I made my customary solo journey over to Marylandís Eastern
Shore to get a rocket in the air. The beach traffic was dying
down this time of the year and I managed my way over the bay
bridge to meet fellow rocketeers for breakfast at Ramís Head
without much delay. I enjoy Eggs Benedict and coffee before
picking up the away cell trailer at Higgs Farm in order to bring
it to the sod farm for some scheduled big flights.
We arrived at the sod farm and made quick work setting up the
away cell trailer and the rest of the field. The field was wet
from recent rains but the diesel irrigation pump continued to
clang noisily in the background all day. The sky was blue with
puffy clouds traversing south to north with light variable
I helped others and filmed some flights. Shaken, Not
Stirred did not get a chance to fly Saturday.
However, I returned early Sunday morning with Shaken, Not
Stirred in hand. I let others fly before me but I
was not happy with the wind as it was taking many rockets into
the ever hungry soy beans. Finally in the afternoon, the wind
shifted slightly from the northwest allowing me to install Shaken,
Not Stirred onto the pad with a H100-IMAX for
propulsion. This would be Shaken, Not Stirredís
first flight on a H100-IMAX.
At the conclusion of the countdown, Shaken, Not Stirred
slowly lifted off into the overcast sky while arcing into the
breeze and over the flight line. At 1,240 feet the drogue was
deployed and Shaken, Not Stirred danced while the
breeze returned her to our side of the flight line. Shaken,
Not Stirred landed on a patch of dead sod close by.
Upon retrieval, it was discovered that Shaken, Not
Stirred incurred damage forward of the fin canister.
This was due to a weaken condition in that spot during flight
#71 which failed to deployed the main. Eight landings later must
have been too much as the fin can and sustainer are now in two
pieces. Luckily it can be repaired.
Once again I assisted others before it was time to pack up the
away cell trailer and return it to Higgs Farm. The field was
packed and equipment stowed. The journey home saw much traffic
from returning beach goers that added an extra 40 minutes to my
all the weekendís flights here. Until the next launch . .