July 2017 Akay Launch report

The most memorable feature of Michigan Team-1ís launch event at Alkay Airport on Saturday 07/15/17 might be the weather.  The high temperature peaked in the low 80ís, the humidity was bearable, a mild breeze came out of the west, and the sky was a cloudless beautiful blue the entire day.  Conditions for flying rockets donít get much better than this!
 
Launch operations were set up on the west edge of the runway that runs from northwest to southeast, to account for the wind direction coming from the west.  There were 22 flights total, with the following motor breakdown:
Motor Type
Number
A
 2
B
 
C
1
D
 
E
1
F
2
G
6
H
5
I
 1
J
4
K
 
L
1
 
 
Total
23
 
Jay Calvert, owner of Impulse Buys, was present as a vendor and set up shop near the airport office building.  Itís always a plus when a vendor is present at a rocket launch, and the Team-1 Board of Directors thanks Jay for being present.
The most spectacular flight of the day was, ironically, one of the smallest motors, an A3-4.  Trevor Harrison flew his homemade FAI Rocket from the D-cell as practice for his upcoming participation in the USA Spacemodeling flyoff process in Muskegon.  (You can read more about the spacemodeling competition at http://www.nar.org/contest-flying/fai-spacemodeling/.)  After boosting cleanly to apogee, Trevorís rocket deployed a chrome mylar parachute/balloon recovery system.  Thatís when the weirdness began.  A gentle breeze out of the northwest took the rocket southeast toward Webster Road.  Then a thermal, no doubt a byproduct of the dayís relentless sunshine, took the rocket upward.  Many experienced rocket enthusiasts present commented that this was the first time they had ever seen a rocket under chute go UP.  The duration time was many minutes, and FAI Rocket faded to a dot in the southeast, with occasional glints of sunshine from the mylar.  If anyone on the Discussion Forum knows how this story ended, please update us.
A much-anticipated flight of the day was ex-Prefect Tony Sanfilippoís Polecat Army Hawk on a Cesaroni L-645.  Eight and a half feet tall, 8 inches in diameter, 40 pounds, and white with black fins, this first-flight rocket was equipped with a PerfectFlite altimeter programmed for dual deployment with main at 700 feet.  Tony and an assistant transported the rocket to the Away Cell using a golf cart, and racked it up on Team-1ís large rail.  Army Hawk left the pad on a bright green exhaust plume, then something went wrong.  Instead of the expected 3000-foot altitude, it reached less than 1000 feet, and came down under chute.  Tony, those of us on the Discussion Forum would appreciate a follow-up report from you.  This was one of the largest motors flown yet at Alkay Airport, thanks for the effort, watching an L motor work is always impressive!
The last flight of the day at about 1630 was Norm Nazaroffís LOC Syonic, Silver Streak, on an Aerotech J340 Metalstorm.  You might recall that Norm flew Silver Streak at the June launch on an I280, with the resulting drama involving a local citizen who picked up the GPS-equipped payload/chute.  Bob Schultzís Garmin T5 GPS locator was on this July flight as well.  After a sparky boost to apogee, the recovery system deployed and Silver Streak landed under chute on the airport property east of LCO table.  Upon reaching the rocket, Norm was aghast to learn that the T5 was missing!  It detached from the payload compartment shock cord at ejection and fell to earth on the grassy north-south runway west of the launch site.  It being a GPS locator, it was easy to find, and in spite of free-falling from thousands of feet, it was cheerfully reporting its location to the Garmin 430 handheld unit.  The T5 is a tough piece of equipment!
A new member joined our ranks:  John Hurley from Chesterfield, Michigan.  Welcome to Michigan Team-1, John! 
After successful recovery of Silver Streak, flight operations were terminated and equipment teardown and storage commenced, with many contributing to the effort.  The Board of Directors thanks those who helped.
Michigan Team-1 sincerely thanks Doug Smith for allowing us to pursue our hobby on his airport property.  Doug's work on refurbishing the airport continues, with major work happening on the large hangar south of the hangar where we set up Registration.  Team-1 members lent some muscle to help Doug move a heavy table saw to the hangar and back.
If you have pictures you'd like to share, or an account of how one of your flights went, feel free to respond to this Discussion Forum entry and share with your teammates.
See you at the August launch on 08/19/17!
Respectfully submitted,
Bob
Robert W. Schultz                    
Secretary/Treasurer    
Michigan Team-1
Tripoli Prefecture 9
ď#1 in High Power RocketryĒ
(734) 425-0251
secretary@team1.org

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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