Thursday, October 2, 2014

Two More Pieces of Tape - Painting the Big Bertha

The wind this weekend is not looking good. Predicted to be at 17 mph, when the max wind speed at which you should launch is 20 mph. I have an "October Sky" launch scheduled for Saturday, in honor of the anniversary of the launch of Sputnik 1. Why couldn't they have launched Sputnik at the end of September? The winds last weekend were around 1-2 mph! Practically nothing!

In preparation, I'm trying to finish my Estes Big Bertha. I've abandoned the previous paint scheme idea -

- for something closer to a compromise between the old-school black-and-yellow look and the new all-black look suggested by Estes.

This was my first idea:

Kind of a yellowjacket look. I liked it.

But it has seven gold ring stripes, of differing widths! That's not only a lot of work, it's also easy to mess up (you have to get your masking tape perfectly perpendicular to the body of the rocket or the ends won't match up), and each ring requires about a day of drying time if you care what the paint looks like. I was rushing, and I already need to touch up the black body when I'm finished.

So, I've decided to cut down on the number of stripes, and I can finish this today, if I decide how I want it to look. I literally need to place only two more pieces of tape, and I can finish this rocket. I just don't know which look I prefer.

There's the one with a narrow yellow central stripe:

And the one with a wider central black stripe:

Which look do you prefer?

Now, if only the weather will cooperate, I can see how this thing will fly.

Part 3 of my Big Bertha build coming soon.

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