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View Full Version : Estes LoadStar - what WERE they thinking?!?


BEC
03-26-2011, 12:13 AM
I picked up an RTF Estes LoadStar (http://www.estesrockets.com/rockets/rtf/002456-loadstartm) this afternoon with the intent of using it to do a little multiple altimeter testing at a launch tomorrow. I went to prep it and when I got it out of the box I found that the payload section is sealed! The nose cone and the transition are both glued on tight.

So we have a payloader-style rocket with a payloader-type name in which you cannot put a payload without doing violence to it first. What in heavens name were they thinking??? Hey John (JumpJet) - what's the scoop?

JumpJet
03-28-2011, 12:36 AM
Sorry, but I don't have an answer on why the payload section is sealed although I would guess 98% of the people that purchase that model wouldn't be putting a payload in it any way. I design rocket kits and parts that can be used in ready to fly rockets. I don't usually have anything to do with ready to fly models other then making sure they fly straight.


John Boren

BEC
03-28-2011, 01:47 AM
OK. I owe you and Mike Fritz an update on how the LED-based Electron Beam is doing, so maybe I'll ask Mike about that at the same time.

The other RTF payloader - the SkyTrax - does not have a sealed payload section.

I wound up using my Semroc Mini Hustler and Quest SuperBird for the multi-altimeter flights yesterday but only got two such flights in before we got rained out.

BEC
03-31-2011, 11:57 AM
This is an excerpt from Mike Fritz' reply to my query about this:
As for the Loadstar...you're correct...the name would imply a "payload" section, but at the time we were developing this product, the head of Estes did not want to provide the general public with a payload section and had us glue the upper parts together. We've talked about undoing this assembly, but I have a huge inventory stateside and it would be in 2012 before I can make that change.

He has gone on to offer me several alternatives to get the capability I was seeking including offering me one of the other Loadstar kits (the #1760 two-stager). Thanks, Mike!

Shreadvector
03-31-2011, 12:18 PM
This is an excerpt from Mike Fritz' reply to my query about this:


He has gone on to offer me several alternatives to get the capability I was seeking including offering me one of the other Loadstar kits (the #1760 two-stager). Thanks, Mike!

I'm glad that Estes has a new Head now. The previous Head is fading into history.

At least we did not have to send in NATO.:D

BPRescue
03-31-2011, 02:14 PM
I would be interested to see how your Loadstar flys… I had one; first flight on a C6-5 did the loop thing crashing to the ground. Don’t know why; and potentially could have been my fault though everything looked good when I set it up… I did notice after the crash that the tube where the payloader section inserts was torn, and is extremely thin. Certainly likely it tore after the crash but with how thin it was, for the heavy/large payload section I can see it possible it was already begingin to fail. Estes was great and replaced it with a Skytrax and Prospector even though I could not prove it was a problem with the rocket or motor, or my fault.

The Skytrax has proven bulletproof for me/my kids and withstands considerable abuse, so I use it when multiple kids/parties are involved. Payload section is smaller, but usable and clear.

dlazarus6660
04-24-2011, 01:51 PM
I looked in my new Estes 2011 catalog and found the 2422 Reflector shares the same nose cone as the Loadstar. I wonder if that nose cone is glued together?

JumpJet
04-24-2011, 02:03 PM
Since the Reflector is in fact a kit the only way those parts would be glued together is if the modeler wishes them to be. The instructions may tell you to glue the payload section parts together, "Can't Remember" but you can of course do what you wish.



John Boren

Chas Russell
04-24-2011, 02:21 PM
Since it is a Level 1 kit and not preassembled, the payload section has to be assembled. I have looked at the kit at the LHS, mainly to see the balsa parts.

Chas

BEC
04-24-2011, 09:53 PM
I would be interested to see how your Loadstar flys… I had one; first flight on a C6-5 did the loop thing crashing to the ground. Don’t know why; and potentially could have been my fault though everything looked good when I set it up… I did notice after the crash that the tube where the payloader section inserts was torn, and is extremely thin.

Well...here's an update.

Mike sent me both parts to put a functional payload section on the Loadstar RTF and a Loadstar 1760 kit. The parts he sent were a nose cone, transition, and a 6-inch-long piece of the payload section tubing (BT-56?) in black. I used these parts unmodified, which yields a payload section 1.75 inches longer than the sealed compartment the RTF rocket comes with. I was also able to carefully peel the logo sticker from the sealed section and put it on the new one, so it looks as if it's supposed to be that way.

It has had four flights - all on Saturday two weeks ago. Two were with B6-4s, two with C6-3s. All had some payload aboard, ranging from one AltimeterOne (0.25 ounce) on the first flight to five altimeters at once (AltimeterOne, PerfectFlite Alt 15K/WD, Adept ALTIM1, Adrel ALT-LED and Adrel ALT-USB, total weight 1.49 ounce) on the fourth. In between were two flights with the PerfectFlite, the Adept and the AltimeterOne (total 1.30 ounces).

All flight profiles were quite acceptable, though it tipped over a bit more into the breeze at the heavier weights as one would expect.

If it hadn't landed on pavement, breaking a fin, and popped two shroud lines (solid red Estes 'chute with the fuzzy melty shroud lines) on the fourth flight it would've flown once or twice more that day.

It has since been repaired and is ready to go again, but since then I've designed and built a BT-60 based original intended specifically for this testing so the Loadstar RTF is now in backup status for the intended mission.

Shreadvector
04-25-2011, 08:36 AM
Since you mentioned the fuzzy shroud lines: I've seen the new parachutes with the new shroud lines and the shroud lines are the highest quality 'button and carpet thread' I have ever seen included in a model rocket EVER (been launching since 1970).

They are not even remotely fuzzy.

BRAVO. :D

jeffyjeep
04-25-2011, 09:13 AM
I LOVED the old Loadstar and built several of them. I'm pretty sure they were mechanically the same as the Warp II, but had different decals and were available in bulk packs.

BEC
04-25-2011, 03:24 PM
Since you mentioned the fuzzy shroud lines: I've seen the new parachutes with the new shroud lines and the shroud lines are the highest quality 'button and carpet thread' I have ever seen included in a model rocket EVER (been launching since 1970).

They are not even remotely fuzzy.

BRAVO. :D

Absolutely agreed! Which is why I started this thread (http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showthread.php?t=8843) a little over a month ago. That thread did drift to a discussion about shock cords, though....