Copperheads & Aerotech...any tips?

Hello, was out at the park yesterday and finally got to fly my
Onyx...beautiful flight on an F20-4 Econojet. My question for the
group is this...my wife & I had a devil of a time trying to get the
ignitor inserted into the slot in the propellent grain. Took us nearly
half an hour for the F25-6 motor I had hoped to use for a second flight
(but then the ignitor turned out to be bad so we gave up!). As it
stands now, trying to insert the ignitor is like trying to push a wet
noodle it just wants to bend rather than go into the slot and several
ignitors had the pyrogen fall apart trying to get them inserted. Does
anybody have any tips they care to share on how this process might be
made a little easier? Any tools you use? Other brands of ignitor to
consider? Thank you!
Craig
Reply to
caheaton
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If the accordion folded tip is not completely covered in pyrogen, it can flop around (wet noodle) and be annoying to insert. if you get one with pyrogen completely covering the accordion folded area and just below, the pyrogen stiffens it and allows it to be inserted easily.
Notify Aerotech of your igniter difficulties. If you got defective igniters, they should send you replacements.
Magnelite pyrogen on thin wires with nichrome wire at the tip works great for me as a replacement igniter.
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-Fred Shecter NAR 20117
Reply to
Fred Shecter
Sometimes the nozzle throat is plugged because the molding process didn't happen correctly. When that has happened, I used an Exacto knife for clean out the hole. Don't enlarge the hole.
On RMS motors, I've put the ignitor in through the nozzle and into the core while assambling the motor. This isn't the greatest way to do it from a safety perspective. If in the unlikely event the ignitor lights, it could ruin your day.
Phil
Reply to
Phil Stein
Ever wonder just how unlikely that is? I was watching "Dirty Jobs" the other night, and they were working in a coal mine. Guy drills some holes in the wall, then walks up with a box of dynamite sticks and yep, you guessed it, the electrical devices to cause the explosion were already inserted into the dynamite.
Reply to
Tweak
That's very unlikely, and the danger would be less than if the same unlikely event occurred when you inserted the igniter the "right" way.
The real concern about inserting the igniter during assembly is that the igniter head can't exit the nozzle during ignition, thereby plugging the nozzle and causing a CATO. Shouldn't be a problem with the igniter that came with the reload, but it might be a problem with other igniters. Just check the fit in the nozzle to make sure.
Reply to
Steve Humphrey
ok. Change unlikely to very unlikely. Still, no matter how unlikely, they should know it is possible.
As far as clogging the nozzle, if they cleaned out the nozzle as suggested in my first statement, it shouldn't happen.
Phil
Reply to
Phil Stein
If you want to avoid it lighting by itself short the lead until its ready for launch. For crapperheads you will have to use a microclip or something....
Reply to
tai fu
I think I've got it! :-) Tonight I tried inserting the ignitors from home, and found that if I use my laser pointer to first spot the slot, then mark where that slot is with my finger, I can slide the ignitor in. Much easier if I can see where the slot is and what angle of attack I need for inserting the ignitor. (I use the laser pointer as it gives me a nice bright spot on the propellent grain that seems to illuminate the entire grain.) Think what I'll do is just pre-insert ignitors into the motors I plan to use that day as a time saving measure.
My thanks for all the replies...I do have an AT clip, but I actually find tape on my micro clips (smooth jawed) seems to work better. I can get the clips on more quickly without undue bending of the fine copper ribbon. I'm intrigued by the Magnelites, though. I just might make up a batch by dipping the pyrogen onto coils of very fine nichrome wire. Might make for a smaller ignitor that is easier to insert for the times that the slots give me trouble. Should also be more reliable for clustering too. Craig
Reply to
Craig
I like igniterman better... you can use any scrap wire you have laying around. As for laser pointers, make sure you use a 5 dollar 5 milliwatt red laser pointer!!! DO NOT use a wicked laser... not only you risk blinding yourself, but you might actually light the motor with the laser! (they are powerful enough to light matches, I can light match with mines)
Reply to
tai fu
AT's instructions for the 18mm reload is to:
Install forward end Install fuel Install ignitor install nozzle and aft end.
The B7 motors from Apogee were about the most difficult (came with baby copperheads)!
Andy
Phil Ste> ok. Change unlikely to very unlikely. Still, no matter how unlikely,
Reply to
Andy Eng
Interesting...I didn't think ANY consumer pointer was that powerful! Thanks for the tip. Luckily, mine is a low power model. It's built into a ball point pen and previously I used it to torment...er play :-) with the dog (it bugs him when the spot lands on his paw and then darts under a chair...he goes sniffing after it, which begs the question...just what does a spot of light smell like! :-) ). Craig
Reply to
Craig
Many range rules frown on installing ignitors in HPR models until they are on the pad. The HPR safety code says "...electrical motor igniters that are installed in the motor only after my rocket is at the launch pad or in a designated prepping area."
Reply to
Bob Kaplow
The $5 pointers are hardly 5mw. You've got to get a good one for a good bit more change to get close to the 5mw limit. Even the ones rated at 5mw are usually way below unless hand tweaked for maximum output. I just tried my tweaked GREEN 5mw laser, and not only doesn't it light a match, it doesn't even warm it up a bit.
Still, heed the warning: "Do not look into laser beam with remaining eye".
Reply to
Bob Kaplow
I've made hand dipped igniters small enough to ignite these motors, that can be installed after assembly.
They work fine on these motors too. An old friend told me that the best igniter for thse small composites were the old MRC igniters, which are the same as the new Quest igniters.
Reply to
Bob Kaplow
Unlike cats, dogs seem to know where the light is coming from. My dog goes nuts as soon as the laser pointer (or maglite) is in my hand. And she even goes to the drawer that they are kept in, stares at the drawer, then at you, and will bark until you get the hint.
Recently I was in a room, and shined the laser UNDER the door and drove her nuts with that.
Of course you have to be careful. I heard a story from someoe who always shined the laser pointer onthe same spot on the wood kitchen floor. One day they left the dog alone, and he decided to find the spot, UNDER the floor. The supposedly indestructible floor. that the manufacturer witht he lifetime warranty couldn't believe had been destroyed by a dog.
Reply to
Bob Kaplow
I feel your pain. :-( I've fiddled away lots of time messing with copperheads trying to get them to work too. A tip that someone told me that works well is to melt the leads apart with a Bic lighter. (on the non-pyrogen end of course!!) It makes hooking up a bit easier.
Hey Gary!!! Are you listening? Most of your customers hate Crapperheads! I for one would be willing to pay a bit more for a reload that had a quality igniter.
Joe Michel
Reply to
J.A. Michel
One of our cats will immediately look at me when I turn off the laser pointer while the other continues to look for the dot. Our dog isn't interested in the dot at all.
-- Roger
Reply to
Roger Smith
try this one....
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those greens are on the order of 55mw or 75mw and stuff... they will light matches. I have the 55mw ones, and I tweaked it a bit by turning the pot and now it lights matches in less than one second. It will warm up though the site has listed its duty as 100 second on and 10 second off. Dont look into it, it will blind you faster than you can blink. And dont ever shine them into motor grains because they are dark colored and absorbs green quite well... if you do manage to light it they will most likely chuff but you never know... Some people have reported to light black powder with this...
Reply to
tai fu
Craig, That what I used to do, except I used a flashlight to find the slot. Your laser idea is much better. I'd take a razor blade & mark the location of the slot on the edge of the nozzle. I think AT sells some better ignitors than the Copperheads that you can purchase. Darian
Reply to
Darian
It's a silly rule.
Reply to
Tweak

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