Hi! At the NHS Rocketry Club we've been trying to think of something to do for the rest of the year now that TARC is over. One option we're considering is getting junior High Power Level 1 certifications for some of our members. I thought I'd ask the people here since you've been helpful with TARC before:
-How much cost should we expect to incur per student?
-Is it better to scratch-build or use kits for our certification rockets?
-I know we can't purchase the motors ourselves without being 18 and having a certification already. Would someone here be willing/able to help us with that?
-Would someone here be willing to act as a mentor for us?
Hi, pursing your Jr L1 is a nice step to extend your rocketry knowledge to the next level.
I would recommend scratch build, especially since you have a lot of experience designing and building TARC rockets. You can do it for $30-70 per rocket, depending on how many TARC parts you can re-purpose. Also, if you buy tubes, etc in bulk, you can drive the price down. Using 3d printer and/or laser cutter to create parts will also help to keep your cost down. The NC tends to be pricey, but you can 3d print that.
An H motor (CTI reloadable) runs about $20ish. Yes, club members can obtain them for you and also provide the motor casing to borrow, if you don't have them.
If you come to a club meeting on the 1st, 3rd Tue at the Hatch makerspace in Watertown, it is the best opportunity to meet with club members, get connected to a mentor, ask questions, review designs.
I can send you a base design that one of the college teams use for their L1. You can perhaps use that as a starting point. It has instructions, bill of materials, and open rocket sim file.
You guys are engineers. Definitely use open rocket or rock sim to vet your design. Also, go to thrustcurve.org and look up an H motor, say CTI H133 blue streak. Go to the thrust curve graph and look at the avg and peak thrusts in lbs. You will have to build your rocket to withstand these forces in the bulkheads, fins and glue joints. You can still do it with cardboard and wood, but things will need to be a bit sturdier than for TARC rockets. You guys are TARC, so I probably don't have to tell you this. Try to keep the altitude low, say < 1000 ft, but maintain 5:1 weight to thrust ratio.
Really good input from Curtis. A couple of other procedural things to remember: When you go for your certification flight, you will need the signature of a parent or legal guardian on the paper work. You will also need a Level 1 or higher certified flier to be your sponsor for each and every Level 1 flight that you want to do, including your certification flight. Good news is that once you are a certified Junior Level 1 flier, you automatically become a Senior Level 1 flier on your 18th birthday! (Assuming of course you are still a current NAR member).