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-   -   An older Astron Alpha (http://www.oldrocketforum.com/showthread.php?t=12812)

Blushingmule 08-07-2013 05:57 PM

An older Astron Alpha
 
Hi gents and ladies...

I nabbed a '60s Astron Alpha from e-Bastad. Opened but with original 'chute,
TR-1, updated centering rings for the motor mount (the earlier ones were thin
paper) and all patterns, etc.

Have the parts to build 3 from Semroc, this one will be fun and only flown w/
1/2 A & A's...

Bob
p.s. The Alpha was my 1st. back in '68...Dad & I launched it at the UOG sport field
in the evening...swish pop and it vanished literally as the Sun settled.

A Fish Named Wallyum 08-07-2013 06:07 PM

The Alpha was the first rocket I lost. I got it with a starter set as a 15th birthday present. Built it Friday night, painted it on Saturday with gloss white spray paint and red and black brush paint, and flew it on Sunday, still tacky, at the parking lot above the soccer field at NKU. It went straight up on a C6-5, popped the chute, and rode the breeze to the woods as Mom, Dave, Jen and I watched. A few years later NKU turned that strip of woods into a parking lot, and I'd think of the Alpha when I parked there. :D :cool:

blackshire 08-07-2013 09:56 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blushingmule
Hi gents and ladies...

I nabbed a '60s Astron Alpha from e-Bastad. Opened but with original 'chute,
TR-1, updated centering rings for the motor mount (the earlier ones were thin
paper) and all patterns, etc.

Have the parts to build 3 from Semroc, this one will be fun and only flown w/
1/2 A & A's...

Bob
p.s. The Alpha was my 1st. back in '68...Dad & I launched it at the UOG sport field
in the evening...swish pop and it vanished literally as the Sun settled.
That is fab! Does it have the fin planform shown here (see: http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/no...a/69estp50.html ) in the Estes "Model Rocketry Manual" (the yellow-pages section of the 1968 and 1969 Estes catalogs)? A few years ago here on YORF, there was a discussion about changes to the Alpha's fin planform that have occurred over the years. (I imagine the thin centering rings used in the very earliest Alpha kits were the same ones used [glued to JT-50 stage couplers] in the Astron Farside kit.)

A Fish Named Wallyum 08-07-2013 11:17 PM

Since we're on the subject......
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-Est...ea#ht_74wt_1330
This is kinda cool.

BEC 08-08-2013 12:24 AM

It'll be interesting to see if he gets his $100 or more.

Blushingmule 08-08-2013 09:28 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackshire
Does it have the fin planform shown here (see: http://www.ninfinger.org/rockets/no...a/69estp50.html ) in the Estes "Model Rocketry Manual" (the yellow-pages section of the 1968 and 1969 Estes catalogs)?


Yes. I just checked the fin pattern against the page in a catalog. Also, I recently received
some of Gordy's pre-Damon decals :)

Bob

A Fish Named Wallyum 08-08-2013 03:51 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEC
It'll be interesting to see if he gets his $100 or more.

I don't think it's unreasonable, but you'd have to be someone with a strong yen for the Alpha. I think he might have been better off starting the bidding a little lower.

gpoehlein 08-08-2013 05:06 PM

Yeah - the Alpha was my very first rocket I ever built. I've always loved it - simple and classic. Still a great flyer - I built one of the newer plastic nosed units, but I recently started a new one using a balsa nose from Semroc - the plastic nose cone just isn't the right shape compared to the BNC-50K.

blackshire 08-09-2013 12:56 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blushingmule
Yes. I just checked the fin pattern against the page in a catalog. Also, I recently received
some of Gordy's pre-Damon decals :)

Bob
Thank you. I didn't know the Alpha had any decals before the Damon era--I'd always thought the red and white decor scheme in the 1968 and 1969 Estes catalogs (1 red fin, red nose cone, red stripe, white body tube & 2 white fins) was masked & painted (like the Astron Mark's decor scheme, which included cradle marks or checkerboard fins, depending on the instructions-suggested decor scheme chosen). Also:

That's a nice Alpha kit "family grouping" in Bill's posting, but the eBay seller's starting bid of $96 does seem a bit steep...

A Fish Named Wallyum 08-09-2013 01:33 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackshire
Thank you. I didn't know the Alpha had any decals before the Damon era--I'd always thought the red and white decor scheme in the 1968 and 1969 Estes catalogs (1 red fin, red nose cone, red stripe, white body tube & 2 white fins) was masked & painted (like the Astron Mark's decor scheme, which included cradle marks or checkerboard fins, depending on the instructions-suggested decor scheme chosen).

They didn't. They were created based on a catalog picture. Pretty cool set if you ask me. There's a Big Bertha set that was created the same way, and possibly an Astron Cobra set. :cool:


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