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How to Launch a Model Rocket
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Launch Equipment

To launch a model rocket (model rocket) it is extremely important to select and prepare an appropriate launch site for the size of model rockets that are going to be flown. Once a site is chosen, setup the launch system (launch system) and establish boundaries of where people are allowed to be during a launch. Next prepare the rocket for launch by installing the model rocket engine (model rocket engine), and wadding (wadding) if required. Place the rocket on the launch pad (launch pad) and connect the launch controller (launch controller) to the igniter. From a safe distance, use the launch controller (launch controller) and count down 5.... 4.... 3.... 2.... 1.... LAUNCH!

Always follow the NAR Model Rocketry Safety Code (NAR Model Rocketry Safety Code) to assure a safe model rocket launch.

Select and Prepare the Launch Site

Launch Site Selection

Choose a large field away from power lines, trees, or buildings. The larger the launch site chosen, the better chance of recovering the model rocket (model rocket) for additional launches.

School playgrounds, football fields, and parks can be a great site for a model rocket launch. Make sure that the area is free of anything the may catch fire, like dry plants or grass, or any other flammable materials.

Launch Site Size

Engine Size Rocket Altitude Minimum Launch Area
1/2A 200' 50' by 50'
A 400' 100' by 100'
B 800' 200' by 200'
C 1600' 400' by 400'
D 2000' 500' by 500'

It is always better to have too big of a launch site than too small of one. Many model rockets use a parachute (parachute) for recovery (model rocket recovery), and often these rockets descend so slowly that they are very susceptible to drifting far away with even the slightest wind present.

Launch Site Preparation

Once the launch site is selected, chose a central location for the launch system (launch system), from which the rockets will be launched. Establish boundaries at a safe distance for onlookers to remain behind. Set positions for several trackers to be positioned to track the rocket during flight since some rockets are so fast, or fly so high, it often takes several people to track down the rocket.

Prepare the Launch System


The launch pad (launch pad) should be placed on firm stable ground in a central position in the launch site. Double check to make sure that the launch pad and launch controller (launch controller) are in working order and are free of damages or defects.

Make sure that you have the appropriately sized launch pad (launch pad) for the model rocket (model rocket) that is being launched. Some rockets require a thicker launch rod (launch rod) or even a longer launch rod, depending of the weight of the rocket and the strength of the rocket engine (rocket engine).

Many launch pads require some assembly, so this should be done before preceding to preparing the model rocket for launch.

Prepare the Rocket for Launch


5.... 4.... 3.... 2.... 1.... Launch!!

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