Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Houston, we have a problem...

"Flight, EECOM..."

"Yeah, Go EECOM."

"Flight, I am reading a quadruple failure on the O2 tank iso-valves."

"EECOM, there are no iso-valves on model rockets, not to mention O2 tanks."

"Flight, that's affirm, was just engaging in a little Mission-Control tom-foolery.
SERIOUSLY, though, Flight, it would appear we need to scrub the Friday May 2 1845 launch..."

"EECOM, would you mind telling me WHY we need to scrub?"

"Flight, it's because there will be no one at the pad site to execute the launch."

"EECOM, if we scrub, that means we'll have to wait until NEXT WEEK for another possible launch. Do you REALIZE what you are telling me here?"

[EECOM remove his headset and turns rearward, and fixes his gaze on the eyes of the flight commander over the console.]

"Gene, from my chair here, this is the last option..."

The Flight Commander fixes his steely-eyed-missile-man gaze back to the nervous EECOM. He furrows his brow.

"That's the deal? We are talking the whole smash?"

"That's the deal. The whole smash."

"CAPCOM, let's get them to close the iso-valve to O2 tanks numbers 2 and 3. Oh, No! Now I am caught up in the tom-foolery. We don't even HAVE a CAPCOM..."

The Flight Commander fixes his steely gaze toward the camera and addresses the audience. "Folks, all tom-foolery aside, the z-rocketman model rocket launch scheduled for this Friday, May 2 at M Walter, is scrubbed. Hope to see you at another launch soon."

- posted by z-man's old man...

Friday, April 25, 2008


... we are go for pyro-arm

Flight: Roger that, Booster, go on pyro-arm.

Pad Leader: Houston, Launch Control.

Flight: Go, Launch Control.

Launch Control: Houston, we are go on Control Infrastructure refit and final checkout. We are go for countdown continuance.

Flight: Launch Control, that's affirm we understand infrastructure refit and checkout are good. Continue countdown.

Launch is a go for 1845 hours EDT.

Saturday, April 19, 2008


We had a great launch last night.

It was great to have most of the O family join us for the launch. Mrs O won the riddle contest. Congratulations, Mrs O!

The weather was great. Clear and no wind. My latest mods to my home designed and built rocket were successful. The rocket flew almost 2000 feet, I think. My Pop says it was about 1800. It was neat because when the rocket entered the coast phase at about 1500 feet, it did a nice, single corkscrew up to apogee.

I need to change one more thing, though. I need to put a streamer recovery system in the rocket, because the rocket falls nose down as fast as a missile, and the nosecone buries itself halfway into the ground. That kind of descent is a little bit dangerous, so I'll make it safer.

We held our post launch debriefing at the Dairy Queen. DQ is a great place to discuss flight dynamics. We'll have to do that again.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008


z-rocketman's Pop Here:

I have been asked to announce that we have standing plans to launch on Friday evenings, weather permitting, starting at 6:45. Launch location is the open area behind M. Walter School. We'll keep you posted on launch status here on this blog, or you can call me (z-rocketman's Pop) for the very latest.

We do not need much of an excuse to hold our post-launch debriefs at Dairy Queen (DQ), so come join us for a launch sometime.

You can always check this site for the latest meteorological conditions. We like to launch in wind less than 10mph, but we have been known to "push the envelope".

We also sometimes launch on Saturday mornings, and maybe even the odd Wednesday night. I'll try to post those ahead of time, too. If we scrub, I'll post as well.