First day of a regional rocket contest today in Delton, Michigan. Over the winter, I had worked out how to pack a 36" diameter aluminized mylar parachute into a tube less than 3/4" in diameter. Mid afternoon thermals were beginning to pick up and it was time to launch. Up goes the rocket on a B6-4 engine (A moderate sized model rocket engine) and the silver parachute opens perfectly. It catches a thermal and drifts upward for seven plus minutes until the timer looses sight of it. No problem. We will launch a second model that we can easily get back and we will get time credit for both flights. Peter happened to have a Big Bertha ready for a non-contest fun flight. The Big Bertha is a classic model famed for being reliable and easy to recover. Except not this time.
Peter cleverly had me check the model and parachute so he could blame me if something went wrong. A haiku:
The rocket flew up Ejection, no parachute Painful core sample
Jeff, a member of our arch rival team, The Dark Side, laughed hysterically.
But now a second haiku:
Car arrives with what Silver parachute rocket We laugh now at Jeff
Yep. Friendly neighbors driving down the road saw our first rocket land a couple of miles down the road and returned it. We had a good day