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Optima Upgrades

Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2015 10:56 am
by DBMcCann
So, I've kinda got a thing for the Optima. I have a 29mm, and a 38mm. A dual 29 should be finished soon.


The 29mm version was my first high power rocket. It's flown a decent number of times, and I enjoy it greatly. Ever since I killed two Alt 2's, it's been flying without data, and that's annoying. I'd also like the ability to fly EX loads across the trio of rockets. Enter nose based av-bays for single deploy. The weight of a full DD setup would significantly change the flights on small motors, which is part of the benefit of this rocket design.

The plan is to open the base of the nosecones, slide over a section of body tube, and bolt it in place. A bulkhead with two all thread mounted will be glued in place at the bottom of the coupler. The coupler will slide into the nose cone body tube, and be riveted or bolted into place. The all thread will be spaced to accept 38mm 3D printed sleds for the RRC2 or RRC3.

Small, light, and flexible. At least that's the plan.

Re: Optima Upgrades

Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2015 11:31 am
by patelldp
Cool! My advice to you is to never fly an altimeter without providing it a means to save itself. Years ago, I flew my LOC Expediter on a J350W with an AltAcc2C on board for data only in Cobleskill, NY. I got some grease on the delay and it never deploy...massive lawn dart ensued and a snapped altimeter. Had I had an apogee charge attached, I'd probably still have (or have sold) the altimeter.

Re: Optima Upgrades

Posted: Wed Nov 11, 2015 11:56 am
by DBMcCann
Indeed. Another benefit will be not having to buy multiple motor delays and trusting/drilling those delays. No more standing there going "come on..... come on...." I'll likely leave the motor delays as long as possible for backups.

Re: Optima Upgrades

Posted: Tue Nov 17, 2015 12:53 pm
by marcusSRG
Love the Optimas. Why do you prefer the Optima over The Shadow? Just curious.

This design has been a favorite of mine forever and I have an original Shadow that I've done so many mods to it's practically falling apart. I want to gut it and revert it back to stock (with some 18mm outboards, of course) and build a couple new ones -- one with a 24mm+6 18mm out of LOC for clusters and I've always dreamed of a 6" upscale with a center 54 and (3) 38mm outboards.

Looking forward to your 2x29mm version!

Re: Optima Upgrades

Posted: Tue Nov 17, 2015 1:02 pm
by DBMcCann
The Optima simply came first, and so I think of the Shadow as a paintjob for the Optima. :)


I'm considering painting the dual 29 in shadow colors.... toss up on the decal being "Optima" or "shadow"

I've got a NIB Optima, and a NIB Shadow to build too. and parts for a 24mm, and a 7x18mm, and a BT50 downscale, and and and......:)

(fleet stands at this bluetube optima, a 38mm version, the dual I'm working on, original built Optima and Shadow kits, and two BT60 optima's)

Re: Optima Upgrades

Posted: Tue Nov 17, 2015 1:20 pm
by marcusSRG
Gotcha. Saweeeeet pic!

Re: Optima Upgrades

Posted: Wed Nov 18, 2015 10:07 am
by FMarvinS
Great pictures of Optima in flight.
I agree with Dan-relying on motor delay alone can be perilous. I've seen
several launches end badly due to mistaken delay calculations.
I'm currently (and very slowly) building a 54 mm rocket (with 38 mm motor mount)
and I plan to incorporate the "tender descender" in lieu of classic DD. This simplifies the build
and may be a consideration for your dual 29 Optima build.
Good luck!