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REV 2.4 - Tue Aug 17 08:39:06 2010

OOP
Quest Aerospace
Aries
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SPECS: 24" x 1.18" - 2.64 oz
ROCKSIM FILE: MISSING - please submit here
SpaceCAD FILE: MISSING - please submit here
REC'D MOTORS: B6-4, C6-3, C6-5

Rating
(by Dennis McClain-Furmanski - 09/09/04) Quest Aries

Brief:
Single stage, 14" chute realistic scale-like easy to build LPR kit

Construction:
The kit includes:

  • 3 tubes
  • 4 plastic snap in fins
  • 2 piece fin can
  • 1 launch lug
  • 1 chute kit with elastic shock cord
  • 2 plastic transitions
  • 1 plastic nose

While looking for an old MPC Nike Smoke, I was told that Quest had bought the molds and re-released it. During my quest, I happened to run across the Aries. I'm glad I did. Despite the fact that this is a beginner's kit with plastic snap-together pieces, it is really designed remarkably well and is a very good looker too.

The plastic fin can incorporates a thrust ring (tab) and the two pieces snap together. The four molded plastic fins fit into slots in the can and slide down to lock into place. For a $10 kit, this is some marvelous little engineering--it's would be called a cool hack in computers. Except for this very nice but unique fin can design, all the building was extremely easy and the well done instructions wouldn't be necessary except for the complete beginner.

The transitions and nose are molded to look like a present day launch vehicle, I suspect an Ariane (hence the name Aries). It comes with some extra plastic parts (possibly surplus from other kits) that can be glued on as you wish to dress it up, which I did. It just looks...neat.

For a beginner with only the most common tools and materials, this is a 1 hour build. I did it in 15 minutes.

Finishing:
The tubes come pre-coated with white paper. The only finishing involved is in putting on the vinyl decals. Painting is possible, but I can't see how that'd improve it much.

Construction Rating: 5 out of 5

Flight:
B and C motors are recommended. The 14" chute is hard to pack properly, so I used a 10" mylar and cellulose wadding. I flew twice on B6-4s and twice on C5-3s. All flights were very good looking and flawless.

The motor retainer is another part of the exceptional design. A twist-in ring has tabs that fit into two slots. You twist it 90 degrees to lock it. To change motors you twist, pull the motor, put in another, and put the ring back in. We're talking 15 seconds here and positive motor retention without masking tape.

Recovery:
The plastic fins stand up well to landings. The shock cord is long enough that "Estes dents" are unlikely. I've detected no ejection burning or other damage after 4 flights.

Flight Rating: 5 out of 5

Summary:
Clearly, if as a builder of larger and more complex models I had been getting jaded, this model cured me. I remain very impressed with the thought that went into the design of this little bird and still it comes out for less than $10. I like its looks and enjoy flying it, even when those around me are flying MPR/HPR.

Overall Rating: 5 out of 5

[Submit your Opinion]

GUEST's OPINION:
10/06 - "This rocket is indeed a great buy, being very easy to put together and with nice flowing lines to the rocket. This rocket has been a consistent performer within my fleet and flies beautifully once launched. If possible, substitute the stock Quest chute (which is of absolutely lousy quality) for a better-quality one of which I recommend an Apogee chute. Otherwise the Aries is a truly exceptional semi-scale rocket with its Ariane over-tones." (P.D.)

[Enter Rocket Specific Tip]

SPECIFIC ROCKET TIP:
04/07 - "The payload compartment is big enough to hold a small flashlight aimed into the underside of the nose cone - which will make it a great night flier too! The nose cone seemed a tight fit into the upper tube, so I did not glue or tape it in place, but it came off during descent. Fortunately I was able to find it, but will tape it in place for future flights. I agree with all the reviewer's comments, including the one about using an alternate chute." (D.E. )

SPECIFIC ROCKET TIP:
10/06 - "As with all the Quest quick-kits, once CA-glued make sure the fins are pushed all the way up the fin slots until they are heard to click into place. Failure to do so will result in fins being out of alignment." (P.D. )

[Enter Flight Log]
Date Name Motor Ejection/
Altitude
Wind Notes
08-27-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - NC Down 0-5 mph winds Event: Albert Park Lake (AUSTRALIA)
- Maiden flight, beautiful to watch. Straightforward descent with no dramas but I am unhappy with the poor quality of the Quest-supplied parachute.
08-27-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-2 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds Event: Albert Park Lake (AUSTRALIA)
- Drag-racing with a scratch-build rocket of Andrew Scott's. The Aries descended and landed almost next to the launching pad .... standing upright on its fins!!!
09-12-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds - Straightforward launch, no dramas. Straightforward descent though rocket corkscrewed slightly on its way down. Two small tears in parachute evident when recovered but no further damage, Quest chutes definitely SUCK!!!
09-17-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - Perfect Calm - Nice easy launch, great to watch. Upon ejection the parachute didn't fully deploy, rocket descended horizontally to land in soft grass. Parachute had partially fused, bodytube had small dent at the top which I then straightened out.
09-17-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - Perfect Calm - Another nice launch, parachute this time properly deployed. Upon recovery another small dent at the top of the bodytube again evident, will fix.
10-15-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - NC Down 0-5 mph winds - Nice easy launch, great to watch. Quest parachute didn't fully deploy upon ejection, rocket landed in soft grass horizontally. No damage, may swap chute for an Apogee chute for future launches.
10-22-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - NC Down 5-10 mph winds Event: Albert Park Lake (AUSTRALIA)
- Easy textbook launch. Parachute only partially deployed upon ejection, rocket landed harder than usual but no damage.
10-29-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - NC Down 0-5 mph winds - Great launch but an over-healthy ejection charge caused the new Apogee chute to fuse in several spots. Rocket descended with chute only partially deployed, no damage.
11-05-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU C6-3 Just Past (1-2sec) 5-10 mph winds Event: Dandenong Wetlands (AUSTRALIA)
- A great launch though the rocket did weathercock badly in flight. No recovery dramas, no damage.
12-23-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds - A great launch with slight weathercocking in flight, no recovery dramas and no damage.
12-28-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU B6-4 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds - Great launch, rocket weathercocked slightly on its way up. Rocket landed 75 metres away in soft grass.
12-31-2006 Peter Davidson Est SU C6-3 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds Event: End Of 2006
- Very nice flight, great to watch. Big wind gust upon recovery caused rocket to land 100 metres away on a nearby road, no damage.
01-13-2007 Peter Davidson Est SU C6-3 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds - Quite a low flight as the rocket weathercocked severely due to the wind. One shroud line detached from the snap swivel upon recovery, rocket came down fast and landed quite hard on dried ground. No damage.
04-01-2007 Peter Davidson Est SU C6-5 Just Past (1-2sec) Calm - Very nice flight, rocket boosting off the pad arrow-straight. Rocket descended quite fast with an 18' chute with spillhole, no damage.
04-15-2007 Peter Davidson Est SU C6-3 Just Before 0-5 mph winds Event: Dandenong Wetlands (AUSTRALIA)
- Great flight with rocket boosting off the pad arrow-straight. Ejection occured a tad early, recovery nonetheless faultless. No damage.
11-11-2007 Peter Davidson Est SU C6-5 Just Past (1-2sec) Calm Event: Dandenong Wetlands (AUSTRALIA)
- Very nice flight, straight boost upon motor ignition. Textbook recovery, no damage.
04-21-2007 Dan Eastwood Est SU B6-4 Apogee - Perfect 0-5 mph winds Event: Spring Fling @ JCC
- Maiden Flight, Disappointing altitude seemed only 150-200 feet on B6-4. Will try C6-5 next. No wind cock, very stable flight. Ejected Quest chute perfectly, protected w/ Nomex paper, yet chute did not open. Landed undamaged on soft grass.
08-26-2008 Matt Gillard Est SU B4-4 Apogee - Perfect 5-10 mph winds - good clean flight. problems with parachute deployment.
02-16-2009 Matt Gillard Est SU A8-3 Late (2-3sec) 0-5 mph winds Flight Picture - A is too weak for this rocket.
02-21-2009 Matt Gillard Est SU C6-5 Apogee - NC Down 0-5 mph winds - good straight flight.
03-07-2009 Matt Gillard Est SU B4-4 Just Past (1-2sec) 10+ mph winds - good flight, hard landing in the wind, no damage.
   

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