Model Rocketry

One of the classic 'geek' passtimes. At least in the U.S.A. Over here, its a bit different - the population density is lower, and the urban sprawl greater, so getting enough people together to form a club is tough. Getting them to travel the 70-100km needed to reach an area open enough to fly things over 1000' is tougher.

Nevertheless, we managed to get the Perth Advanced Rocketry Club up and running, with a bit of help from a local hobby store. I was a part of PARC for about 4 years, until differing opinions on publicity and increasing membership lead to me leaving. They are still flying, and if you enquire at Stanbridges Hobbies, you can find out when their next flight meeting is. Go along, and be amazed at what they can do!

For my part, most of my model rocket flying is as a part of public displays, or as demonstration for groups, such a Scout Troops. Every year, with the kind help of Stanbridges Hobbies, we run display flights at the Perth Astrofest. This is a charity fundraiser held by Binocular, Telescope and Optical World in Mount Hawthorne.

Some of the things I have done with model rockets have included:

Of these, I am most proud of the 35mm camera hack. From that came a series of other camera hacks, cuminating in a number of digital camera hacks. Those, whilst bearing no resemblence to my design, I like to think of being inspired by it. Certainly it was better people than me who decided (wisely) to use PIC systems to handle the triggering, rather than my very rough 555-timer circuit!