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  #21  
Old 07-27-2017, 09:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ECayemberg
Wow, never knew the round tip, hollow cone would've/could've come with a 1225 Alpha! Huh....

Bernard, I think what you're doing is awesome; can't wait to see the results! I did a similar project a few years back. Though I don't have a Alpha III coned Alpha I....doh! Alpha Collection Link

I have since added a 1" longer tubed, PNC-60K coned Super Alpha...properly scaled up version of the 1225 Alpha.

-Eric-


Neither did I - until SEL posted his example in this thread - and that after I saw that reference to red, blue or white nose cones in the 1989-1992 Estes catalogs as posted on the Estes site.

I remember seeing seeing your project - in fact I kind of wondered if I was duplicating some of what you've already done.

Right now I'm focusing only on the original Alpha ("Alpha I") and my intent is to lay out the evolution of its configuration from Bill Simon's original, which first appeared in the 1967 catalog, up through the currently-sold configuration.

I was reading old MRNs on YORS earlier today and saw a mention of the Alpha as part of a "more complete" beginner's outfit in the December 1965 MRN....so it appears to have been available for a good year before it popped up in the catalog. I'm hoping that the oldest instruction sheet I have (which was from my first Alpha, circa 1968 or so) represents the initial version.

The last configuration change I'm trying to nail down the timing for is the installation of the motor mount with the motor tube sticking out 3/8 of an inch as current versions show. It appears to have happened somewhere around 2011 but I don't have an example of where that change actually occurred.
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  #22  
Old 07-28-2017, 11:47 AM
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Polaris1324 Polaris1324 is offline
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I was curious if there was another rocket produced during the 89-92 time frame that could have had a blue/red nose cone that Estes could have used in the Alpha kit and found this:

http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/nostalgia/89est08.html

The Revolutionary Series appears to use the Alpha III fin can and a nose cone that could be a blue or red Alpha cone.

I did a few quick searches and the in the box image is all I could find which is hard to see.
I couldn't find any other data on these either.

Anyone have one of these or know about the cone that was used?
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  #23  
Old 07-28-2017, 02:10 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Polaris1324
I was curious if there was another rocket produced during the 89-92 time frame that could have had a blue/red nose cone that Estes could have used in the Alpha kit and found this:

http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/nostalgia/89est08.html

The Revolutionary Series appears to use the Alpha III fin can and a nose cone that could be a blue or red Alpha cone.

I did a few quick searches and the in the box image is all I could find which is hard to see.
I couldn't find any other data on these either.

Anyone have one of these or know about the cone that was used?


Could be wrong, but I seem to remember those cones being longer than the Alpha III's.
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  #24  
Old 07-28-2017, 02:33 PM
Rob Campbell Rob Campbell is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEL
Could be wrong, but I seem to remember those cones being longer than the Alpha III's.


I think you're right. The Alpha III's plastic nose cone was more blunt than the original Alpha's balsa nose cone and the current Alpha plastic nose cone is a very close match to the balsa cone.
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  #25  
Old 07-28-2017, 03:04 PM
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That looks like the 50YP cone that has been on LOTS of models including some Alpha-ish variations (the recent RTF Athena and HiJinks to name two). It's also used on the Make-It Take-It which is exactly what that "Patriot" looks like - blue nose cone, red fin can.
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  #26  
Old 08-04-2017, 01:30 AM
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Eric,

In your Alpha family build, do you recall if your red/black livery model has a plastic or balsa nose cone? Based on the stuff I've been running down, the red/black markings span the transition from the BNC-50K to the PNC-50KA (the "fatter" of the blow-molded nose cones which is very close to the original balsa one).

It's less clear from what I know now whether there was ever a black/red version with the current shape of the blow-molded nose cone. It kind of depends on what the white nose cone was in the kits during that 1989-1992 period when the catalog said you could have red, white or blue (and the instruction sheet was 82925G).
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  #27  
Old 08-04-2017, 01:31 AM
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A question to the assembled Alpha-geek brain trust: what's the correct way to refer to the current shape blow-molded nose cone that's in the Alpha, Generic E2X and I'm sure other kits. PNC-50-what?

I'm now in touch with a local collector who specializes in Alpha and Alpha variants....he's not been able to come up with an actual Alpha with a blue nose cone (not the HiJinks/Athena-like "Revolutionary Series"), either. I really does make me wonder if they ever really existed or if it was just catalog copy that suggested there might be.
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  #28  
Old 08-07-2017, 07:41 AM
ECayemberg ECayemberg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BEC
Eric,

In your Alpha family build, do you recall if your red/black livery model has a plastic or balsa nose cone? Based on the stuff I've been running down, the red/black markings span the transition from the BNC-50K to the PNC-50KA (the "fatter" of the blow-molded nose cones which is very close to the original balsa one).

It's less clear from what I know now whether there was ever a black/red version with the current shape of the blow-molded nose cone. It kind of depends on what the white nose cone was in the kits during that 1989-1992 period when the catalog said you could have red, white or blue (and the instruction sheet was 82925G).


Hi Bernard,

Both! My notes indicate that the BNC-50K's were supplied until 1982. 1983 was the first year for the PNC-50KA (fatter ogive) cone. The Red/Black with Decals livery ran from 1982-1990 in catalog years.

The Blue/Red scheme with decals ran from 1991-1997; I believe it was only supplied with the PNC-50KA (same p/n, slimmer ogive) version as you suggest. The same scheme continued in 1998, with a switch from waterslides to stickers.

I definitely have to go back and check out the instructions from the time...until this thread I had never seen or heard of any other cone in the kits. Mind blown!
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  #29  
Old 08-07-2017, 07:46 AM
ECayemberg ECayemberg is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BEC
A question to the assembled Alpha-geek brain trust: what's the correct way to refer to the current shape blow-molded nose cone that's in the Alpha, Generic E2X and I'm sure other kits. PNC-50-what?

I'm now in touch with a local collector who specializes in Alpha and Alpha variants....he's not been able to come up with an actual Alpha with a blue nose cone (not the HiJinks/Athena-like "Revolutionary Series"), either. I really does make me wonder if they ever really existed or if it was just catalog copy that suggested there might be.


Believe it to be a PNC-50KA.

Somewhere around that 1990 timeframe, Estes changed that mold from the fatter ogive like the BNC-50K to the slimmer current mold, however left the part number unchanged. Two differently shaped NC-50 cones with the same part number...doh!

Edit: check out this post. Lovely comparison by Quasar! The two versions of the PNC-50KA cone on the right. Pre ~1990 in the middle, Post ~1990 on the right.
Cone Comparison
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  #30  
Old 08-07-2017, 01:22 PM
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I'd been meaning to take a picture like that myself (the three nose cone comparison). Maybe I don't need to now. I notice he says the fatter blow-molded cone came from an Alpha II kit (and they do appear there first, based on what I've come across) but they also are in "regular" Alphas as you know. His suggestion that he saw one in an X-Ray kit makes me wonder what other models that would have used a BNC-50K might have got the plastic version in the 1982-1990 time frame....sheesh, another bunny trail.....

Another thing I've noticed in this recent gathering up of sample Alphas of different vintages is that the Chinese-made version of the current nose cone has less molding flash and smoother seams between the mold halves. Not sure I want to say it out loud like that but the samples show it pretty clearly. Maybe I need to shoot that picture. The last of the "made in USA" Beta Series Alphas with the narrower blow-molded nose cone have pretty rough ones.

I agree that the transition from the fatter to slimmer blow-molded cone coincides with the four-year span that had the catalog description mention "red, white or blue" nose cones. Which leads me to wonder which version of the blow molded cone one got if they got one with a white nose cone in that time frame (1989-1992 catalog time frame).

tbzep earlier in the thread speculated that the original PNC-50KA nose cone mold may have gotten damaged and that's what drove both the new one (with the revised shape) and the option of the Alpha III cone. That seems a plausible explanation for both the option of Alpha III cones and provides the opportunity for the replacement mold to have had a different shape.

I wish there was someone with firsthand knowledge we could ask about what happened then.....
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