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Steerable parachute recovery?

Old 04-30-2008, 11:12 AM
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Default Steerable parachute recovery?

Me and my son go out and shoot small rockets at the local park sometimes. Mostly just A's,B's and C's. The biggest problem we have is recovery. If the wind isn't dead calm a parachute can float the high flyers pretty far and am afraid they might go into a local housing complex. I was wondering if anyone has set up a steerable parachute system, like the skydiver setups, but on a rocket. It would be cool to be able to shoot a rocket off then steer the rocket back down to your feet. Wanting something inexpensive. Not looking to spend $300 for a steerable recovery system. Any ideas?

Old 04-30-2008, 11:20 AM
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Default RE: Steerable parachute recovery?

they make rc paragliders, maybe you could incorporate something into it. do a google search on it or maybe here on rcu.
Old 04-30-2008, 01:59 PM
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Default RE: Steerable parachute recovery?

I would think you could do some interesting things with a few sail winch servos.
Old 05-01-2008, 12:08 PM
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Default RE: Steerable parachute recovery?

The heavy weight of the servo /s battery receiver and the extra weight of the more complex parachute with more complex line systems would be a serious factor to calculate and means its more likely to work well for largest rockets like d,e,f. but mayby c might coope if you got the right weight solutions

What is more likely to work is the single skin triangle shape with the open back and not do a double skin rectangle wing shape

I wouldn't look too much at model solutions but instead look at full size parachute solutions or the kite surfing foils and see if you can do more simplex versions of the same

Remember a lot of complex parachute solutions are made to achieve glide ratios of 4:1 and for your purposes you want less than 2:1 even 1:1 would do so you can simplify the plan a lot more than full scale solutions

you need to be looking to use RC equipment receivers batteries servos with very light weight from indoor fly models

Servos of 5grams and receiver from 2.4ghz of 5 grams and real minimum 2s lipo battery that runs for few minutes of 50mha or less might keep RC gears weight below 1 onze

This minimum power RC gear would struggle to control a large chute so it would require only deflecting controls a small bit and make turns a slow affair at best

The parachutes weight might easily double and increase in size by 25 to 50%
The fastest speed forward that a small simplex parachute could expect to do against the wind would be 3 to 5mph with the most complex types making max 10mph

So the windy days better to fire the rocket more into the wind and have it open up upwind and then try to steer it back downwind

Keep us posted if you try it out

Old 05-05-2008, 11:55 AM
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Default RE: Steerable parachute recovery?

I fly rockets with the 4H kids, and the parachute does drift into the woods sometimes. We found a long streamer of thin cloth or plastic does not drift, but does slow it down for recovery.
Old 05-06-2008, 07:57 PM
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Default RE: Steerable parachute recovery?

A strip cut from a sheet of crepe paper makes a great recovery streamer , the rough crinkled surface helps the streamer to flutter slowing decent. A 1"-2" streamer the full length of the sheet/roll of crepe works well , if a slower decent is required use 2 or more streamers side by side.
Old 05-22-2008, 10:20 AM
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Default RE: Steerable parachute recovery?

You can buy pre-crimped crepe and mylar streamer material at many arts/crafts supply stores, and sometimes at Big Lots and other "Clearance"-type stores. The crimping adds a lot to the drag of the streamer, and helps slow the descent...........

The Doctor

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