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Mega Mosquito repair
#1
As my first "Through the Wall" build, I didn't think to glue the fins against the motor mount as I assembled my first Mega Mosquito a year ago.

Eventually, a chute failure wiggled the fins and one came loose, but didn't snap. Instead, I've been able to back it out of the slot, as only the fillet failed.  Now, I have a separate fin, a slightly cracked fillet on a second, and a secure third still in place.


Since my only access to the insides is through this fin slot, how do you recommend I fix/repair/strengthen my Mega Mosquito?

I used yellow Elmers Carpentry glue when assembling, and have a limited amounts of thin CA available...

What do you suggest?  Hypo injection of glue?  Ignoring the motor mount question and gluing the fillets back in place?
Drilling through the lower centering ring?

I need help.
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#2
I wouldn't get too complicated. Squrt some glue in the slot and let ti drip onto the motor tube. run a bead of glue on the edges of the fin tab. push it in place and hold/clamp it in place as best you can. When it's dry, apply fillets.


If the other crack is bad, try exposing the crack and injecting some more wood glue into it. if it's not bad enough for that, just glue over it.
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#3
Wait until the next Estes sale and buy another one. Just fly this one as is and let it live with its scars. Fix it as well as you can until you can't.
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#4
The fix for the one that came out is obvious.  I have drilled more than one rear CR to add internal fillets to beef up/ fix a rocket. I suggest 15 min epoxy.
Member of MDRA, NAR and NARHAMS;
Level-2 certified but mostly fly G and under;
Volunteer compiler of manufacturer's news for ROCKETS Magazine.
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#5
+1  Like he said, I'd drill a hole and drip some epoxy (though, I'd go with 30 minute) in to give it a solid internal fillet.

(06-11-2015, 07:28 PM)Bill Eichelberger Wrote: Wait until the next Estes sale and buy another one.  Just fly this one as is and let it live with its scars.  Fix it as well as you can until you can't.

Estes hasn't done a major sale for the last few holidays, and the MM is no longer on the product roster, or listed in the latest catalog.

You can fix it, clone it, or buy one from a reseller.  Just don't hope to see it on sale from Estes anytime soon.
.
NAR #100544

"The Guide says there is an art to flying", said Ford, "or rather a knack." 
"The knack lies in learning how to throw yourself at the ground and miss."

Launching is Optional... Landing? That Depends on Trees.

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#6
(06-12-2015, 11:39 AM)K Wrote: +1  Like he said, I'd drill a hole and drip some epoxy (though, I'd go with 30 minute) in to give it a solid internal fillet.

(06-11-2015, 07:28 PM)Bill Eichelberger Wrote: Wait until the next Estes sale and buy another one.  Just fly this one as is and let it live with its scars.  Fix it as well as you can until you can't.

Estes hasn't done a major sale for the last few holidays, and the MM is no longer on the product roster, or listed in the latest catalog.

You can fix it, clone it, or buy one from a reseller.  Just don't hope to see it on sale from Estes anytime soon.
Wow, this is my second try at a response...the first was just the quote...

30 minute will give more working time and will be easier to get into smallish holes. However, if there is a gap in the root/tube point, it will tend to sneak through to unwanted parts. Probably only an issue when I cut my own fins Undecided (I'm pretty sure I have only used 15/20 minute as that is the slowest I buy (except for West which is too thin for such a repair IMO).
Member of MDRA, NAR and NARHAMS;
Level-2 certified but mostly fly G and under;
Volunteer compiler of manufacturer's news for ROCKETS Magazine.
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#7
I went with a combination of above recommendations.

First, I diluted a bit of yellow carpenter glue enough to suck it up with a hypodermic that was left over from some other craft project.
I stuck it down at an angle and attempted to seal the other two fins to the motor mount by letting it set for a while with that point being the lowest the glue could drain to.
After several (two) hours, I hoped that it had set up enough to handle the rocket.
I decided I was being to shy and to be bolder. I stuck the slot opening of the yellow carpenter glue right up against the open slot of the missing fin, and squeezed while dragging it along the slot. I tipped it the other way, and again tried the same thing for the other attached fin. This time, I waited 4 hours and hoped that the glue would dry in that somewhat confined space. I decided to hedge my bets, and set the unit in front of the airconditioner, so that the air could blow over, into and thru the slot. And I waited two more hours.

Then I decided to tackle the missing fin, sanding it flat on the root edge, dripping yellow carpenter glue straight down into the slot onto the motor mount, applied it along the root edge and along the sheared fillet underside ( that was still attached to the fin!) and slid it back into the slot with some difficulty. Once in place, it was going to be awkward to try to hold it/clamp it... so I started stringing fat rubber bands around the body tube and the fin to hold it vertacle. I also set it in front of the A/C again and left it overnight.

In the morning, I moved it out to the patio table in bright hot June sunlight and left it for two more hours with new fillets applied again. After about 12 hours of glueing and waiting, I am
ready to try to launch again.

However, our launch date was abruptly terminated by a pair of supercells, which turned out to be good. In all my attention to the fins, I had forgotten to sellect/attach a parachute and prepare wadding. So the nose cone wasn't even tied to the shock cord. In short, I wouldn't have been ready to launch even if I could. (So I used my 18 inch chute and a piece of Nomex a fellow rocketeer sent me as a sample, and finished it up while watching SNL Saturday night. I'll be ready for next month...

I also decided to create more fillets for the fins.
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#8
Update: After finishing repairs, I repainted a few portions of the Mega Mosquito, and launched it twice at the July club launch.

The first flight went perfectly on a D12-3. I reloaded it all while talking , and discovered a ding in a leading edge of one of the fins, but ignored it. The second flight, the shock cord wrapped around a fin, and with no more pull to drag the chute out, the unit fell nose first, trailing the nose cone and shock cord.... impacting the ground and crumpling the body tube a bit.

With just a little less drag getting the chute out, it would have been another perfect flight. However, with the wrinkles in the body tube, I am hesitant about trying to launch it again.

I am considering building another from a tube that I slotted and the excess parts (minus decals) that I scored off eBay. Having learned a bit about through the wall construction, and sanding of sandwiched fins, and how to glue every edge possible during assembly...and having some black and yellow paint still available... I could make another one . or else paint it alien/avocado green.

I might indulge myself to make another one, just for fun, as I've got a three-pack of D12-5 to burn off and only one other rocket that takes them right now!
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#9
(07-27-2015, 05:45 PM)Kirk G Wrote: I might indulge myself to make another one, just for fun, as I've got a three-pack of D9-5 to burn off and only one other rocket that takes them right now!

D9-3 and D9-5? Color me confused?
Recently finished: Estes Nova Payloader, Estes Star Wars R2D2
In the paint booth: Estes Super Neon XL, MPC Taurus-1, Estes Screamin' Mimi
Under construction: Estes Pathfinder, Estes Magician (2440), TLP Hellfire AGM-114A
Ready for decals: Semroc Cherokee D, Quasar XL
On deck: Centuri Vector V, TLP Martel AS 37
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#10
OOps, wrote the motor value from memory. They were D12-3 and D12-5 still available, not D9 as I wrote initially.
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