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April 2009 Construction Report
Mad Max 8 DD Construction

This is the month of the big launch. If You Only Live Twice does not fly this month, for whatever reason, it will have to wait until Red Glare VII in the Fall. April is the month of preparations, verifications, inspections, and final countdown. In addition to the level 3 attempt, the rest of the rocket fleet is also being prepared for flight at Red Glare.

The TAP members that I have been consulting with were put on notice for the pending level 3 attempt. A Loki M1882 rocket engine reload was ordered. Special Fat Boy igniters were ordered from Quickburst to ensure fast rocket engine ignition. A transportation cradle was purchased and assembled. The main parachute was fluffed, inspected, and carefully packed into its parachute bag. The various shockcords, with their mounts and connections were inspected, installed, check and rechecked. Various ejection charges were measured and prepared.

Continuity was verified on all electronic connections. Brand new batteries were installed for the electronics. All final connections were made and verified. The electronics bay was sealed.

Finally, with less then a week to final countdown, the mobile rocket shack was loaded. It quickly became apparent that some type of racks will have to be built in the trailer as floor space quickly ran out. This will have to wait until over the summer.

There was nothing more to do. There was nothing left to build, nothing left to glue, paint, or epoxy, nothing left to check or verify. You Only Live Twice construction finished ahead of schedule and there was nothing left to do except to fly it, and worry, and worry some more. As each day drew closer to launch day, the butterflies in the stomach started to accumulate and it soon became obvious that only a successful flight would chase the butterflies away.

Launch Day finally arrived and we left for Red Glare VI at Higgs Farm to fly this creation of mine. It was not a day too soon!

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Last Updated: 21 April, 2009 5:58 PM April 21, 2009 5:58 PM
By Peter E. Abresch Jr.
Ben checking out the main parachute
Ben checking out the main parachute
Loaded Trailer
You Only Live Twice loaded into trailer for transport to Red Glare VI
Listen to the original You Only Live Twice teaser