Wednesday, April 29, 2009
On Wings of Balsa
On April 25th, a fellow named Steve Eves broke a world record by launching the world's biggest and heaviest model rocket, a 1/10 scale Saturn V.
When I was younger, model rockets captured my imagination. I only wound up launching a few, with varying degrees of success, but I always had fun.
One day in 1983, Keith Gylander, Ron Westman and my brother Sean and I (Sean's the young one in the middle) crossed the street to East Elementary and launched a model X-Wing, purchased several years before in Leaf Rapids, assembled only days before this launch.
Unfortunately, I forgot to stuff the protective wadding into the nose cone, so the parachute flare damaged the 'chute and the model plunged to earth instead of floating down safely. So this rocket had one and only one launch. But for a few moments, we all slipped the surly bonds of Earth and rode in that tiny plastic cockpit, heading for the stars.