed to enjoy themselves with only one rocket being lost to wind drift.

May 2016 Launch Report

Absolutely perfect launch conditions, not a cloud in the sky making tracking rockets easy and not a breath of wind although reasonably warm in the late 20's.

There were 28 flights for the day, 10 high power, 7 medium power, 10 low power and 1 water rocket. Calisto's were flavor of the day with 7 flights, again demonstrating their versatility flying on motors ranging from Josh Anthony's G54 to Stewart Crisp's I204.

There were 4 successful certification flights for the day. Stewart Crisp achieved his L1 flying his yellow Calisto "Banana Split" on an H87 and then followed up with a flight in the same rocket but powered by an I204 to 4000". Jamie Anderson also earned his L1 flying his Calisto on an H133 as did Rowland Noakes flying a Calisto on an H163. Mario Cendo from QRS North Qld achieved his L2 flying his Hyperloc 835 on a J410, congratulations to all who certified.

The installation of a launch button on the Wilson Launch system created additional excitement particularly for visiting children who got the chance to launch members rockets hopefully igniting a future passion for rocketry.

April 2016 Launch Report

The weekend weather was typical Westmar, warm with clear skies with a morning breeze but dying by lunch time. In short, beautiful rocket launching weather.

There was a total of 43 launches for the weekend the bulk of which were on Saturday with only 2 on Sunday morning. Of these, 21 were High Power, 11 Medium Power and 16 Low Power. Some of the high power launches were very serious with in ascending order: 4 x H, 2 x I, 3 x J, 3 x K, 2 x L, 6 x M and 1 x N.

The largest physical rocket of the weekend was Matt Barton’s "The Big Fokker" at 4.46 meters tall flying on an M2250.

Most powerful was David Bells 1/2 scale Patriot on an N2717 Gorilla flying to 10,00 feet. An additional feature of David's launch was the inclusion of "LISA", an Australian first. I don't think there was a person listening to her commentary during the flight that wasn't impressed by this technology.

Nic Lottering flew his 75mm Minimum Diameter rocket "No Big Deal 2" on an M2245 to an altitude in excess of 45,000 feet. We await confirmation on his breaking the world record for M motors.

Matt Parsons achieved his L1 on Saturday flying his "Small Endeavour" on a H410 Vmax and then followed up on Sunday with his L2 on the same airframe but on a J425 to 5600 feet. Congratulations Matt!

Congratulations to Lachlan Thomas who successfully completed the requirements for the Lift Off Certificate being the first level of three in the Blast Off Program.

The Schuster family launched test rockets in preparation for the upcoming Australian Youth Rocketry Challenge (AYRC). There were plenty of scrambled eggs which meant that it was back to the drawing board!

We had a Kiwi visitor for the weekend, Craig Packard who flew several rockets. Craig is the secretary of the NZRA and is an L3 and being a New Zealander was the subject of many jokes about accents and sheep.

Most prolific launcher was again Mark O'Donoghue who excelled himself this time with 12 flights. Included was the smallest and the most unusual rocket of the launch, his 200mm wing span "Balsa Glider". Powered by an A8, the rocket/aircraft glided back to the ground after motor burnout in a lovely stable flight with a soft touch down.

On Saturday night a BBQ was held with donations going towards the land owners charity, "The Prince Charles Hospital Foundation". A total of $749 was raised, a very respectable sum with the cheque given to the Coggan family for the hospital. After the BBQ, a number of night flights took place: 2 on C motors and 5 on B motors which were particularly enjoyed by the children at the launch.

Another successful launch enjoyed by everyone who attended!

March 2016 Launch Report

Our March "advertised launch" took place on an overcast day, the rain holding off until pack up after midday. The conditions kept the number of visitors down but in spite of this, the launch schedule was busy with a total of 53 launches for the morning. The bulk of the activity was low power with a total of 41 launches which included 20 launches in the "Fly It, Take It" program run by Warren with the assistance of Phil. There were 6 medium power and 6 high power launches.

Cam MacDiarmid achieved his L1 certification on his rocket "David Bowie" flying on a Cesaroni H90. Not content with the complication of certifying on a custom design, Cam also utilised dual deployment instead of the simpler motor deployment. Great job Cam, congratulations!

New member Lachlan Thomas ("Digit" on the forum) successfully launched his new rocket "Laika" 3 times and also launched the smallest rocket of the day, his diminutive 3 inch "Mosquito" on a 1/2 A3 motor.

Most prolific launcher was again Mark O'Donoghue with 6 launches on 5 rockets ranging in power from a 1/2 A3 to a G131. Most unusual rocket of the day would have to be Riley's 2 motor cluster "Hermes" which he flew twice on C6-5 power. This featured off-set upper & lower body tubes and different sized lower fins. Largest flight of the day was Andrew's full size "Rapier Missile" on a K360 which unfortunately suffered a broken fin when the main parachute didn't deploy.

Another great day of rocketry enjoyed by everyone!

February 2016 Launch Report

The day turned out to be magnificent rocket launching weather with a cloudless sky and the early morning breeze dying away by mid morning. Despite only a moderate turnout, there were 45 launches for the morning. The bulk of the flights were low/medium with 9 high power flights, several longer term members dusting off old rockets that hadn't flown for years.

The most prolific launcher was Mark O'Donoghue who had 9 flights which ranged from his tiny "Lucky 7" on an A10-3 to the largest motor of the day with an I 180 in his scratch built rocket "Midnight Nightmare".

Blake wasn't far behind in the multiple launch stakes with 7 launches to test his 2 new SCR kits. He flew the diminutive "Bug" taking the smallest motor of the day with an A8-5 and going up to C6-5. The "Sand Storm" made 4 flights on motors from E31-6 up to an H163-9, both flying well.

Jeremy made multiple water rocket flights including a 2 stage launch. There were several maiden flights including Warrens "Mr 1" on a G80 and Adams "Velocitas", a Wildman Blackhawk copy on a G54. Warren and Adam also had a Calisto drag race, both on H123 Sparkies and as is usually the case, the winner is still in dispute.

Another great rocketry day.

January 2016 Launch Report

Another great launch day, a little warm at 31 degrees and with the usual flocks of flies but no wind. There were 33 launches for the day, a good number as January is usually a quiet launch month.

The biggest motor for the day was Ivan's rocket "L2" which flew to 4800' on a K530 Smokey Sam.

Joseph Turner achieved his L1 on his Calisto called "JAJI Aerospace" flying on an H133, congratulations Joseph. The rest of the turner clan, Mum Anna and sons Isaac & Jeremy also flew a rocket each.

Calisto's seemed to be the flavor of the day with 5 Calisto's making 6 flights. Adam flew on a G57, Joseph on a H133, Warren on an H159 and a G106, Roland on a G77 and Ole on a hugely fast IMAX 348.

David Thomson, a newcomer made his very first rocket flight with his pretty black, gold & white Loc Precision "Norad" which he flew on a G68. Jeremy made 3 water rocket flights including a 2 stage attempt. Matt flew his Viper 3 cluster rocket on 3 E20's and both Roland and Adam flew 2 stage rockets. Adam also successfully flew his scratch built postal rocket "Hyperion" which featured a solid wooden nose cone.

A very enjoyable morning and a great start to the launch year.

December 2015 Launch Report

Cloudy conditions greeted the small crowd of hardy but enthusiastic members to the Christmas themed December launch day which included a number of Christmas rockets being flight. The weather held out all morning and proved to be good conditions for flying rockets.

Although the first launch didn’t occur until well after 8 am the crowd built throughout the day with a final launch tally of 29 flights on motors ranging from A through to K. There were a number of Christmas themed flights including the Santa Express from Patrick, Tinsel Sharky from Jeff and Christmas Angel Flight from Warren. We were also treated to a number of impressive flights of Jeremy's water rockets throughout the course of morning.

First cab off the rank for the day was Matt flying a "Christmas Tree" rocket on a G185 motor complete with fairy lights and tinsel. To quote Ari: "It took a left turn at Albuquerque" after take off...

Trial members Kailyn and Ciara successfully flew their first ever rockets: Blizzard and Bumblebee on B6 motors. We welcomed back Adam after a brief absence as he successfully flew his Callisto on a G131 to 1500 feet and his impressive “Air Commander” two stage rocket on D12-0 / D12-7 motors to 2000 feet. Zigby and Oliver had successful flights of their proven Ballistic Chicken and TARDIS rockets respectively.

Most interesting rockets for the day were Andrew's scratch built ACME rocket and Patrick's Vostok. It was also great to see a Fly-it / Take-it rocket return and being flown by Jaxon and Tyler on an A8 motor. Really cool flight of the day was won by Ivan flying his “Level 2” on a K530 which unfortunately experienced a separation event at 1000 ft. The rocket was recovered intact and will fly again soon.

We had two successful L1 attempts on the day: Garth, Luke and Matthew showing great patience to wait for perfect wind conditions to launch their Callisto on an H255 motor after a successful first flight on a G106 and Riley successfully launched his TRUBLUE to 2400 feet on an H123 motor.

A big thank you to Petar and Matt for running the greatly appreciated post launch sausage sizzle.

Looking forward to seeing everyone again at the January Launch.