December high-power launch status (revisited)

As expected, Elsberry got additional rain (and possibly a little snow) and we are still unable to use the launch field. There will be no launch this weekend.

Therefore, at this point, there are no further launches scheduled for 2014. Please continue to check this site for current information about our launch activities in 2015 - and either register here, so you get direct emails with announcements, or follow our Facebook page - or both!

Unless we get both unseasonably warm and dry weather this winter and significant desire from flyers for a winter launch, the earliest we will probably start planning for a spring launch will be late February.

So stay tuned! Let us know what you're building and what you want to fly with us (again, please post to our Facebook page). Happy holidays, and we'll see you next year.

Belleville West High School TARC team

SLRA member Mike Fischer is mentoring the TARC (Team America Rocket Challenge) team at Belleville West High School. At our December meeting, Mike told us about the team's work and the club members present voted to donate $100 to the Belleville West team to help with building materials and motors. Since the meeting, Mike has passed along these words of thanks and a wish list. If any club members have any spare materials or motors applicable to the project and would like to help the team out by donating them, please bring them to the January meeting.

Merry Christmas! Many thanks to all who offered to help my TARC team. Other donations, (parts, motors, etc.), I will pick up at the next meeting.

The first prototype is all Apogee components. Payload bay 66mm (BT80), booster 41mm (BT60) with a 29mm MMT. Hard, heavy (PVC?) transition, foam egg protector and NC, 1/16 balsa fins.
One flight so far on an Econoline F. Two fins broke on the way up. Too thin, too large and grain direction incorrect. Estimated altitude too low.
They will need more motors. I have an Aerotech 29/40-120 and a Cessaroni three grain case they can use. E or F impulse.
They would do better with a 56mm (BT70) payload bay and a 24mm (BT50) booster. It I can convince them of that they will need everything. Tubes, transitions, nose cones, motors.
Not very specific, but we still don't know what motors will be used. They are simulating everything in RockSim but still need actual test flights. And the design is not finalized.
They need to make most of the decisions themselves. I answer questions and advise. Like fin grain direction and weigh each component. They were ~300gm over RockSim's estimates.
Any scrap pieces you have laying around, if not in the final rocket, will be used to hone building skills or teach. ("Here's a box of junk. Build a rocket.")

Thanks for your help.

May you all have a merry Christmas and a happy New Year, (and no rain for a while) Mike Fischer

December high-power launch status

Following Tuesday's meeting and contact with the Ellsberry landowner, we have the following launch status to pass along:

  • Despite the promising weather forecast for this weekend, we will NOT have a launch this weekend (December 13/14). The field and dirt roads are still too muddy from previous rain for us to bring vehicles in without damaging the roads.
  • There is a small chance we could put a launch together for the following weekend (December 20/21), but only if there is no additional rain. Since the current weather forecast predicts rain on Monday, we expect that the field will continue to be inaccessible. We will check again with the landowner next week.
  • Beyond that, we are on a wait-and-see basis. It is fairly likely at this point that our next launch opportunity will not be until spring.

We apologize for the poor communication surrounding the December 6th date. We discussed this problem at length at the club meeting this week and are taking steps to improve communication both among the launch planners and with the club members. As Heino mentioned in his previous post, the forums have been removed from the website as they were counterproductive (in short, people were asking questions on the forums, but the people who could answer those questions were not notified that the questions were there). Going forward, our primary means of receiving questions and feedback from members will be through our Facebook page. If you need a more immediate answer (for instance, information about an upcoming launch), please email me directly at

Tuesday December 9, 2014 General Membership Meeting Announcement

SLRA is having our regular monthly meeting on Tuesday
evening, December 9th, at our  meeting location: Google Map Link

Bandana's Bbq Sunset Hills
11750 Gravois Road
Sunset Hills, Missouri, 63127

We are continuing to meet at  Bandana’s BBQ Sunset Hills. Even though Bandana’s Sunset Hills doesn’t have a minimum food purchase, we are encouraging members to purchase something to support the use of the room. We have the room from 6:30 to 9:00 and we’ll need to leave promptly since 9 pm is the closing time.

The room will be available at 6:30 PM and  the business meeting will start at about 7:00PM. We'll need to be out of the room by 9:00 PM (closing).

If you're a member of SLRA, the meeting minutes from the June meeting will be available here: Meeting Minutes Page, The meeting minutes will be the basis of our "old business" discussion.

We'll be discussing the SLRA launch schedule for December, status of future high power launches and the club direction for 2015.


The standard agenda for all meetings is as follows:

1. Treasury Status.

2. Recognition of Achievements

3. Recognition of Contributions

4. Members expenses.

5. Old Business - please review minutes for last month's meeting for topics

6. New Business

On line and paper membership forms with payments received by mail  to be processed by treasurer and president.

Please comment on this post or email me at if you have new business for the meeting.

Heino Pull
SLRA Secretary

Web Site Changes

To simplify the use of the web site, the forums have been removed. They were not used by current members on an active basis and it confused new individuals to the club since many posts went unanswered.

In the process of doing this change, the WordPress configuration crashed and couldn't be restored to an operational state. On Saturday, I restored the website to an earlier September state, so several posts have been lost from September to December. All other functionality is currently working. Sorry for the inconvenience.



There is no launch today! Saturday 12/6/2014

I have to apologize to the group, but one member did wind up going to Elsberry today.  I’ve been extremely busy at work and failed to put a definitive launch cancellation on the site.

This points to a serious problem in the club – there are a few members who are anxious to fly at Elsberry, and only a few members actively planning and discussing upcoming launches. I plan to raise this issue at our December meeting and we need to assess the future of the club for 2015 before we accept any more memberships or have elections.

I’m truly sorry for anyone who may have inadvertently went to Elsberry and I will have some announcements on my personal status in the club at the meeting.