Model Rocket Plans

 

Peter Alway's Home Page

Here are some plans for assorted model rockets.  Some are original, some are clones, some are my own designs based on stolen ideas.  I've tried to imitate the style of the old Estes industries free plans, with an exploded drawing, parts list, patterns, and a few additional helpful figures.  These were all adapted from MacDraw Pro documents and turned into GIF files at 72 pixels per inch.  They should naturally print out at the correct scale on a Macintosh.  Some drawings have 1" (25.4 mm) squares to help you scale them correctly.

If you build one of these models, I'd be pleased to know, so don't be shy about sending me an e-mail with a launch report.   Please say something about rockets in the subject line so I know you aren't spam.

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Model Rocket Plans

My First Rocket Astron Starlight Astron X-Ray Zubenelgenubi Saturn IV
Saturn I Astrobee 500 LRD-D-1 Vostok Zvezdotchka

My big brother Bob introduced me to model rocketry when I was just six or seven years old. He helped me build My First Rocket, which I never named. But later, during a junior high school
summer vacation, I sketched out all the model rockets I'd made up to that time. A few years ago, I turned the sketch, along with my fuzzy memory, into a model plan. I don't know why
anyone would want to build the thing, but maybe it has a useful idea or two. It used a clear plastic tube to hold the parachute (considering how empty clear plastic payload sections tend to be,
it wasn't such a bad idea) and ejection ducting through the balsa adapter.

Alas, the flight wasn't so hot. I suspect I just put a half-A into it. The model rose up, arced over, and crashed into the ground. Such is life.

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This is the Astron Starlight.  A cool-looking old Estes kit.  Plans and patterns are in two files. starlightsmall.gif (1539 bytes)
The Astron X-Ray was cool, too.  The X-ray featured a clear payload section.  Vern Estes says he found the word "Astron" in the dictionary, the definition sounded good, and the word sounded really neat by early 60's standards. xray.gif (1279 bytes)
I named the Zubenelgenubi after a fun-to-say star in Libra.  This model actually flew at a couple of friends' wedding.  The gimmick is that 8 BT-5's didn't quite make a nice fit around a BT-50, so I added some fins between pairs of BT-50's.  For full-resolution plans, you can buy "Peter's Little Book of Goofy Rocket Plans" from the NAR's Technical Service. zuben.gif (1480 bytes)
The old reliable took some design elements from the Saturn rockets, but it was kind of ugly.  In grad school, I did a better job of using the same gimmick.   The Saturn IV is my best pseudo-scale model.  Click for plan page 1 and page 2.  For full-resolution plans, you can buy "Peter's Little Book of Goofy Rocket Plans" from the NAR's Technical Service. Saturn_IV.jpg (7428 bytes)
This real scale plan for the Saturn I comes from my out-of-Print book, the Art of Scale Model Rocketry.  Since I can't make money off the plan, here it is for free.  Page 1 has an exploded drawing with parts list, page 2 has assembly instructions, page 3 has more instructions, page 4 has patterns, and page 5 has detail parts.

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Another scale model from "The Art of Scale Model Rocketry" was the Astrobee 500Page 1 includes and exploded diagram, and page 2 has construction tips and patterns astrobt.gif (906 bytes)
In the 1930's, a Mr. Razumov and a Mr. Shtern of the Leningrad branch of GIRD came up with their LRD-D-3.  It's one of the most futuristic rockets to fly.   I built one around BT-60 lrd.gif (1143 bytes)
The Soviet Vostok, which launched Yuri Gagarin, the first human to orbit the Earth, is a very complex rocket to model.  To celebrate the 35th anniversary of his launch, I drew up these simplified plans for Sport Rocketry.  Plans include an exploded drawing with parts list, assembly instructions, and patterns.   This model isn't all that detailed (the interstage struts are painted on) and it isn't perfectly accurate (the lower part of the core is too big) but it's a reasonably simple project.  For scale data, see the space rocketry page.  For a shot of this model at ignition, go to the photo page.  For images of someone else's build-up of the model, click here.

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When fellow HUVARS member Mark Simpson built a giant flying carrot, I felt obligated to respond with a rabbit rocket.  The Zvezdotchka Anti-Carrot Missile (Zvezdotchka was a rabbit who flew into space aboard a Soviet V-2-A in 1960) is an original design.   I forgot to put a scaling square on this plan.  The plan should be printed at 72 dpi.   I recall that the front view circle is 1 5/8" in diameter.  But not an original idea.  Estes used to sell the Cloud Hopper, and you can download that design from Jim Z's plan site.  For full-resolution Zvezdotchka plans, you can buy "Peter's Little Book of Goofy Rocket Plans" from the NAR's Technical Service.  If this color scheme is too dull for you, then try Vietnamese jungle cammoflage. zveztan.gif (1241 bytes)
This is as simple a scratchbuilt scale model as I can come up with--a BT-50 D Region Tomahawk with an Alpha nose cone and engine mount. dregionthu.jpg (13613 bytes)

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