Field Box - What's in yours?
For RC there are universal tools needed like the electric starter and glow driver. What are the things you bring to the field on launch day? What are some of the tricks to make loading the engines and readying the rocket for flight.
I have a hand held tool box that fits 2 estes launch pads, 2 launch controllers, a box with 24 engines, a small box to hold igniters I will use for that day, a small box to hold the igniter plugs, pliers, CA glue and some lead weight. Have I forgotten anything?
I have several range boxes. One holds stuff for model rocket launches. Another has stuff for working with reloadable motors. Another has stuff for larger rockets. Another has bug spray, sun screen, wet wipes, band aids, etc.
I use the Stanley tool boxes you can get for less than $10 at Wal-Mart, Home Depot, or Lowes. They stack nicely (though they did change the design some time in the past). I also have boxes organized for specific tasks such as model rocket building, working on electronics, general house repairs, etc. That way I can grab one box and have the right tools for a specific job.
Anyway ... to actually answer your question .... In addition to the things you list, for model rocket launches, I try to make sure I have masking tape, a dowel for pushing out spent motors or liners from reloads, extra 'chutes and streamers, a sheet of sandpaper, a pencil, a pen, miscellaneous hardware such as snap swivels, a razor knife, a couple of used motors in case I need a stand-off, and a small bag of dog barf.
Another good thread... :D
I have a plastic Craftsman tool box with removeable tray insert, and two snap-in small parts boxes on the lid. They're usually empty, but they would be good for extra igniters and nozzle plugs.
I take a grill mat to place the launch pad on top of, instead of setting it directly on the ground. Keeps stray sparks and the occasional rod-hang from causing a grass fire.
I'm debating carrying a hand-pump garden sprayer with about a gallon of water in it during the dry months.
The box carries at least two controller units, some spare batteries, a gallon bag of dog barf, a container of talcuum powder, a small box of loose motors (left-overs from opened packs), some spare parachutes and streamers, extra snap links, a roll of masking tape, an X-Acto #1 knife and spare #11 blades, pens and small notebooks.
Recently I've been carrying a digital camera with me to record some flight moments, a large notebook, and now my laptop computer to link with my AstroVision to download captures.
Generally, I carry two or three bottles of water to drink, especially in the warm months.
I usually just walk out the back door to fly and the range box stays in the house. :D
I'll have to think about what I normally carry to fly LPR away from home.
For LPR BP
Estes/Quest motor plugs
E to D spacers
X-acto knife and a few blades
white and CA glue
Good 3M masking tape that doesn't melt when used to friction fit (more important with AP motors)
Scotch/Magic/Clear (whatever you call it) tape
Extra leads/clips for launcher
Needle nose pliers
A few launch lugs
Little Estes/Quest launch controller as backup for my main launch system
Sandpaper and steel wool to clean microclips and steel launch rods
A few chutes and some crepe streamer material, shroud line, some tape disks and whatever else is still in the "Estes Emergency Kit" I got as a kid...still in the bottom of the range box. I'll likely never use any of that because I use snap swivels on all the LPR rockets I build these days and can swap chutes between them if needed because of damage, wind conditions, etc.
I keep tools in my truck all the time so I don't have to add those to the range box. Needle nose pliers are used often enough to keep in the range box, though. I also keep a set of turnout gear in my truck. I can put on the pants and boots and stomp out a lot more fire than any of the little dry chemical or water extinguishers. :D If it's pretty dry, I'll throw a shovel in the truck for extra firefighting use.
My HPR box has a lot of other specialty stuff in addition to the HPR versions of a lot of the above stuff like quick links instead of snap swivels, etc. It sits all lonely as I haven't flown any HPR since the new legislation after 9/11.
snap ring pliers (I mostly did EX stuff)
altimeter box with altimeters, batteries, extra leads, etc.
premade ejection cups
dog barf (actually kept separately)
drill bit for adjusting delay grains
paper towels and wet wipes or waterless hand cleaner
I'm sure there's a lot more, but it's been a long time, and I'm not going out in the cold to look.
I'll add to the LPR/BP list when I go upstairs and look in it.
Come on guys.....what ever happened to just carrying the tweesers?
Great list guys.
Since my old steel launch rods seem to get dirty so I always carry some 3 in 1 oil and some 400 grit sandpaper. I give them a quick sanding and then clean the with a rag and the 3 in 1 oil.
Notebook & pens to record flight logs :p ( I am a nerd )
Cloths pins for that needed rod standoff
Extra balsa wood for repairs
2+ foot piece of 1/4 inch dowel
Extra shock cord
Can't tell you how many times someone at a launch has to borrow my pair of pliers and/or
masking tape as they "forgot" theirs....
Also, at the most recent NAR Regional meet we had at JSC, I forgot my waterproof boots;
the result was my shoes, socks and feet got muddy and wet from having to traverse through the recovery area to retrieve our models :mad: .
One thing I came up with is one of those little tackle boxes that fit in your pocket.
At a large launch like at NARAM when you are a long ways from your "stuff" I keep my little tackle box in my pocket and it has extra igniters and igniter plugs.
Just in case of a missfire. You won't have to trudge all the way back to get a new igniter...oh...and those little plastic plugs sometimes fall out and get lost in the grass.
Yup, I use one of those as well for the same purpose. Comes in very handy.
hmm, depends on the launch, I guess.
I rarely, if ever fly locally by myself anymore, if so would take my 'general use' box and toss some pads,etc in a cardboard box, lol .
I tend to use Plano fishing tackle boxes ( I have a couple identical that stack up nice), and a toolbox for my reload 'stuff', plus a few of the clear rubbermaid shoebox / storage boxes for motros,etc.
general use box ( tackle box, always needed) has
igniters ( low and hpr),
wire wrap wire for extending leds (hpr or clusters),
screwdrivers,pens,wire wrap tool, etc,
emery boards, sandpaper ( cleanign clips), spare micro clip set, too
Estes recovery wadding
spare chutes and streamer material
scotch tape ( staging and repairing chutes)
needlenose and regular pliers
allen wrenches for motro retainers or the Magnum Inc launch pad
hardware to reload retention
spare quick links
6" ruler, scissors
talc powder for chutes
gotta be something I missed...
second tackle box has all my altimeres/ harnesses / etc for flying HPR
Stack-On toolbox ( Christmas present form my dad years back ) has reload 'stuff' ( small casings, nozzles, grease, snapring pliers, sticks for pushing out liners, can of R/C car motor cleaner spray - works great on reloads,too , alcohol and handi-wipes, craft store organizer boxes inside with sorted spare o-rings, snap rings, etc. and delay kits.
I store my motors in the clear rubbermaid containers - one for black powder, one for single use composite type motors, one for reload kits.
so.. when we head out to a major launch - we actually have a LOT of gear ( all the above, plus the type 4 daybox, and a large ammo box with HPR reload hardware, etc...
whew... now I know why I only fly low to mid power these days, and at launches where pads are club-provided. :)
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