The final step in building my Level 3 rocket was installing everything into the airframe. The airframe is a cardboard tube (no fiberglass or carbon fiber reinforcement). The decision was made to only use cardboard since the vehicle would remain subsonic, and no composite reinforcement would keep the weight down and weight distribution favorable. The airframe consumed two LOC 5.38″ (OD 5.5″) cardboard tubes. A whole tube went to the booster section. The second tube went to the two parachute bays and two switch bands. Three fin slots were cut into the booster airframe tube (painstakingly and with an Exacto knife–blood, sweat, and tears all contributed to the building of this fantastic machine!) from the aft of the airframe to the top of the fin slot.
After a quick dry fit, I drilled holes for the two 1515 rail buttons (courtesy of Dog House Rocketry). The rail buttons are held in place by two expanding rubber well nuts.
The aft rail button is 3 inches from the aft of the airframe. The forward rail button is 5 inches ahead of the CP, or 35 inches from the aft of the airframe, or 6 inches behind the nominal CG. (The nominal modeled CG was at the edge of the booster coupler and there were also spatial constraints imposed by the forward centering ring.)
In honor of my alma mater Georgia Tech, the rocket got a white and gold paint job. Now it’s time for the Yellow Jacket to take to the skies at AirFest 22 in Argonia, KS! I hope to do a first flight on an L motor (possibly a CTI L1395 I got from Chris’ Rocket Supplies).