rec.models.rockets FAQ Part 01 - General Information

Archive-name: model-rockets/general
Rec-models-rockets-archive-name: rockets-faq/part01
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Last-modified: 1998 November 16
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Rec.Models.Rockets FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions): PART 1 OF 14
This portion of the r.m.r FAQ is maintained by Buzz McDermott, at Comments, criticisms, suggestions and corrections
for this section should be sent to that email address.
1.1 What, exactly, is a 'model rocket' versus a 'high power' rocket? Where do
liquid fueled and homemade rocket motors fit in? What about amateur
'Model', 'high power', 'advanced', and 'amateur' are all terms which have
many definitions, depending to whom you are speaking. In r.m.r., and in the
FAQ documents, the definitions (if any) accepted by the NFPA, National
Association of Rocketry, and Tripoli High Power Rocketry Association are
used. If these definitions conflict the NAR definition is used.
'Model rockets' are rockets that conform to the guidelines and restrictions
defined in the NFPA 1122 document. These rockets weigh less than 1500
grams, contain less than 125 grams of total fuel, have no motor with
more than 62.5 grams of fuel or more than 160 NS of total impulse, use
only pre-manufactured, solid propellant motors, and do not use metal
body tubes, nose cones or fins. One inconsistency with this is the
CPSC definition of a model rocket motor, which by their definition must
contain no more than 80NS total impulse. NFPA document 1127-94 contains
the most complete definition of a model rocket and the model rocket safety
code. This is the same safety code as adopted by the NAR.
'Large Model Rockets' is a term used in the FAA FAR 101 regulations. It
refers to NAR/NFPA model rockets that are between 454 and 1500 grams
(1 to 3.3 pounds) total liftoff weight or contains more than 113 grams
but less than 125 grams of total fuel.
'High power rockets' are rockets that exceed the total weight, total
propellant or single motor total impulse restrictions of model rockets,
but otherwise conform to the same guidelines for construction materials
and pre-manufactured, commericially made rocket motors. High power rockets
also allow the use of metal structural components where such a material
is necessary to insure structural integrity of the rocket. High power
rockets have no total weight limits, but do have a single motor limit of
no more than O power (40,960NS maximum total impulse) and have a total
power limitation of 81,920NS total impulse. NFPA document 1127-1985 contains
the most complete definition of a high power rocket and also the high power
rocketry safety code. This safety code has been adopted by both the NAR
and TRA. Metal bodied rockets are allowed by NFPA 1127 where metal is
required to insure structural integrity of the rocket over all of its
anticipated flight.
'Amateur' rockets covers all other non-professional rockets that do not
meet the criteria for model or high power rockets. This includes metal
bodied rockets, liquid or hybrid fueled rockets, and rockets with any
type of homemade rocket motor.
'Experimental' rockets is an ambiguous term. In the early 1980's it
was used (reportedly coined by the magazine 'California Rocketry') to
describe rockets that exceeded the model rocket limit at that time (1
pound total liftoff weight and no motor above F power). More recently,
it has been used by the Tripoli Rocketry Association to describe the
class of rockets that use pre-manufactured solid or hybrid rocket
motors but that do not qualify as high power rockets. This includes
metal bodied rockets and those with more than 80,000NS of total
'HPR-lite' is not any type of 'official' rocket designation but has been
used to refer to rockets that exceed the old NFPA model rocket limit of
1 pound but still qualify as NFPA model rocket under current guidelines.
These rockets typically use E through G power and are built with much
the same techniques as high power rockets. This term originated in the
internet 'rec.models.rockets' newsgroup. It should be noted that this
term refers to legal model rockets, not any type of high power rocket,
and might therefore be misleading to many. The term 'Large Model Rocket'
should be used instead.
Another term that has no formal definition but is more and more being
used in the literature is 'hobby rocketry'. This term includes both
model and high power rockets, but excludes amateur rockets. The
term 'consumer rocketry' has also been used, and means the same thing.
The term 'non-professional rocketry' encompasses all forms of model,
high power and amateur rocketry.
Finally, the editor of this document wishes to get on his soapbox for
just one moment and add the term 'stupid rocketry' to cover all those
who attempt to casually produce their own rocket fuel and/or motors
without the benefit of very serious study, and implementation, of the
processes involved and safety measures required. Especially note
that this comment is NOT aimed at serious amateur rocketry
organizations, college level research, etc. End of soapbox.
1.2 NFPA, FAA, DOT, ... Who are all these organizations and how do they
affect the rocketry hobby?
DOT (Dept. of Transportation) regulates shipping of rocket motors and
CPSC (Consumer Products Safety Commission) regulates what may and not
be sold as a 'consumer' items at the retail level.
FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) is responsible for airspace
control and regulates flights of rockets that exceed 1 pound and
enter FAA regulated airspace.
NFPA (National Fire Protection Association) makes recommendations for
use of non-professional rocket motors. Although the NFPA only
makes recommendations, most state and local laws concerning the
use of model rockets are based, at least in part, on NFPA
recommendations; especially NFPA 1122. The NFPA also has a draft
definition and safety code for High Power rockets, NFPA 1127.
BATF (Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms) has responsibility for
regulations concerning storage and use of explosives. This agency
has taken a recent interest in looking into how high power rocket
motors are stored and used.
ATC (Air Traffic Control) You must notify the nearest FAA ATC center
prior to flying Large Model Rockets or High Power Rockets.
1.3 What is the current legal status of model and high power rocketry in the
A. FAA Regulations:
* Rockets containing less than 113 grams of total fuel and weigh
less and one (1) pound do not require any type of FAA notification
and are not restricted by the FAA except where they pose a threat
to aircraft.
FAA "large model rockets" (see the definition in #1, above)
require that the nearest Air Traffic Control center (ATC) be
notified of the launch between 24 and 48 hours prior to the
launch. This is notification and not permission. In the U.S., try
calling 1-800-WX-BRIEF to get the number of the ATC center nearest
* FAA High power rockets (weighing more than 3.3 pounds, containing
HPR motors, or containing a total of more than 125 grams of
fuel) require a formal waiver be approved by the FAA and activated
prior to the launch. Refer to the full r.m.r FAQ (dated 1 Oct 94
or later) for more complete details.
certified flyers to conduct low-end HPR launches (with up to about
240NS composite motors) without having to obtain a waiver.
* Remember that HPR waivers, ATC notification and high power
certification are all separate issues and must all be properly
B. CPSC Regulations/Restrictions:
* G class model rocket motors (80.01-160.00NS total impulse) have been
classified as high power by the CPSC. They are considered model
rocket motors by the NFPA. These motors are now restricted for sale
to buyers 18 years of age or older. This includes the sale of G
reloadable motors.
C. DOT Shipping Restrictions:
Most single use rockets motors with less than 62.5 grams of
propellant are now classified as UN 1.4s and can be shipped via
UPS (with a HAZMAT fee) or regular parcel post.
* Most reloadable rocket motor fuel grains weighing less than 62.5
grams each are now classified as 'flammable solids' and may be
shipped via UPS (with HAZMAT fee) or regular parcel post.
The UPS HAZMAT fee is now $10
* Any single use rocket motor containing more than 62.5 grams of fuel,
and any reloadable motor fuel grain weighing more than 62.5 grams
are classified as UN 1.3c, or Class B, explosives. These motors and
reload grains may be shipped ONLY via Federal Express to certain
designated shipping points.
Aerotech has announced it has received an exemption for single use
motors up to K class and reload grains for at least L, and possibly
M class motors, which allow these motors and reload grains to be
shipped UPS ground in the same manner as motors containing less
than 62.5 grams of propellant. Aerotech says these are now shippable
as class 4.1 flammable solids.
D. BATF Restrictions:
* Any rocket motor or reloadable fuel grain containing more than 62.5
grams of propellant is now classified by the ATF as a Class B Low
Explosive. This includes Aerotech reloads from J power and up.
You must have a federal Low Explosives Users Permit (LEUP) to
legally purchase Class B rocket motors, reloads, and thermalite except
under certain restricted circumstances.
* You must have a federal LEUP to legally store rocket motors or reload
grains which contain more than 62.5 grams of propellant.
You must comply with federal low explosives regulations when
transporting and storing Class B rocket motors.
* You must be 21 years of age to obtain an LEUP.
E. Other High Power Restrictions:
You must be 'high power certified' to fly high power rockets.
* The NAR and Tripoli both have programs for obtaining high power
certification. You need to join one or both of these organizations if
you want to fly high power rockets.
You must be at least 18 years of age to become high power certified.
1.4 I would like to get into Large Model Rockets. What are my options?
Who has NAR certified E, F and G motors today?
The following manufacturers currently have NAR certified E, F and G motors,
as indicated.
Motor Class Manufacturer Propellant Type
E Flight Systems, Inc. Black Powder
E Aerotech/Apogee Composite (ammonium perchlorate)

F Flight Systems, Inc. Black Powder
F Aerotech/Apogee Composite (ammonium perchlorate)
G Aerotech Composite (ammonium perchlorate)
There are 18, 21, 24, 27 and 29 mm diameter motors available. One
manufacturer (Aerotech) has reloadable motor casings for 18, 24, and
29 mm motors.
Several manufacturers sell rockets designed for E through G powered
flight. Refer to the previous list of addresses and get a few catalogs.
R.m.r readers have recommended kits from NCR, THOY, LOC, Aerotech,
Vaughn Brothers, and others. Look for the following
minimum features in E through G powered kits:
- plywood or fiber centering rings rather than paper or cardstock
- plywood, thick plastic, or G10 fins rather than balsa
- thicker motor tubes
- cloth rather than plastic parachutes
- thicker-walled body tubes
Remember to build these models stronger than smaller model rockets. Use
CA and epoxy rather than white or yellow glue. These rockets will
have to survive much higher stresses than smaller model rockets.
1.5 Is the proper term rocket 'engine' or rocket 'motor'?
I don't know. I don't really care. And neither should you! In this
document 'motor' and 'engine' are taken to mean the same thing and both
refer to "the thing in the rocket which makes it go 'whoosh!!' (or 'roar',
if flying high power :-)". If you want a sure way to start a fight with
a fellow rocketeer, just argue that whatever term he/she uses is the wrong
1.6 What do the letters and numbers on a model rocket motor mean?
The NAR has developed a motors classification scheme which has been
mandated by NFPA 1122 and most state regulations. This system
specifies the motors total impulse class, average thrust, and ejection
charge delay. This is printed on any motors certified by the NAR.
the pieces are as follows, given the example:
The first letter indicates the power range, as specified in the table
below. The number to the left of the dash is the average thrust of
the motor, in newtons. The number to the right of the dash is the
approximate ejection delay in seconds starting at the time of motor
burnout. The final letter is an optional manufacturer designation
for motor or fuel type. Note that letter designating total impulse of
the motor specifies an impulse *range*, not an exact total impulse. For
example, there are G motors that have anywhere from 90 to 160 NS of total Aerotech G42 is rated at 90NS and a G40 is rated at 120NS.
Motors with more than either 62.5 grams of total propellant or have more
than 160NS of total impulse are considered High Power motors. You must
be certified to purchase and fly these motors. Soon, it may also become
necessary to have a license to store high power motors.
Andrew Mossberg ( recently posted this chart to
rmr, which includes approximate propellant weights for maximum impulse
motors for each class:
W Low High Low High 200 ISP Propellant
E Limit Limit Limit Limit Weight
R (NtSec) (NtSec) (lbsSec) (lbsSec) (grams) (lbs)
= ======= ======== ========= ========= ======== =======
A 1.26 2.5 0.28 0.56 1.3 0.0028
B 2.51 5.0 0.56 1.12 2.5 0.0056
C 5.01 10.0 1.13 2.25 5 0.0112
D 10.01 20.0 2.25 4.5 10 0.02
E 20.01 40.0 4.5 9 20 0.04
F 40.01 80.0 9 18 41 0.09
G 80.01 160.0 18 36 82 0.18
H 160.01 320.0 36 72 163 0.36
I 320.01 640.0 72 144 326 0.72
J 640.01 1,280.0 144 288 652 1.44
K 1280.01 2,560.0 288 575 1,305 2.88
L 2560.01 5,120.0 575 1,151 2,609 5.75
M 5120.01 10,240.0 1,151 2,301 5,219 11.5
N 10240.01 20,480.0 2,301 4,602 10,438 23.0
O 20480.01 40,960.0 4,602 9,204 20,875 46.0
P 40960.01 81,920.0 9,204 18,409 41,751 92.0
Currently, consumer rocketry stops at rockets with a total of no more
than 81,920NS of total impulse. Anything larger than that is by
definition an amateur rocket.
1.7 What is a CATO? Is it CATO pronounced KAY-TO or CAT-O?
The following definition has been posted to r.m.r. by Jack Hagerty,
( editor of the excellent r.m.r Glossary. For even more
complete information on the term CATO, refer to the glossary.
A motor failure, generally explosive, where all the propellant
is burned in a much shorter time than planned. This can be
a nozzle blow-out (loud, but basically harmless), an end-cap
blow-out (where all of the pyrotechnic force blows FORWARD
which usually does a pretty good job of removing any internal
structure including the recovery system) or a casing rupture
which has unpredictable, but usually devastating, effects.
Another form of CATO is an ejection failure caused by either
the delay train failing to burn or the ejection charge not
firing, but the result is the same: the model prangs.
Opinions on the meaning of the acronym range widely. Some
say it's not an acronym at all, but simply a contraction of
'catastrophic' and should be pronounced 'Cat-o' (which sounds
better than 'cata' over PA systems :-). Others maintain that
it is an acronym but disagree on the meaning, offering a
broad spectrum of 'CAtastrophic Take Off,' 'Catastrophically
Aborted Take Off,' 'Catastrophe At Take Off' and the self
referential 'CATO At Take Off.' The acronym crowd pronounces
it 'Kay-Tow', like the Green Hornet's side kick. It has been
pointed out, though, that all of the above are 'post-hoc'
definitions since LCO's were using the term over range PA
systems long before any formal acronym was established.
1.8 When a consumer rocket motor fails (i.e., CATOs) does it explode or
To be precise, consumer rocket motors do NOT 'detonate'. Black powder
rocket motors 'deflagrate'. Detonation involves the creation of super-
sonic shock waves. Use the term 'explode' when discussing CATOs involving
split motor casings, holes blown out the sides of models, etc.
1.9 Why don't I just make my own model rocket motors? Shouldn't I be able
to custom-make better, more powerful motors at a cheaper price?
This subject has been hotly debated on r.m.r. It is one of those
'emotional' subjects that find people either firmly for or against.
The bottom line is that rec.models.rockets is primarily a newsgroup for
discussing *consumer* rocketry (which covers model rocketry and high
power rocketry). Some amateur issues are discussed, but these are not
the primary focus of the group. Manufacturing your own rocket motors can
be a very dangerous thing to do, unless done properly, and with extreme
care. The odds are you will not make motors that are of any higher quality,
total impulse, reliability, or cost less than pre-manufactured consumer
rocket motors.
It is the opinion of the editor(s) of this FAQ that you should NOT try
to manufacture your own motors. If, however, you insist on partaking
in amateur rocketry, then the editor(s) of this FAQ urge you to get in
contact with an established amateur rocketry group for guidance and
Copyright (c) 1996, 1997, 1998 Wolfram von Kiparski, editor.
Refer to Part 00 for the full copyright notice.
Reply to
Wolfram v.Kiparski
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Archive-name: model-rockets/addresses Rec-models-rockets-archive-name: rockets-faq/part02 Posting-Frequency: weekly Last-modified: 2002 May 14 URL:
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Rec.Models.Rockets Frequently Asked Questions: PART 2 OF 14
Last update: May 29, 2002
This portion of the r.m.r FAQ is maintained by Wolfram v.Kiparski. If you notice any errors, inconsistencies, or ommissions, kindly email Wolf, at so that it can be corrected.
--------------------------------------- 2.1 Are their any national-level rocketry organizations which I might join? What services do they offer?
National Association of Rocketry Model and high power rocketry for P.O. Box 177 aerospace modelers in the U.S. and Altoona, WI 54270 around the world. (800) 262-4872 - sanctions contests and records - NARAM and NSL yearly national competition and sport launches
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- Liability insurance for rocket flying activities Complete information is - "Sport Rocketry" magazine available at the NAR's - Motor safety certification (model web site. and high power rocket motors) - High Power (Level 1-3) flyer certification - NARTREK continuing education program
Tripoli Rocketry Association, Inc. High power rocketry enthusiasts P.O. Box 970010 - Sanctions & insures high power Orem, UT 84097-0010 rocket launches
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- High power certification - Yearly national sport launch (LDRS)
--------------------------------------- 2.2 What are the addresses of some the rocketry manufacturers and suppliers? Do they offer catalogs?
Here is a list of rocketry manufacturers and suppliers. The list is divided into a number of categories. Each address appears only once, but may in fact qualify to fit into more than one category. The rocketry industry is rather dynamic, so if this list is six months old, it may be out of date. The editor(s) of this FAQ can not verify if the companies are, or are not in business. Reasonable attempts have been made at completeness, though it is reasonable that this list may not be complete. If you notice any errors or omissions, kindly email Wolf at, and the corrections will be applied ASAP.
Caveat Emptor
--------------------------------------- 2.2.1 Model and High Power Rocket Manufacturers - kits/motors/supplies/etc.
AAA Model Aviation Fuels OUT OF BUSINESS
Aardvark Rockets mid-to-high power kits
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parts and supplies, custom work
Aerospace Specialty Products Scale and competition kits, parts, P.O. Box 1408 G-10 fiberglass, adhesives, abrasives, Gibsonton, FL 33534 mylar parachutes, sheeting, and tape
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Catalog - $2.00
Aerotech, Inc. Composite motors, reloadables (B - M) 3100 E. Charleston Blvd. Large model rocket kits; high Ste. 123 power rockets, parts, supplies Las Vegas, NV 89104 Hybrid motors (702) 641-2301 (702) 641-1883 FAX
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Apogee Components rocket motors 1/4A - F 1431 Territory Trail Micro Motors (10.5mm) Colorado Springs, CO 80919-3323 Composite B and C motors Long burn D, E, and F motors (Timothy Van Milligan) Kits, supplies, and software (719) 535-9335 Educational materials and books
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Catalog - see website
Binder Design mid-high power rocket kits P.O. Box 13376 parts and components Salem, OR 97309 experimental (503) 581-3180 phone/fax online ordering
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Blackhawk R&D mid-high power rocket kits 1 Grand Central Park parts and supplies Suite 2152 fiberglass parts specialist Keyser WV 26726 (304) 788-7660 online ordering
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Centuri Engineering OUT OF BUSINESS 9/81 Phoenix, AZ
Cesaroni Technology, Inc. Reloadable rocket motors P.O. Box 246 38mm G - J impulse range 2561 Stouffville Road also mfgs Hypertek Hybrid motors Gormley, Ontario CANADA L0H 1G0
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Cluster R See 'Rocket R&D/THOY/Cluster R'
Competiton Model Rockets OUT OF BUSINESS 12/87 Alexandria, VA (see Pratt Hobbies)
Cosmodrome Rocketry E - H power scale rocket kits 1724 W. Great Oak Dr. Tucson, AZ 85746 online ordering (520)295-1529
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Custom Rocket Co. Model rocket kits and parts somewhere in Arizona
Doctor Rocket Licensed manufacturer of Aerotech compatible reloadable motors.
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Dynacom High power rockets (fiberglass P.O. Box 85 and composite components). Boston, PA 15135-0085 Catalog - $3.00 (412) 751-9515
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Eclipse Components OUT OF BUSINESS
Edmonds Aerospace Model rockets and competition 13326 Preuit Place kits, B/G, R/G, RC/G Herndon, VA 22070 Inexpensive, and reputedly of (703) 471-9313 high quality.
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Energon Systems, Inc. OUT OF BUSINESS
Estes Industries, Inc. Model rocket kits & motors P.O. Box 227 Largest rocketry manufacturer 1295 H Street 1/2A through E engines Penrose, CO 81240 (719) 372-6565 (719) 372-3419 FAX (800) 525-7561 (800) 820-0202 replacement parts
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Fat Cat Rockets, Inc. unique custom rocket kits 1465 Orlando Circle model rocket through high power Orlando, FL 32818 (407) 298-1363
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Flight Systems, Inc. OUT OF BUSINESS
Hawk Mountain Enterprises All fiberglass mid-high power kits RD 1 Box 231 G-12 fiberglass tubing, FR4 phenolic New Ringgold, PA 17960 sheet, kevlar, fiberglass nose cones, (570) 943-7644 and more... (570) 943-2735 fax Online ordering Catalog and tube sample: $2.50
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Holverson Designs, Inc. Model rocket kits, rocket/gliders 25075 Co Hwy L20 launch pads, tubes and parts Soldier, Iowa 51572 Centuri-equivalent tubing
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Hypertek Hybrid high power rocket mfg. by Cesaroni Technology motors and launch systems. P.O. Box 246 (I, J, L, and M total impulse) 2561 Stouffville Road Gormley, Ontario CANADA L0H 1G0
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Kosdon East reloadable rocket motors c/o Paul Robinson E-M impulse range 5 Old Bridge St. South Pelham, NH 03076
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(The) Launch Pad midpower and clustered model rocket 477 North Carolina Road kits and plans. Manquin, VA 23106 specializes in scale military missiles Catalog - $2.75
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(see part 07 of this FAQ)
Lawn Dart Rocketry model rocket kits 879 Westfield Row reproduction classic kits Acworth, GA 30102-6900 helicopter duration kits CogAero dealer
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LOC/Precision Large model rocket kits; high P.O. Box 470396 power rocket kits; Broadview Heights, OH 44147 parts and supplies; (440) 546-0413 Catalog - $4.00 (440) 546-7942 fax
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Maximum Thrust Rocketry Big kits for Big HPR a division of RDS formerly HOTT Rockets
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see also Rocket Dyanamic Systems entry
Model Rectifier Corporation OUT OF THE ROCKET BUSINESS
Nordic Rocketry Model Rocket kits P.O. Box 1164 mid-power, high power Wisconsin Rapids, WI 54495-1164 Catalog - $1.00 (715) 424-0240 - free with email request
North Coast Rocketry OUT OF THE BUSINESS
Nova Hobbies scale model rocket kits PO Box 70547 space history oriented Fairbanks, AK 99707-0547 ASP kit (see part 7 of FAQ) (James Wentworth)
Original Rockets, Inc. scale models of old kits for HPR P.O. Box 611722 Port Huron, MI 48061-1722 (810)982-3690 voice (810)985-4643 fax
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Propulsion Polymers hybrid rocket motor systems RR#3 38mm I140 motor Smiths Falls, ON Canada K7A 4S4
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Public Enemy Rockets mid-to-high power rocket kits RWW Distributing clustered, scale, etc. PO Box 6001 Catalog - $2.00 Moreno Valley, CA 92554-6001 909/243-7398 (Roy Weid)
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Public Missiles, Ltd. Large model rockets and high power 349 Cass Ave., Suite C rocket kits, parts, and supplies Mt. Clemens, MI 48043 phenolic tubing, G-10 fins (810) 468-1748 Catalog: $3.00 (810) 465-2911 FAX
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Qualified Competition Rockets Offers a wide variety kits for c/o Kenneth Brown competition rocketry, incl. 7021 Forest View Drive piston launchers, tubing, Springfield, VA 22150 NARTREK packages, publications
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inexpensive Catalog: SASE
Quest/Toybiz Inc. Model rocket kits & engines (A-C), P.O. Box 42390 launch systems, and supplies 519 West Lone Cactus Drive Catalog: FREE Phoenix, Arizona 85989-2390 (800) 858-7302 (toll free) (602) 582-3438 (voice) (602) 582-3828 (fax)
R.A.T.T. Works Hybrid rocket motor systems 1504-A Industrial Park Street 29mm and 64mm (H/I and K) Covina, CA 91722 launch rails and rods (626) 967-2242 (626) 967-9044 (fax)
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Rocket Dynamic Systems Big kits for HPR PO Box 801208 mid-HIGH power Santa Clarita CA. 91380-1208 (888) 692-9548
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Rocketflite BACK IN BUSINESS! 836 Houston Dr. Magnalite Igniters in kit form New Haven, IN 46774 ignition systems (Greg Dyben)
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Rocketman Enterprises, Inc. High power rocket kits, recovery 8337 Penn Avenue South systems, videos and launch Bloomington, MN 55431 support systems (800) 732-4883 Catalog - $3.00 (612) 884-3424 FAX
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Rocket R & D HPR kits and supplies, also 209 N. Main Street THOY/Cluster R dealer Homer, IL 61849 tubes, centering rings, parts, (217) 896-3041 nose cones, chutes. (217) 896-3042 (FAX)
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Rogue Aerospace Corporation Model rocket kits, parts, and P.O. Box 596 supplies Lexington Park, MD 20653 Catalog - FREE (410) 326-3761 (508) 462-0729 fax
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Scotglas Manufacturing fiberglass components 7215 Gillett Road nose cones Canutillo, TX 79835 (915) 877-4405
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Shecter Rockets Model rocket kits and parts: 20505 E Clear Spring CT BT-5 to BT-55, inexpensive, Walnut, CA 91789-3887 Catalog - $1.00
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Shrox Industria fantasy-scale model rocket kits
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Smokin Rockets big high power kits 183 Walnut St. Northvale, NJ 07647
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Stellar Dimensions OUT OF BUSINESS
Tiffany Hobbies of Ypsilanti (THOY) See 'Rocket R&D/THOY/Cluster R'
Trailing Edge Technologies Igniter manufacturer for all types of motors (214) 670 5244 micro through Level III HPR (Jim Turner)
True Modelers Rocket Kits kits for the true modeler/craftsman P.O. Box 186 scale and scale-like model rockets Harbeson, DE 19951 (302) 684-5419 order online
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Vaughn Brothers Rocketry Model and high power rocket kits 4575 Ross Drive kits and supplies; group launch Paso Robles, CA 93446-7320 systems (805) 239-3818 Catalog - $2.00 (805) 239-0292 (fax)
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VectorAero R/C Rocket Gliders (Kevin McKiou)
Vulcan Systems, Inc. OUT OF BUSINESS
Yank Enterprises High power rocket kits 1004 Ollie Lane parts and supplies Plymouth, WI 53073 (920) 254-0657 (810) 454-0152
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--------------------------------------- 2.2.2 Electronics/Recovery Systems/Other Rocketry Components and Supplies
ACME Engineering composite fin canisters for HPR
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conformal launch lugs
Adept Rocketry Electronic stagers, timers, 2545 Overlook Drive altimeters, flight computers. Broomfield, CO 80020 Catalog - $2.00
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Aero Pack International/Missile Systems Phenolic airframe tubing, 8190E Mira Mesa Blvd. 308 threaded aluminum motor Miramar, CA 92126 retainers (619) 566-2900 FAX
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The b2 Rocketry Company Parachutes for high power rocketry
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Balsa Machining Services Balsa and hardwood nose cones, centering rings, 11995 Hillcrest Dr. transitions, and fins Lemont, IL 60439-4145 semi-custom work (630) 257-5420 Replica Estes/Centuri nose cones (630) 257-0341 (fax) Tower Launcher Catalog - download from web site
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Black Sky Research Associates altimeters, timers, launch rails 3179 Roosevelt St. electic matches, ignition systems Carlsbad, CA 92008 38mm reloadable motors and reloads (619) 730-3702 (voice) hydrid motor dealer (619) 730-3704 (fax) high power kits
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Cotriss Technology OUT OF BUSINESS
Emmanuel Avionics, Inc. OUT OF BUSINESS
Giant Leap Rocketry most inexpensive phenolic tubing 6061 Hibiscus Drive on the rocketry market Baton Rouge, LA 70808 G10 fiberglass sheet (504) 769-6040 evenings and weekends fiberglass nose cones (504) 769-0710 FAX custom work
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Impulse Aerospace Ignition and recovery systems, 22833 Bothell Way SE, Suite 1148 launch pads, high power supplies, Bothell, WA 98021 tubular nylon, (800) 568-2785
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Jim Walston Retrieval Systems Electronic rocket locators 725 Cooper Lake Road, S.E. (transmitter/receiver) Smyrna, GA 30082 Catalog - FREE (404) 434-4905 (800) 657-4672
Mach 1 Industries Inc. Balsa-Ply specialty balsa plywood 20 W. Lake St. airframe tubing, nose cones, modeling Chisholm, MN 55719 supplies, and rocket kits (888) 225-4007 Catalog - FREE
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Missile Works Corp. R/C ejection systems, barometric altimeters 453 East Wonderview Ave. mid-high power scale kits Estes Park, CO 80517 flexible phenolic/kraft hybrid tubing (303) 823-9222 tel/fax online ordering
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North Country Radio CCD cameras, transmitter/receiver PO Box 53 Wykagyl Station kits, and other electronics New Rochelle, New York 10804-0053 suitable for rocketry use. (914) 235-6611 (914) 576-6051 fax
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Perfectflite microAlt Alitmeter - fits in BT-50 15 Pray Street Amherst, MA 01002 (413) 549-3444
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Pratt Hobbies Nomex recovery systems & cool rocket stuff 2513 Iron Forge Road altimeters, kits, kevlar Herndon, VA 20171 NiCad systems. CMR-style nose cones (703) 689-3541 (voice/fax) and egg capsules. Catalog: FREE
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Retro Rocket Works OUT OF BUSINESS
Robby's Rockets Ignition and ejection P.O. Box 171 supplies Elkhart, IN 46515 Catalog: $1.00 in postage on (219) 679-4143 large SASE, or $2 for catalogs
Sentell Enterprises Parachutes, streamers, and 104 Linden Drive other recovery devices. Hendersonville, TN 37075-2032 Catalog - $1.00 (800) 4-CHUTES (orders only) (includes fabric samples) (615) 822-6565
Sonic Systems Ltd Custom nosecone for LOC 7.67" 4509 East Hobart nice cones Mesa, Arizona 85205 Clear polycarbonate tubing
Spherachutes Parachutes/recovery devices. 433 38th Ave. Catalog: $1 (includes fabric Greeley, CO 80634 sample) (877) 4CHUTES
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Tango Papa Decals Reproduction decals from out of 1901 Mitman Rd. production Estes and Centuri kits Easton, PA 18040 Mars Lander kits, upscale decals, (610) 252-8543 decal paper, printer cartridges
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Thrust Aerospace OUT OF BUSINESS
Top Flight Recovery Recovery devices (parachutes, S12621 Donald Road X-form chutes, and streamers). Spring Green, WI 53588 Catalog: $2.00 (608) 588-7204
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Totally Tubular rocket tube supplier - wide variety 10555 McCabe Rd. 6mm through 4.5" size Brighton, MI 48116-8526 couplers and rings (810) 231-6474 FAX hard to find items (Jim Fackert) nomex paper, kevlar cord
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Transolve Corporation Timers, altimeters, location 6501 Sebert #3 beepers, etc. Cleveland, Ohio 44105 Catalog: FREE (216) 341-5970
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Tru Point Products, Inc. Heavy duty launch pads 140 Baker St. Coloma, MI 49038 (616) 486-4611
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--------------------------------------- 2.2.3 Miscellaneous suppliers
For those of you who like to buy their tubing, balsa, and other materials in bulk, this section may have the supplier that you are looking for. Also included are suppliers of the kind of goods that many of us find useful for model and high power rocketry. While there are very many sources of materials from which one can build rockets, and there is no way that a list can completely cover this broad category. Here is a list of companies that have been mentioned on r.m.r., or have been recommended to the author. No company listed in this section is a rocketry specialty company. Many of the companies in the preceding sections also sell "raw materials," so rocketry-related questions are best directed to them.
Ace Resin Resin casting and molding supply 7481 E. 30th St. polyurethane rubber and Tucson, AZ 85710 RTV rubber, supplies (520) 886-8051
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Aerospace Composite Products Composite building materials 14210 Doolittle Drive fiberglass, kevlar, carbon San Leandro, CA 94577 Full line of supplies and orders: (800) 811-2009 equipment technical: (510) 352-2022 Custom fabrication and FAX: (510) 352-2021 specialty products
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Alexander Aeroplane Company Composite building materials P.O. Box 909 Griffin GA 30224 (800) 831-2949 Catalog - FREE
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Alumilite Corporation resin casting and molding supply 315 North Street resins and supplies Kalamazoo, MI 49007 will send literature, specs, (800) 447-9344 and cured samples on request (616) 488-4001 FAX
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American Science & Surplus All kinds of surplus, used, and 3605 Howard St. new equipment, gadgets, gizmos, Skokie, IL 60076 and useful odds and ends. (847) 982-0870 Their address here is for mail (800) 934-0722 FAX order, but they also have
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retail stores in Chicago, Geneva (IL), and Milwaukee.
Balsa USA Balsa, basswood, plywood, P.O.Box 164 and adhesives, Marinette, WI 54143 fresh US-mfg CA (906) 863-6421 Wholesale prices (800) BALSA-US orders only Catalog - $2.00
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Bare Metal Foil and Hobby Co. Por-A-Kast, Por-A-Mold dealer P.O. Box 82 urethane resin molding and Farmington, MI 48332 casting, adhesive metal foil, (248) 477-0813 decal paper
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The Castolite Company casting resins 4915 Dean St. polyester resins and rubber Woodstock, IL 60098 (815) 338-4670 (815) 338-4671 FAX
Composite Structures Technology Composite materials P.O. Box 622 fiberglass,kevlar,carbon,epoxy, Tehachapi, CA 93581 foam core, vacuum bagging, etc. (800) 338-1278 Catalog - FREE
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occasionally sells materials at bargain prices.
Fibre Glast Developments Corp. Large supplier of composite 1944 Neva Drive materials, polyester and epoxy Dayton, OH 45414 resins, vacuum bagging equipment, (800) 821-3283 and all related supplies Catalog - FREE
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McMaster-Carr Supply Company Looked everywhere? P.O. Box 440 Can't find that "rocket part" New Brunswick, NJ 08903-0440 anywhere? Give McMaster a call.
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Micro-Mark Small tool company. 340 Snyder Ave. The company isn't small! Berkeley Heights, NJ 07922-1595 Perfect tools for working on (800) 225-1066 rockets.
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Middlesex Paper Tube Company, Inc. Large manufacturer of paper tubes P.O. Box 588 I.D.'s from 0.250" to 18.000" 345 Chelmsford Street Lowell, MA 01851 (800) 466-9317 (978) 458-9317 FAX
Para-Gear Equipment Co., Inc. Full-service parachuting supply 3839 West Oakton Street company. Skokie, IL 60076-3438 Parachute fabric, tapes, threads, 708/679-5905 cords, webbing, and hardware. 708/679-8644 - FAX Nylon, nylon, nylon!!! 800/323-0437 (orders - outside IL only) Catalog - $5.00 (refundable)
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Paramount Tube Division Large manufacturer of P.O. Box 80400 paper tubes. Fort Wayne, IN 46898 I.D.'s 0.093" - 12.000" (219) 484-4111 (219) 483-0393 FAX
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Peck Polymers Japanese tissue for tissuing P.O. Box 710399 those contest gliders. Santee, CA 92072-0399 Dethermalizer fuse, wood, (619) 448-1818 free-flight glider kits
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Jetex dealer
SIG Manufacturing Co., Inc. Balsa, basswood, plywood. 401-7 S. Front St. Wood building supplies for Montezuma, IA 50171-0520 hobbyist, and more... (800) 247-5008 (Orders) Catalog - $3.00, or order online
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--------------------------------------- 2.2.4 Mail Order Sources
This is a very incomplete list. Check out the pages of 'High Power Rocketry' or 'Sport Rocketry' for many more possibilities. Check your phone book too!
Advanced Rocketry Group Ltd. (ARG) Model and high power rocket kits, 130 Matheson Blvd., East - Unit 10 parts, motors, and supplies. Mississauga, Ontario L4Z 1Y6 Also mfgs their own line of kits, (905) 501-0456 Imported Competition supplies, (905) 501-1846 fax airframe tubes, scale data, scale kits
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Ballistic Bob Model and high power rocket kits, 1575 Catalina Blvd. parts, motors, and supplies San Diego, CA 92107 20% discount on everything (619) 224-6435
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Belleville Wholesale Hobby Estes motors, 1944 Llewellyn Road rocket kits, supplies, etc., Belleville, IL 62223-7904 at 30-40% discount from (618) 398-3972 retail. (618) 398-3477 (fax) Catalog - $3.00
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Bobby Hall's Hobby House Model and high power rocket kits, 4822 Bryan Street parts, motors, and supplies Dallas, TX 75204 (214) 821-2550
Bruckner Hobbies Estes, Quest, Aerotech, Launch 3587 E. Tremont Ave. Pad, Top Flite Recovery, Bronx, NY 10465 1/2A - G motors. (718) 863-3434 (Info) Catalog - Free (800) 288-8185 (Orders only)
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Commonwealth Displays, Inc. Model and high power rocket kits, 12649 Dix-Toledo Road parts, motors, and supplies. Southgate, MI 48195 Catalog - $2.00 (734) 282-1055
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Countdown Hobbies Model and high power rocket kits, 7 P.T. Barnum Square parts. motors, and supplies; Bethel, CT 06801-1838 discontinued kits; space, (203) 790-9010 (voice/fax) science, and collectors items catalog - $3.00 ($3 Canada, (Kevin Nolan) $4 overseas)
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C&T Hobbies Inc. Model and high power rocket kits, 10181 Townline Rd. parts, motors, and supplies Cheboygan, MI 49721 (616) 627-3603
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Discount Hobby Center Model and high power rocket kits P.O. Box 370 parts, motors, and supplies Utica, NY 13503 (315) 733-3741 (315) 733-1723 FAX
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Discount Rocketry Aerotech, Apogee, Binder, Edmonds, 25944 Kaywood Court Cosmo., Custom, LaunchPad, LOC, Escondido, CA 92026-8408 Quest, Estes, more (760) 432-9626 Miss Rocket Booster posters (Kevin Funk)
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Magnum Rockets, Hobbies and More, Inc. Model and high power rocket kits, P.O. Box 124 motors and supplies. "Class B" Mechanicsburg, Ohio 43044 motor sales. Hybrid motors. (513) 834-3306 (voice and fax) Catalog - $4.00
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Orbital Dynamics, Inc. Model and high power rocket kits, P.O. Box 45375 motors and supplies. Rio Rancho, NM 87174-5375 (505) 994-4000 Voice (505) 994-1000 Fax
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Red Arrow Hobbies Model and high power rocket kits, 5095 Red Arrow Hwy. motors and supplies. Stevensville, MI 49127 (616) 429-8233 Catalog - FREE email:
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Ring Rocketry Model rocket kits, motors, supplies 206 East Mary Street specialty and hard-to-find items Holland, IN 47541 (812) 536-5000 (Chad Ring)
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Rocket Science HPR and model rocketry dealer Larry Smith kits, motors and supplies. 2714 Augusta Hwy. "Class B" motor sales Lexington, SC 29072 Hypertek dealer (800) 221-7205
Space Modeling Solutions Model and high power rocket kits, 486 East Devon Drive motors, parts, and supplies. Gilbert, AZ 8529 (480) 497-1960 (703) 832-3237 Fax
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Uptown Sales Inc., The Hobby Place Discount Estes dealer 33 North Main St. Chambersburg, PA 17201 catalog - $1.00 refundable (800) 548-9941 orders only
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Zeppelin Hobbies Model and high power rocket kits, 92 Route 23 North motors and supplies. Riverdale, NJ 07457-1200 (973) 831-7717 (973) 831-5989 Catalog - FREE
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--------------------------------------- 2.2.5 Sources for Out-of-Production Model Rocket Kits
Wondering if you can ever find and build that old kit you that you once had? Give these folks a call (find their addresses, phone numbers, etc. in the preceding section).
Countdown Hobbies Estes, Centuri, MPC, Cox, and more... kits, parts, ephemera
--------------------------------------- 2.2.6 Books/Videos/Computer Software/Technical References
NAR Technical Services (NARTS) Plans, technical reports, scale P.O. Box 1482 data and more. Saugus, MA 01906 Catalog: Free to NAR members and also on r.m.r archive and www.
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Odyssey Productions Videos high power and model P.O. Box 450264 rocket launches Garland, TX 75045-0264 (972) 495-8576
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Point-39 Productions Videos of high power rocket c/o Earl Cagle, Jr. rocket launches (like LDRS) 1607 Apple Valley Drive Augusta, Georgia 30906 (706) 790-5544 (Earl Cagle)
Raging Rockets 'How to' videos for high power (800) 899-2788 rocketry.
Rogers Aeroscience Altitude prediction software P.O. Box 10065 and reference materials. Lancaster, CA 93584-0065 Rocketry books - new and used (818) 349-4825
Saturn Press Books on scale rocketry, P. O. Box 3709 rocketry scale reference Ann Arbor, MI 48106-3709 materials, a great rockets (313) 677-2321 of the world poster. (see section on books) (Peter Alway) Catalog: FREE
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--------------------------------------- 2.2.7 International (outside U.S.A.) rocketry sources.
The following is a listing of rocketry dealers, suppliers, manufacturers, hobby shops, etc. This listing is very incomplete. Please send comments and revisions to so that this listing can be updated. In the future, it is hoped that Part 13 of the rec.rockets.models FAQ will handle this section. Please refer to Part 13 of the FAQ for more information.
Advanced Rocket Components High-power rocketry supplier P.O. Box 12957 motors, kits, books, supplies London W12 0WE England, UK 44 (0) 181 932 7772
Aerospace Education Model rocketry and high power Box 13-368 Onehunga kits, engines, and supplies Auckland NEW ZEALAND 09-624 3091 09-624 2165 (FAX)
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Atlas Ingenjorsfirma AB Manufacturer Nordana 147 Scale rocket kits S-232 91 Arlov Model rocket motors (1/2A - D) Sweden 46 40-44 55 80
Rocketeers Model rocketry and high power Box 7032 kits, engines, and supplies Roodeport SOUTH AFRICA 1715 011 27 11 475 0880
List of known European Manufacturers and Dealers:
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What are some good books to read to learn more about model and high power rocketry?
Handbook of Model Rocketry, Sixth Edition G. Harry Stine Synopsis: THE handbook on model rocketry. Covers just about everything you need to get started. Good tips for experienced modelers as well. Sixth edition was published March 1994. Available from several sources, including NARTS.
Basics of Model Rocketry, 2nd edition Douglas R. Pratt Kalmbach Books, 1993 Synopsis: A general introduction to model rocketry. The 2nd edition is highly revised and has become available as of Jan. 1993. The first edition is very Estes/Centuri/FSI oriented. The second edition includes sections on composite motors, Aerotech, NCR and other more recent manufacturers.
Model Rocket Design and Construction Timothy S. Van Milligan ( Kalmbach Books, 1995 Synopsis: 120 pages, 16 chapters, 240 illustrations, 40 photographs; This book is geared towards modelers wanting to know more about the art and science of building better rockets. Includes chapters on design, improving performance, constructions and other topics. The coverage of glider and helicopter recovery, the glossary, and construction and repoir techniques is very good.
69 Simple Science Fair Projects with Model Rockets: Aeronautics Timothy S. Van Milligan ( Published by Apogee Components ISBN 0-9653620-0-0 Synopsis: 104 pages pages consisting of 5 chapters and 3 appendicies; including 83 illustrations. Soft cover with 4-color artwork. This book contains topic ideas for rocketry related science fair projects from very simple experiments that can be done in an afternoon, to some complex ones that require more sophisticated measuring equipment. Each project begins with some background information that explains why the topic is important and should be researched. Most projects also give a starting point that tell what type of equipment may be needed, and also where the experimenter should go for additional background research. This is not a cookbook approach, as the actual experiment must be designed by the researcher.
The Model Rocketry Handbook Stuart Lodge Argus Books 1990 ISBN 1-85486-047-X Synopsis: British handbook on model rocketry. Geared towards beginners, but some good tips for more experienced rocketeers.
Stu's Space: The Gospel According to Stuart Lodge Stuart Lodge 25 Huntington Drive Castle Donington Derby DE74 2SR U.K. Synopsis: A more advanced book than his "The Model Rocketry Handbook". Includes 10 chapters on Construction Techniques, Ignition and Launch Systems, Recovery Systems, Stability, and more. Self published by Stuart using high quality photocopies. Available directly from Stu.
Rockets of the World, 2nd edition Peter Alway ( Saturn Press, 1995 Synopsis: This book contains information on more than 200 versions of 137 rockets from 14 countries and Europe. An absolute must buy for scale modeling enthusiasts and rocketry enthusiasts in general. Available via mail order from Saturn Press, NARTS, Quest, Countdown Hobbies, Magnum, Mountainside Hobbies and other sources.
Retro Rockets: Experimental Rockets 1926-1941 Peter Alway ( Saturn Press, 1996 Synopsis: More than 30 rockets flown by Robert Goddard and his contemporaries, depicted with dimensioned drawings, color-keyed drawings, and photographs. Historical backgraound for each. 96-page hardcover.
Second Stage: Advanced Model Rocketry Michael A. Banks Kalmbach Books, 1985 Synopsis: A good introduction to E/F/G level rocketry. Some good construction hints.
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Rocket Propulsion Elements, An Introduction to the Engineering of Rockets. George P. Sutton. Sixth Edition, A Wiley-Interscience Publication, John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 1992
Teaching Science Through Model Rocketry Tony Wayne 3 Pigs Publishing, 1994 Synopsis: The book is for the individual who teaches rocketry to others or is looking for another aspect of science to teach. It covers lesson plans, class setup, physics demonstrations, rocketry labs, rocket science background, teaching aides and more. Over 250 pages. Contact: Tony Wayne 58 Court Place Charlottesville, VA 22901-2457
--------------------------------------- 2.4 Are there any rocketry magazines available?
"Sport Rocketry" Journal of the National Association of Rocketry Published 6 times/year Subscription: Sport Rocketry c/o National Association of Rocketry Headquarters P.O. Box 177 Altoona, WI 54270 (800) 262-4872
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"Extreme Rocketry" "An alternative rocketry magazine" Oriented towards large high power projects Subscription: Extreme Rocketry 109 E. Charleston Suite 101 Las Vegas, NV 89104
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"High Power Rocketry Magazine" An independent consumer rocketry magazine. Formerly the journal of the Tripoli Rocket Society. Published irregularly 9 times/yr. or so subscription $37.50/year Subscription: High Power Rocketry PO Box 96 Orem, Utah 84059
--------------------------------------- Copyright (c) 1996-2002 Wolfram von Kiparski, editor. Refer to Part 00 for the full copyright notice.
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