Restroom facility at the RRS MTA is ready

by Dave Nordling, President, RRS.ORG

After a three week testing period, the Reaction Research Society is pleased to announce that the containerized restroom facility is ready for use by our guests and members. Several modifications and improvements were made which have been demonstrated sufficiently. This project has been a few years in the making but well worth the effort.

The electrical, water and sewage systems in both rooms are in working order which means sinks, urinals and flushing toilets are ready for our next event. Some of the interior fixtures are still in work. The interior shower, hot water system and external safety shower are coming soon.

This much-requested and much-desired infrastructure upgrade was built by the hard work of several members over many weekends in all seasons over a couple years. We have many to thank including Dimitri Timohovich, Osvaldo Tarditti, Waldo Stakes, Dave Nordling, Keith Yoerg, Joe Dominguez, Bill Inman, Manuel Marquez, Wilbur Owens and Larry Hoffing,

There’s still more work to go including the floors, shower and hot water system, but we do want to recognize this milestone in our campaign to upgrade our facilities for our membership and our invited guests. Our pit toilet will remain as a backup but many will appreciate a little modern convenience in our remote location.

MTA work event, 2023-03-03

Dimitri Timohovich, RRS.ORG

Last weekend saw a big dent put into the bathroom project. On Friday, 3/3/23, I was able to install the 2 remaining pass-throughs, one for the water to enter the container and one to serve as part of the shower drainage.

Clean cut window and a look from the inside
Supply header pass-through in place.

I was able to also attach the main drainage line to the outside drainage line and set up to connect the shower drainage to the main line.

Saturday, 3/4/23, started out with nice weather and I was able to connect the water line from the pass through and run it to the pump area.  More PEX lines were run and a manifold was made for a bypass incase of pump failure.  Final attachments will need to be made.

Dave showed up just in time for the wind to pick up.  Meanwhile, I started to tie in the electrical and build a small control box with a main switch and voltmeter.  Unfortunately, Dave couldn’t stay long and after lunch I went back to more electrical work.  Meanwhile, the weather kept getting worse.  

Sunday, 3/5/23, was cold, very windy, and with scattered showers, so I packed up early and headed back to town.

Next event is coming soon. Progress and next steps to be discussed at the March 10th monthly meeting.

New plumbing feedthroughs
Voltmeter installed for checking battery health.

We are getting close to having the restroom become operational. We hope the weather continues to be favorable.

MTA launch event, 2022-12-17

by Dave Nordling, President, RRS.ORG

The RRS held our last launch event of 2022 on Saturday, December 17th. Wolfram Blume brought out the next build of the Gas Guzzler two-stage rocket. I was the pyro-op in charge and RRS member Joe Dominguez was my apprentice.

It was a flight test of Wolfram’s third rebuild of this complex system. The ramjet upper stage was empty for this flight test to demonstrate the rebuilt design would work well enough before proceeding with a fueled flight test of the ramjet.

Wolfram explains the stages and the integration
The Gas Guzzler is loaded and ready for flight.

The integration of the stages and mounting on the 1515 launch rail worked perfectly. The booster with an L-motor powered the vehicle on a stable trajectory under nearly zero wind conditions. Stage separation was clean and the drogue chute was seen deployed.

Booster stuck in the sand with the front end crushed.

The booster recovery failed to deploy and the main chute on the ramjet also failed. Both stages were lost but recovered less than 100 yards from the launch rail. The drogue chute was ripped clean and found downrange.

Wolfram has spare parts already made, but another launch may require at least another month before a new vehicle is ready. He must also study the wreckage and flight data to find the problems and how best to correct them.

Old anchors extracted by primitive but effective means
Patched holes finished.

The event was also used to fix the new horizontal mounting points. Four of the new 3/4-10 female anchors in the regular 7-by-4 pattern put in by USC RPL this year had problems. Two holes were blocked by old anchors so we spent the afternoon chipping them out. With a quart-sized plastic bucket and some small bits of gravel, the holes were patched with fresh concrete and left to cure until the next event in a month or so. The other two holes will be worked at the next event.

The event also continued the work on the restroom facility. The plumbing, pumps and electrical systems need work. The project will continue into January until its completion.

With the last hour of daylight, we started the stick welding of the missing mounting plate. Joe used the portable welding generator to get the plate in place, but multiple passes would be required to finish. We ran out of daylight before completing the job.