Inspector Gadget

Length:76"Status:Crashed / 2 flights
Motor Mount:54mmBuild Dates:2004-06-19 to 2005-07-02

This rocket was built almost as an afterthought. A mailing tube, some G10, a little fiberglass, and a nose cone later, Inspector Gadget was born. I had always wanted a 3" rocket for 54mm motors, and the cheap, strong 3" mailing tubes available at Staples seemed to be the perfect starting place for a rocket. This rocket was great to have around. It was a great heavy-weather flyer, and the strong construction meant it held up to some pretty fast motors. After its untimely death, it was effectively replaced by Little Dragon, which is of the same form factor and construction.


Event: Perchlorathon March 2009

Date: March 15th, 2009

Motor: PPL K700

By the time I was finished prepping, the breeze had calmed to the point where I could fly. I put Inspector Gadget on the pad, hooked up the clips, armed the ARTS, checked for aircraft, and my friend Chris hit the button. The fast blue K700 lit up quick and gave Inspector Gadget a quick ride up to 6000 feet or so. After motor burnout, I flipped the CSI receiver on and listened to the happy beeps from the transmitter. Then, slowly, they began to increase in pitch until suddenly: beep---beep---beep---beep--------- silence. Oops. From the impact crater, we retrieved the fins, the tubular Kevlar shock cord, the aft rail button, two payload section attachment screws, the nozzle and bulkhead from the motor, and enough motor case to make a 54/1050. Post-mortem indicated that the battery holder failed under the acceleration loading; that's what I get for using cheap zip ties. But, on the upside, Frank Kosdon personally excavated my rocket for me. How many people can say that?!

Event: ROC August 2004

Date: August 14th, 2004

Motor: AT J275

Apogee: 6,225 ft

Well, after the nice first flight, I really wanted to get Inspector Gadget in the air again. As with all my other projects, various conditions popped up that prevented this from happening. I finally resolved to fly IG again at the August 2004 launch, whether the weather was good or not (wow, that sounds kinda weird). I loaded it up the night before with the ARTS (hoping for a flawless performance to clear its name) and a J275W. We headed out to the range early, and after putting up the Quasar, I loaded IG onto the rail. I walked back, Rick O'Neill counted down, and hit the button. IG took a moment to pressurize, then instantly lifted off the rail arrow-straight, heading for the sky. After burnout, I completely lost track of the (relatively thin) tracking smoke against the cloudy sky. We all heard a pop, indicating that I either had a drogue chute or I had kicked the casing and the vehicle was coming in ballistic. A quick glance out to the range confirmed that it was the former of the two -- my dad was tracking the bird with binoculars, and was still looking up after a long while. Eventually, IG returned to 777 feet (I thought it was a funny number when I programmed the ARTS... go figure) and deployed the SkyAngle main chute right on time. Beautiful flight and recovery, just a short distance away. I can't wait to try it with a J415!

I like to design, build, and fly rockets. PostFlight started as a project to help me keep track of them. Now I've opened it up so you can follow along, too.
I fly with:
Indiana Rocketry, Inc. MDRA
Hey! What are you doing down here? The rocket stuff (yea, it's © 2018 David Reese) is up there!