My Tripoli Certification Flights


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TRIPOLI # 11058

Level 2


My Endeavour rocket I built for my Tripoli level 1 and level 2 certification.  It is a Public Missiles Ltd Kit with pre-slotted 4" diameter quantum tube body and G-10 fiberglass fins.  It stands 71" tall and has a CPR-3000 kit installed for dual recovery with an altimeter.  I put in a Missile Works RRC2 altimeter which I had to modify slightly to work.  I epoxied terminal blocks on the back and soldered wires to them from the ejection outputs because as installed, the stock terminal blocks were not easily accessible.  It has a 15" drogue chute and 54" main, both fabric Public Missile stock chutes.  It weighs in at 2.95 Kg ( 6.5 lbs or 104 oz) without the motor.

The plan was to go for both level 1 and level 2 Tripoli certifications at the Blackhole Rocketry club (out of Spokane Washington) launch at the Telford site on November 18, 2006.  As it turned out, I made a successful flight for the level 1 but ran out of time for the level 2 attempt.  I wasn't quite all set up and it took me too long to get ready for the flight.  The next launch will be in Spring of 2007 and I will attempt the level 2 certification then.

Update October, 2007: I successfully completed my level II at FITS, a Tripoli & NAR three day launch over Memorial Day weekend.  See more pictures and notes at the bottom of this page.


Blackhole Amateur Rocketry Club (BAR) Launch

at Telford site west of Spokane November 18, 2006.

Only three people were at this launch, the Prefect, Harold Kellams, myself (Gary Jacobs) and Dave.  We each made one flight.

David flew his minimum diameter rocket which quickly went out of sight and entered a different dimension. It was unfortunately lost.

My Cert one flight went to 707 feet (nice and easy low flight) on a Rouse-Tech Monster Motors 38/240 motor with an Aerotech reload.  The flight was successful.  No pictures were taken (too busy prepping the rocket).

Harold launched his carbon fiber rocket which attained well over 5000 feet.  He was able to recover his carbon rocket using his radio direction finder.

Harold raises his carbon fiber small diameter rocket
 into position while David looks on.

Harold does a last check before launching his
 carbon fiber rocket.


Click here for a brief (the rocket was only visible briefly) video of Harold's flight.  (1.2 megs mpg)


Dry Falls South of Grand Coulee Dam on the way
 to the Telford launch site from Yakima

"Down stream" from Dry Falls



Heading out to the launch pad with
Black Rock Rocketry Cub prefect, Harold Kellams.

My first launch was unsuccessful so Harold suggested it was because we didn't get a picture of me with the rocket before the flight.  It must have worked because the second try was successful.


The roar of a high power rocket taking off is exhilarating!  It looks pretty neat, too.  The picture isn't real good because it is actually just a frame from the video I shot of it.  You just plain would have to be lucky to get a still shot at this point.

And there it is, the end of the successful level II launch with the parachute deployed and a nice soft landing in the grass.


This is me sitting at my table repairing my rocket after the first failed attempt.  My first attempt failed because the main chute deployed prematurely and ripped the shock cord right out of the piston.  The nose cone separated and landed by its chute a long ways away, and the main rocket came down with just the drogue and so made a pretty hard landing.  Fortunately, it landed in soft dirt so the landing didn't hurt it any.  My prefect was nice enough to keep an eye on the main chute with the nose cone and actually retrieved it for me while I recovered the main body in a different location.  The rocket had an altimeter that was set up for dual deployment with a drogue at apogee and the main set to deploy lower to the ground.  The reason it separated early was because the joint was too loose.  For the second attempt, to make sure there was no problem, I reset the altimeter for single deployment of the main chute at apogee with a backup charge a couple seconds later at apogee.  I taped the main section together so it couldn't separate.

It was fortunate that I had brought along lots of repair stuff including the propane powered soldering pen I had just bought before the trip.  I used it to rewire the altimeter to put both charges on the main chute between the nosecone and the body.  I also had to do a little repair work on one fin.


Click here for the video clip of my launch.  4 Mbytes


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