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  #11  
Old 02-24-2015, 05:09 PM
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oh if you could trace those off and scan 100% that would be very cool!!! Carl did that for the smaller launcher.
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  #12  
Old 02-24-2015, 07:30 PM
stefanj stefanj is offline
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Thanks for the comparison photos!

I saw the LIA-77 exactly twice in my life, and not up close.

Shortly after getting into rockets I saw a family launching some at a local beach. They were really beautifully finished; I thought that they were somehow made of gleaming plastic. I realize now that they just had great paint jobs, much better than the awful trash finishes my friends and I turned out.

I recall they had a Estes Space Man and a few Centuri models. They were using a Centuri launch tripod and controller.

My elementary school's "Science Room" had a LIA-77 up on top of a filing cabinet. It was the only evidence that some rocketry-related things had gone on at the school before I got there. I never got to look it over.

I recall getting a used Centuri starter set back in the day, but it had one of the little wooden pads.

I don't recall if the local Centuri dealer carried starter sets. They had plenty of kits, and at least one model of launch controller. Well, in any case, by the time I had the money to buy pads Centuri had moved on to the plastic units.
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  #13  
Old 02-24-2015, 07:38 PM
stefanj stefanj is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earl
And why they dropped all the nice MiniMax rockets when they officially introduced the Enerjet line has always been a mystery to me. Cost-cutting move by the Damon suits would be my best guess. Got rid of all the heavy walled tubing kits and went 'standard' Centuri tubing for the Enejet stuff (save for the heavy-walled 1340).


Earl


It is surprising that the LIA-100 went away. The smaller tripod was probably better for high power than the plastic units Centuri started selling for use with smaller models in the early 70s, but you'd think that a company (Enerjet) trying to project a more professional image would offer a sturdier pad.

At NARCON last weekend Lee Piester said something to the effect that those tubes were some of the best he'd ever seen. From the limited samples I've seen, I agree. The cone and fins that came with my 1968 vintage Aero Dart were also top-notch.

Yeah, cost-cutting and eliminating speciality products probably did in the "MiniMax" rockets. Seeing those disappear between 1971 (my first Centuri catalog) and 1972 was a real let-down. Being able to have those models was a driving force of my rocketry efforts around ten years ago; I managed to clone nearly all of them before Semroc made it easy!
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  #14  
Old 02-24-2015, 09:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stefanj
It is surprising that the LIA-100 went away. The smaller tripod was probably better for high power than the plastic units Centuri started selling for use with smaller models in the early 70s, but you'd think that a company (Enerjet) trying to project a more professional image would offer a sturdier pad.

At NARCON last weekend Lee Piester said something to the effect that those tubes were some of the best he'd ever seen. From the limited samples I've seen, I agree. The cone and fins that came with my 1968 vintage Aero Dart were also top-notch.

Yeah, cost-cutting and eliminating speciality products probably did in the "MiniMax" rockets. Seeing those disappear between 1971 (my first Centuri catalog) and 1972 was a real let-down. Being able to have those models was a driving force of my rocketry efforts around ten years ago; I managed to clone nearly all of them before Semroc made it easy!


Ahh, the 1971 Centuri catalog! That was my first catalog ever. Got it in late 1970 and just about memorized every page. Still have that copy, but boy is it worn! Here a couple years ago I was able to get a mint copy of that same catalog and geez was I reminded of just how faded and worn my original was!

That was a great catalog with all their regular kits, but also was the last that had the minimax kits and motors and the introduction of the Enerjet engines.

I can understand the end of production of the minimax motors once the Enerjets were released (and a storm induced fire at the minimax plant actually put an end to their production, as I understand), but dropping the minimax kits themselves, especially when they had some great new Enerjet motors to fly them with was still a disappointment.

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  #15  
Old 02-24-2015, 10:53 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Earl
I've got some Semroc MiniMax clones in the build que and one actual MiniMax kit that I want to build as well (I've been able to snag two Jaguars the past year). I've got other actual MiniMax kits, but the Jaguar is the only one so far that I have multiples of.

And about a year ago I was able to get the Centuri LIA-100 heavy duty wooden launcher from Penn Valley Hobby Center off ebay. It was the 'recommended' launcher for the MiniMax kits, and I like/try to do all things 'vintage' if I can.

Only problem was, the launcher I got from Penn Valley included the blast deflector from the smaller LIA-77 tripod launcher. It would be functional as a blast defector, but was not the one that was designed to go with the LIA-100. Looks almost the same.....the LIA-77 deflector is just smaller.

Now, maybe in the later runs of the larger LIA-100 launcher, Centuri may have changed over to the smaller LIA-77 deflector to save money. But I'm trying to find someone who may have the larger deflector for sale OR who can at least post photos or measurements of it.

As can be seen from the attached instruction scan from the LIA-100, it DID use a different deflector than the smaller LIA-77. The part number for the ignitor/deflector for the larger LIA-100 is "ID-100".

Any body got one they can lay their hands on?


Earl


In a photo dated 1978 I just noticed that I had two similar pads but I don't remember using either one of these. I always used my two FSI all metal pads for 3/16 and 1/4" lug rockets by this time instead since I was flying FSI and larger Estes rockets with conversion kits in high school.

Are these the LIA-77 and LIA-100 pads? One looks a little larger in the photo than the other. I kept all my blast deflectors in a rangebox so those are not in the picture.

I still have the rangebox in the attic but it hasn't been opened for years I may still have the deflectors but would need to check.

One pad may possibly just be stacked on top the other pad in the photo I really can't tell these could just be the same pad just two of them.

.
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  #16  
Old 02-24-2015, 11:08 PM
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A Fish Named Wallyum A Fish Named Wallyum is offline
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That Dart on the far right looks like mine after the E9-8 CATO in Muncie a few years back.
LOVE this pic, btw. The vintage shots are great. Wish I had more than a crappy screen capture of mine.
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  #17  
Old 02-25-2015, 12:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snaquin
In a photo dated 1978 I just noticed that I had two similar pads but I don't remember using either one of these. I always used my two FSI all metal pads for 3/16 and 1/4" lug rockets by this time instead since I was flying FSI and larger Estes rockets with conversion kits in high school.

Are these the LIA-77 and LIA-100 pads? One looks a little larger in the photo than the other. I kept all my blast deflectors in a rangebox so those are not in the picture.

I still have the rangebox in the attic but it hasn't been opened for years I may still have the deflectors but would need to check.

One pad may possibly just be stacked on top the other pad in the photo I really can't tell these could just be the same pad just two of them.

.


Steve-

Thanks for the photo. They are definitely two Centuri pads, but it is hard to tell exactly what size they are. Like you say, could be two LIA-77s.

Don't go through any heroics, but if you do manage to reach the range box and can check, that would verify it for sure.

I still have my all-metal FSI pad I got back in the late 80s when I was first getting into high power, but we later built some larger custom stainless pads for 3/8 and half inch rods, so the FSI pad went unused after that. It was a sturdy one also. I have recently picked up a few old FSI kits (including a couple of the Black Brants), so I will need to dig that FSI pad out when I finally get around to building and flying one of those. I was always impressed by that Black Brant liftoff photo in the old FSI catalogs that I first got back in the latter 70s.

Earl
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  #18  
Old 02-25-2015, 12:22 AM
stefanj stefanj is offline
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I got many years of service out of the smaller of the two FSI metal pads. I lost it before I moved west; I think I left it on the field of the last LIARS launch I attended.

* * *
Quote:
Ahh, the 1971 Centuri catalog! That was my first catalog ever. Got it in late 1970 and just about memorized every page. Still have that copy, but boy is it worn! Here a couple years ago I was able to get a mint copy of that same catalog and geez was I reminded of just how faded and worn my original was!

I still have my 1971 "retail" catalog; it was a terrible, terrible mess with a missing cover and maybe 4 pages at either end.

I still had Lee Piester sign it!

I also picked up another version of the '71 catalog. It has the Enerjet order blank, and there are a few other differences. I remember my first 1971 catalog had a testimonial page, including one from Ricky Piester (something to the effect of "eating, drinking, and sleeping rockets"). The testimonials are entirely missing from the almost-mint catalog.
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  #19  
Old 02-25-2015, 09:16 AM
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kurtschachner kurtschachner is offline
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"I like rockets. I 'eat, sleep, and drink rockets', my mom says. But then she says the same thing about my dad."

Quote:
Originally Posted by stefanj
I also picked up another version of the '71 catalog. It has the Enerjet order blank, and there are a few other differences. I remember my first 1971 catalog had a testimonial page, including one from Ricky Piester (something to the effect of "eating, drinking, and sleeping rockets"). The testimonials are entirely missing from the almost-mint catalog.

Last edited by kurtschachner : 02-25-2015 at 09:59 AM.
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  #20  
Old 02-25-2015, 09:43 AM
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Here's what I got by scaling dimensions from the photos posted by Earl and Carl...by my ciphering the LIA-100 is about 1.105 times larger than the LIA-77. If somebody can supply me real dimensions, I can fine tune the cad models. I scaled the deflector by the same amount...

This sorta looks like snaquin's photo size-wise

edit: corrected name of photo poster
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