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  #1  
Old 03-25-2016, 12:31 PM
Mad City Flyers Mad City Flyers is offline
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Default Hangar 11 - X-15 Build

Hanson Skunk Works next project is a Hanger 11 Hobbies X-15 HPR.

Bobby Buchalski is the contact at Hangar 11 (Bobbb@hangar11.com) if you are interested in purchasing a kit. This is definitely a low production batch size custom kit so it might take a while to get all the components. The wait is definitely worth it as the materials and design are very impressive.

This build thread will be only highlights as there is an excellent thread on TRF by KenECoyote that is really nicely done. He also documents his modification of the kit to dual deploy recovery.

First step as always was sanding and more sanding to airfoil the fins, ensure fit of CRs in the airframe, the dry fit.

As I mentioned above the quality of the materials is excellent, which also means solid and heavy. The dry fit weight is already almost 4 lbs (1537g) and the expected final weight is between 6 and 8 lbs.

Here's what she looks like dry fit - what is missing are the plastic molded side wraps. Should be fun. Plan is to use a Jolly Logic Chute Release rather than dual deploy for close proximity recovery. Don't intend this bird to be an altitude champ, just really cool to fly.

Cheers!

Matt and Nate
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Old 03-25-2016, 11:45 PM
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Gus Gus is offline
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I'm glad you got your kit but I want others to know that dealing with Bobby at Hangar11 can be extremely frustrating and, for some, ultimately fruitless. I did eventually receive a refund from Bobby but only after numerous promises that things would be shipped, which never happened, and numerous unanswered emails.

I'm well aware that many of our kit makers are very small operations who don't operate like Amazon.com. If you tell me you're busy and won't be able to make parts for a month or two, I completely understand. But don't claim you're sending things out unless you really are, and don't make customers email you many times before you respond.

That was my experience within the last 5 months with Bobby at Hangar11.
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Old 03-26-2016, 10:30 AM
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luke strawwalker luke strawwalker is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gus
I'm glad you got your kit but I want others to know that dealing with Bobby at Hangar11 can be extremely frustrating and, for some, ultimately fruitless. I did eventually receive a refund from Bobby but only after numerous promises that things would be shipped, which never happened, and numerous unanswered emails.

I'm well aware that many of our kit makers are very small operations who don't operate like Amazon.com. If you tell me you're busy and won't be able to make parts for a month or two, I completely understand. But don't claim you're sending things out unless you really are, and don't make customers email you many times before you respond.

That was my experience within the last 5 months with Bobby at Hangar11.


Yes, agree completely... That's how Mark at Spacecraft Films tends to be-- overpromise and underdeliver, or keep you waiting months... and when you DO FINALLY get *some* sort of communication from him, it's basically worthless because you never know IF he's going to do anything *remotely* like what he is telling you he's going to do...

It just leads to frustration and anger on the customer's part and leads to a reputation as a vendor that is lower than crocodile p!ss... And you know the old saying-- a "happy customer" tells 2-3 people... a PO'd customer tells 50...

It's really not that hard, or shouldn't be... just TELL THE TRUTH, and don't promise something by a given date if you're NOT going to do it in a timely fashion. If it's something "in development" that might or might not happen, DON'T ANNOUNCE IT as "coming soon" like it's a "fer-shur dun deal" (and ends up being "vaporware"...) If you're making them one by one in your spare time and filling orders only on holidays off the day job, make sure the customer knows that and don't act like the order is going out ten minutes after the money is in hand... Read yer flippin' email and answer it once in awhile, and just tell it like it is... don't overpromise and underdeliver...

Most folks are pretty understanding and will happily work with a vendor that's being straight up about what's going on and when they reasonably figure that the order will be fulfilled. BUT most folks get frustrated to the stratosphere when a vendor simply won't communicate, or whatever they say is meaningless because they exaggerate, obfuscate, or outright lie and won't do what they said they'd do when they said they'd do it... and want to keep the money for months... (or keep the money forever and stiff the customer, like Sheri's Hot Rockets did and the LAUNCH magazine bunch did...)

Later! OL J R
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Old 03-26-2016, 09:09 PM
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dlazarus6660 dlazarus6660 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luke strawwalker
Yes, agree completely... That's how Mark at Spacecraft Films tends to be-- overpromise and underdeliver, or keep you waiting months... and when you DO FINALLY get *some* sort of communication from him, it's basically worthless because you never know IF he's going to do anything *remotely* like what he is telling you he's going to do...

It just leads to frustration and anger on the customer's part and leads to a reputation as a vendor that is lower than crocodile p!ss... And you know the old saying-- a "happy customer" tells 2-3 people... a PO'd customer tells 50...

It's really not that hard, or shouldn't be... just TELL THE TRUTH, and don't promise something by a given date if you're NOT going to do it in a timely fashion. If it's something "in development" that might or might not happen, DON'T ANNOUNCE IT as "coming soon" like it's a "fer-shur dun deal" (and ends up being "vaporware"...) If you're making them one by one in your spare time and filling orders only on holidays off the day job, make sure the customer knows that and don't act like the order is going out ten minutes after the money is in hand... Read yer flippin' email and answer it once in awhile, and just tell it like it is... don't overpromise and underdeliver...

Most folks are pretty understanding and will happily work with a vendor that's being straight up about what's going on and when they reasonably figure that the order will be fulfilled. BUT most folks get frustrated to the stratosphere when a vendor simply won't communicate, or whatever they say is meaningless because they exaggerate, obfuscate, or outright lie and won't do what they said they'd do when they said they'd do it... and want to keep the money for months... (or keep the money forever and stiff the customer, like Sheri's Hot Rockets did and the LAUNCH magazine bunch did...)

Later! OL J R



How dare you use the word "obfuscate"! I am an educated person and my wife an english teacher at a local high school and even she has heard the word but could not remember the meaning!

Anyway, a good word. Thank you.

ob·fus·cate
ˈäbfəˌskāt/
verb
verb: obfuscate; 3rd person present: obfuscates; past tense: obfuscated; past participle: obfuscated; gerund or present participle: obfuscating

render obscure, unclear, or unintelligible.
"the spelling changes will deform some familiar words and obfuscate their etymological origins"
synonyms: obscure, confuse, make unclear, blur, muddle, complicate, overcomplicate, muddy, cloud, befog
"mere rationalizations to obfuscate rather than clarify the real issue"
antonyms: clarify
bewilder (someone).
"it is more likely to obfuscate people than enlighten them"
synonyms: bewilder, mystify, puzzle, perplex, confuse, baffle, confound, bemuse, befuddle, nonplus; informalflummox
"her work became more and more obfuscated by mathematics and jargon"

Origin
late Middle English: from late Latin obfuscat- ‘darkened,’ from the verb obfuscare, based on Latin fuscus ‘dark.’
Translate obfuscate to
Use over time for: obfuscate
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Old 03-27-2016, 09:59 AM
Mad City Flyers Mad City Flyers is offline
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Default Time Out!

Happy Easter to all!

Based upon the replies to this thread both private and public I clearly stepped on one of the model rocketry land mines. I am relatively new to this community only getting really involved in the last two years, so hope people will understand that I only wanted to share what I thought would be a cool rocket build.

Yes, some very small shop vendors like Hangar 11 Hobbies do not match the customer service and quality of our bigger vendors. Yes, my experience to date with the X-15 kit has been frustrating with delayed shipping, some incorrect or missing parts, and pretty sparse assembly instructions.

I did however enter into my purchase of the Hangar 11 X-15 kit forewarned. I had read multiple posts on TRF cautioning buyers about the issues I have in fact encountered. Based upon this "research" I took the risk to roll the dice with my $300 and give Bobby at Hangar 11 my business.

If my original post gave unfair or unwarranted support for Hangar 11's business that was not my intent. I did provide some cautionary statements in my post and of course we are all responsible for making our own purchase decisions.

Bobby to date has responded to all my emails within 24hrs, he has provided answers to questions, and he has promised to fix errors with the order. At this time, I have no data to suggest that Bobby is anything but a small shop guy, doing it all himself part-time, more to support our hobby than make a significant profit. I do not know Bobby personally and have no interest in his business.

I will not continue posting to this thread as it has diverted dramatically from my original intent.

Best to all and I look forward to seeing you at the next launch!


Matt
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Old 03-27-2016, 09:38 PM
luke strawwalker's Avatar
luke strawwalker luke strawwalker is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mad City Flyers
Happy Easter to all!

Based upon the replies to this thread both private and public I clearly stepped on one of the model rocketry land mines. I am relatively new to this community only getting really involved in the last two years, so hope people will understand that I only wanted to share what I thought would be a cool rocket build.

Yes, some very small shop vendors like Hangar 11 Hobbies do not match the customer service and quality of our bigger vendors. Yes, my experience to date with the X-15 kit has been frustrating with delayed shipping, some incorrect or missing parts, and pretty sparse assembly instructions.

I did however enter into my purchase of the Hangar 11 X-15 kit forewarned. I had read multiple posts on TRF cautioning buyers about the issues I have in fact encountered. Based upon this "research" I took the risk to roll the dice with my $300 and give Bobby at Hangar 11 my business.

If my original post gave unfair or unwarranted support for Hangar 11's business that was not my intent. I did provide some cautionary statements in my post and of course we are all responsible for making our own purchase decisions.

Bobby to date has responded to all my emails within 24hrs, he has provided answers to questions, and he has promised to fix errors with the order. At this time, I have no data to suggest that Bobby is anything but a small shop guy, doing it all himself part-time, more to support our hobby than make a significant profit. I do not know Bobby personally and have no interest in his business.

I will not continue posting to this thread as it has diverted dramatically from my original intent.

Best to all and I look forward to seeing you at the next launch!


Matt


Not at all... This was just a slight sidetrack in the discussion that sometimes occurs... There's nothing wrong with pointing out to the uninformed where a certain vendor has a less that rapid and reliable reputation... Speaking from experience I know that I would have been VERY happy to know that about certain vendors beforehand... So long as the truth is being spoken and situations that have occurred are accurately conveyed, such information is a service to other rocketeers.

The decision ultimately lies with the individual rocketeer that is contemplating a purchase with a given vendor, regardless of any information from anybody else, positive or negative. The information can simply be conveyed, and it's up to the individual to decide what credence, if any, to give it, and decide for themselves.

At any rate, sorry to have dragged your thread off-topic in discussing the vendor in question here. I think it's good that your presenting a counterpoint to the assertions that have been made that some folks have had less than stellar service from the vendor. Perhaps the vendor is trying to make a new start. I don't know and cannot say, but it's good to get countervailing viewpoints out there for folks to make more informed decisions, either way...

Plus, it looks like you have an interesting project going, and it'd be nice to see the completion and experiences of it. So, if you can bear this short diversion, hopefully the thread can now get back on track as you continue with the build and flying of this rocket...

Thanks and good luck! OL J R
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Old 04-24-2016, 09:49 AM
Mad City Flyers Mad City Flyers is offline
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Default X-15 Complete!!

Ok, I'm done pouting about my thread being hijacked and here's the final story.

First, yes this was pretty much the most challenging build to date from Soup to Nuts!! It took about 2+ months from initial order to get all of the correct materials from Hangar 11. Although this was a drag, Bobby B. did follow through and I received everything I paid for. The total investment for this project is running around $500 for kit, materials, ejection timer, parachute, recovery harness, and motor. Definitely testing my hobby allowance.

Second, yes, the side wraps were a real challenge and I did not get them fitted perfectly meaning I had to add some filler to get a good finish.

Third, this bird is heavy fully loaded (9+ pounds) so as intended it will be a show flyer rather than a performance flyer.

Here's the list of modifications that I introduced:
  • Replaced one of the forward centering rings to allow for motors up to 38/1080
  • Set thin internal and external epoxy fillets for strength
  • Used bondo filler to close all gaps in the side wraps
  • Added a tube coupler to create an AV bay in the nose cone
  • Added 500g of steel BBs embedded in epoxy to the nose cone

I was uncomfortable with the idea of launching such a heavy rocket with only motor ejection for the recovery so the AV bay is fit with a PerfectFlite Timer. The timer will be set just after the motor ejection delay to provide some safety. Also, don't want to see this pretty model auger in as test pilots used to say.

Check out the pick of the model balancing at its CG. The CP is right between the forward wings so pushing the CG at list 1+ caliber's forward took a decent amount of weight (1+lbs).

Plan is for first flight on a J350W at the mid May Bong launch!!

Cheers all!

Matt and Nate


Here's a few build pics:
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Old 04-24-2016, 07:27 PM
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burkefj burkefj is offline
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Nice, what is your rtf auw?
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Old 04-24-2016, 07:46 PM
Mad City Flyers Mad City Flyers is offline
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Default Recovery by parachute

Hi

Despite the fact that it looks like a plane it would fall like a 9lb rock. Recovery will be on a 48" diameter parachute.

There are some X-15 rocket glider models out there.

Matt
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Old 06-19-2016, 03:40 PM
Mad City Flyers Mad City Flyers is offline
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Default X-15 First Flight!

Finally got a chance to fly this bird at the Bong.

First flight was on an Aerotech J350W. Used a timer as a backup ejection charge.

Second flight was on an Aerotech DMS J425R.

Day was perfect with light winds and clear skies. Both flights were perfect with nice straight launches off the pad and a pretty arc at apogee.

So the final result was worth the hassle.

Here's the Launch videos


Matt
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Last edited by Mad City Flyers : 06-19-2016 at 10:02 PM. Reason: Added video link
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