Model Rocket Launch

Today I went to my daughter’s school to launch a rocket for her astronomy class. The rocket I launched was a large one: my daughter had been telling her classmates about it and several of them did not believe in a model rocket more than six feet tall. My daughter was delighted when I walked into her classroom carrying the thing.

The wind was blowing much stronger than we had anticipated, and that created some difficulties in launching the rocket. In fact, I had a pre-launch incident that actually damaged the rocket slightly prior to launch: the wind took hold and pulled one of the launch lugs off the side of the rocket. Fortunately, I was able to do a temporary fix and taped it back on. Then we had trouble with the electrical running to the igniter: one of the clips pulled loose. But finally, in the end, all was well and we successfully launched the rocket and recovered it in an undamaged state.

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Here are some photos of me with the rocket. First, is a picture just prior to launch. The wind really caught hold of my hair, demonstrating that I probably need to have my hair cut:

And here I’m trying to get the clips to stay put on the igniter:
And here is a picture following the rocket launch:
For those interested in such things, the rocket is a model available for purchase. The kit was manufactured by Estes and can be purchased through

I used the largest recommended rocket motor for this launch, an E9-6.

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About R.P. Nettelhorst

I'm married with three daughters. I live in southern California and I'm the interim pastor at Quartz Hill Community Church. I have written several books. I spent a couple of summers while I was in college working on a kibbutz in Israel. In 2004, I was a volunteer with the Ansari X-Prize at the winning launches of SpaceShipOne. Member of Society of Biblical Literature, American Academy of Religion, and The Authors Guild
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