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Old 04-16-2009, 07:48 PM
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Initiator001 Initiator001 is offline
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Default Products which were announced but never released

Mike,

Thank you for responding to my question about the Cylon Raider and the Cygnus Probe.


I know that at least one of those Cygnus Probe kits escaped the warehouse.

About 20 years ago, I was speaking to an HPR flyer over the phone while I was working at AeroTech. I don't know how the conversation turned to this subject but we started talking about Estes kits. I mentioned how it would be nice to have one of the Cygnus Probe kits in my collection. He told me he had one. I was skeptical and told him so. He told me that he had visited Penrose and the Estes facility at one point and had managed to get one of these kits.

I still didn't believe him and our conversation moved on to other topics.

It would appear I owe him an apology.

I wonder if I have a current phone number for him...

Bob
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Old 04-16-2009, 09:30 PM
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Initiator001 Initiator001 is offline
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Mike,

Another 'lost' product question for you.

The product is the Laser Launch Controller.

I was sent one to review/test around ten years ago. I took it up to one of the Los Angeles NAR Section launches and tried/demo'd it.

The voice countdown feature was it's what made it 'special'.

It worked fine but didn't seem to generate much interest. The most asked question was, "Who provided the voice?"

Can you explain/describe the history of the item?

Thank you.

Bob Sanford
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  #3  
Old 04-16-2009, 11:04 PM
MDorffler MDorffler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Initiator001
Mike,

Another 'lost' product question for you.

The product is the Laser Launch Controller.

I was sent one to review/test around ten years ago. I took it up to one of the Los Angeles NAR Section launches and tried/demo'd it.

The voice countdown feature was it's what made it 'special'.

It worked fine but didn't seem to generate much interest. The most asked question was, "Who provided the voice?"

Can you explain/describe the history of the item?

Thank you.

Bob Sanford


Bob - I didn't know we had sent any of those out for review. I guess I better go check my desk in the morning to see how many of my personal items have been sent out without my knowledge. That controller was too expensive to produce compared with the standard E-Beam. The supplier just couldn't get the cost down and the sound didn't really add any safety or value so it was scrapped. The cost would have driven up the reatil for the starter outfits which is not a good idea. I don't know who recorded the voice - sorry, The whole project was handled by the marketing department who didn't consult with anyone in R&D at all. I saw it on the shop bench one day and asked what the heck it was. That was my total involement.
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Old 04-17-2009, 01:03 AM
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Initiator001 Initiator001 is offline
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Originally Posted by MDorffler
I guess I better go check my desk in the morning to see how many of my personal items have been sent out without my knowledge.



Mike,

Uhh, about your desk.

You may find you have a 'new' desk when you arrive at work on Friday.

If you're ever in San Diego, let me know and you can stop by and visit your 'old' desk.

Seriously, thanks, again, for taking the time to answer my questions.

Bob Sanford
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Old 04-17-2009, 02:09 AM
rkt2k1 rkt2k1 is offline
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Question Salvage 1

Mike,

Thanks for joining the forum and providing your insight into the history of Estes. I've enjoyed reading the questions posed to you and your responses.

Speaking of products that were never released, I remember finding photos on the Internet of a Estes R&D design of the Salvage 1 rocket from the short-lived TV series.

What is the story behind that design?

Thanks,

... Bill
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Old 04-17-2009, 09:00 AM
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Royatl Royatl is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rkt2k1
Mike,

Thanks for joining the forum and providing your insight into the history of Estes. I've enjoyed reading the questions posed to you and your responses.

Speaking of products that were never released, I remember finding photos on the Internet of a Estes R&D design of the Salvage 1 rocket from the short-lived TV series.

What is the story behind that design?

Thanks,

... Bill


This has been covered in the original thread, "Ask Mike" messages #88 , #89 , and #106 .
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Old 04-16-2009, 11:07 PM
MDorffler MDorffler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Initiator001
Mike,

Thank you for responding to my question about the Cylon Raider and the Cygnus Probe.


I know that at least one of those Cygnus Probe kits escaped the warehouse.

About 20 years ago, I was speaking to an HPR flyer over the phone while I was working at AeroTech. I don't know how the conversation turned to this subject but we started talking about Estes kits. I mentioned how it would be nice to have one of the Cygnus Probe kits in my collection. He told me he had one. I was skeptical and told him so. He told me that he had visited Penrose and the Estes facility at one point and had managed to get one of these kits.

I still didn't believe him and our conversation moved on to other topics.

It would appear I owe him an apology.

I wonder if I have a current phone number for him...

Bob


This is interesting that at least one of the kits got out. It should not have happened. We had a contract with Disney that they were all to be destroyed.
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Old 04-29-2009, 11:00 AM
lurker01 lurker01 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MDorffler
This is interesting that at least one of the kits got out. It should not have happened. We had a contract with Disney that they were all to be destroyed.



Mike,

You would be SURPRISED what made it from the Estes Dumpsters and the Old Estes Home / Estes Storage to private collectors ... you would be surprised.

Hey, Bill Simon had said that last year he finally threw away boxes of Estes records detailing the number of Estes kits manufactured though the years.

You mentioned the Astrocam and that 50,000 units a year were produced ... wow!

How about those 1960's kits? Kits that had to have hand turned balsa nose cones and hand wound body tubes like the BT-30.

Any idea what the production number of a pre-damon kit was? How about the Cineroc? How many of those were produced annually?

Thanks in advance,

Bob
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  #9  
Old 05-01-2009, 01:05 PM
MDorffler MDorffler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lurker01
Mike,

You would be SURPRISED what made it from the Estes Dumpsters and the Old Estes Home / Estes Storage to private collectors ... you would be surprised.

Hey, Bill Simon had said that last year he finally threw away boxes of Estes records detailing the number of Estes kits manufactured though the years.

You mentioned the Astrocam and that 50,000 units a year were produced ... wow!

How about those 1960's kits? Kits that had to have hand turned balsa nose cones and hand wound body tubes like the BT-30.

Any idea what the production number of a pre-damon kit was? How about the Cineroc? How many of those were produced annually?

Thanks in advance,

Bob


Bob - no, I'm not surprised at all. And obviously you have intimate knowledge of where many of these items were kept or stored and were taken from. One thing I would like to pass on to the guys who have 'private collections' of Estes rockets, prototypes, photos, films, etc., is that in all likelyhood your collection contains one or more of these pilfered items. No employee has ever had the right or been given permission to take home items such as the original photo models, or kit files, or our large collection of scale data. Yet today the original models such as the Mars Lander or Spaceman, or the original Interceptor which were kept in the photo studio are now all gone. Most of the printing plates that printed the original instructions are all gone, and our massive set of scale files have been decimated. All of which has upset me greatly for some time.
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  #10  
Old 05-01-2009, 01:40 PM
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GregGleason GregGleason is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MDorffler
... have been decimated. All of which has upset me greatly for some time.


Oh Mike. This is terrible news. I had assumed that most of the Estes treasure was locked away safely somewhere. To hear that so much work and history was cast to the wind is very sad. Sigh.

Greg
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