For those that have
followed the site for a while, you know that I enjoy
rockets (rockets with 10:1 length:width ration or less). I have built and flown
a lot of "" rockets. Here is a comparison of
versions. The Quest Full Moon is also a "stubby" rocket
standing 9.125" tall and being 1.57" body tube. This is a 5.8:1
ratio. For comparison, the Estes Fat Boy is 4.9:1 while the Estes Big Daddy is
The Full Moon is deemed a Skill Level 1 Kit for
beginner modelers. It is a fairly straightforward, 3-fins and a nose cone
(3FNC) rocket. It uses Quest-typical construction techniques and can be built
The rocket includes a 6" white paper
body tube, a plastic nose cone, 3 die-cut balsa fins, a motor mount (18mm) with
thrust ring and retainer hook, a recovery system made up of a Kevlar
shock tether, elastic shock cord and a 14" plastic parachute. These along
with a single peel-n-stick decal and a launch lug make up the rocket.
The instructions are printed on 6 pages of
8½ x 11" paper. They are typical Quest instructions being well
illustrated and clear. They would ensure that a builder of any level, but
specifically beginners, would have a successful build. I like that the
instructions also include a 4" ruler printed on the front. In addition,
there is a fin marking guide that is cut out of the front of the
Since the built of this 3FNC rocket is so
straightforward, I'm only going to outline a couple of areas of concern and
First, I spent a bit of time looking for my 4th fin!
You see from the picture, how one would believe that a 4th fin should be
included. The rocket only has 3 fins, so don't spend any time looking!
I was surprised at the fit of the thrust ring
into the motor mount tube. It was very loose. It should be a bit loose since
shock tether is supposed to be tied to it. But even after this was done, it was
loose. I allowed the space to be filled with glue.
Quest seemed to have changed their motor
mount a bit on this rocket. We are all familiar with cutting a small slot in
the motor tube, right below the thrust ring to install the motor hook.
Not this time. This
motor hook is longer and the upper bend goes above the thrust ring and
wraps around it. This would solve the loose thrust ring problem! It is a good
idea, since that thrust ring will be taking the shock of the ejection since the
is tied to it.
Other than those things, the build was easy.
The instructions guide you through making fin fillets, sealing your balsa fins,
painting, and applying the decal to finish the rocket. There are also
instructions for the parachute assembly, which involves applying Gripper
Fasteners to the parachute and tieing on the shroud lines.
I decided to paint my Full Moon, Lime
Green. I wanted to be able to see it! I didn't spend a lot of time smoothing
the fins or hiding the spirals, but the final look is good. After applying the
decal I did clear coat the rocket.
Overall, for CONSTRUCTION I
would rate this kit
½ points. It is a straightforward build. Not much else to
Quest recommends the A6-4 (first flight),
B6-4 or the C6-5.
Quest also indicates that the weight of the
Full Moon is 1.06 ounces. Mine weighed in at 1.6 ounces.
Lastly, Quest indicates flights to 900 feet.
On a C6-5, mine simmed to 933 feet.
My first flight was on an A8-3. It was stable
and fun to watch. The 14" parachute for this light rocket carried it for a
bit (even with the A8-3 altitude). From this test flight, I determined that if
I wanted to keep this rocket, the parachute must go.
After adding a 24"x1" Lime Green
streamer (tree marking strip from the hardware store) I was ready to fly it
again. So I loaded a B6-4. Another stable flight. The 4 second delay would have
been better at 5 seconds, but for a small rocket, no issues. The streamer made
it easy to follow and there was no damage on the landing.
The last flight for the day was on a C6-5. It
went way up there and I noticed it flying straight but with a spin all the way
up. Again, with the Lime Green and long Lime Green streamer, it was easily
tracked and recovered.
The Quest Kevlar
and elastic recovery system is excellent. Over the years, this system seems to
be better than the typical 3-fold paper and elastic system for other rockets
that I have flown.
For FLIGHT/RECOVERY, I would
rate this rocket
points. The parachute is too big for this rocket. Quest would do well
to include a long streamer. Otherwise, it is a solid flying bird.
I give the rocket an OVERALL rating of
½ points. Being a "stubby" rocket drew me to purchase
it. It looks good and flies good, so other than preference for recovery
(wanting not to loose it), the rocket is solid.
(Contributed - by Stan Horowitz)
This is a fine sport flier! It has a nice size body tube that lets you load up
the parachute with ease! Every thing in the kit was in good condition in the
package. The die-cut balsa fins are of good quality & a fine grain. The
plastic nose cone is like most Quest/Estes types & takes paint well. I like
the Quest way of mounting the shock cord with kevlar string to the motor
mount(better than the Estes way!). The assembly is easy on this skill level 1
kit. I took my time & it went together fast. I used white glue & it
worked out fine. The instructions are clear & easy to follow. After
construction, the fins seem strong for the rocket they're on. The finishing was
easy- standard stuff, I used 3 coats of sanding sealer to get a nice surface on
the fins for painting. I painted the nose cone by its self & the same for
the body tube. I used the colors Quest had on the enclosed sheet that came with
the kit; Red for the body & White for the nose cone. Looks sharp! The
parachute is a soft plastic type like an Estes (not hard like the older Quest
types). The shroud lines seem better than they used to be.
I took the rocket to my brother's field (he has big open land for a back
yard!). The first flight was with an Estes A8-3 since I dont have any Quest
engines. It went up nice & staright in a low wind & went up about 100
feet or so, the parachute came out fine & a good landing. The second flight
was with an Estes B4-4 that I had & man it went up! The chute came out
& it landed a few yards from the pad. An all around fine rocket kit for
anyone. Great to see where the wind is going before launching a larger rocket!
As I stated, the kit uses a standard Estes type body tube with a plastic nose
cone & die-cut balsa fins. It has three fins & standard low power
engine mounting items.
There is nothing special
about the components but they are all fine for this type of kit. The
instructions are clear & I see no problem for any one following them. Its
also easy to build this kit. I think it's a rather solid kit for the low price.
I would say no cons in construction.
Finishing is straight foward, no special things to get in the way. I used
sanding sealer on the fins for a nice finish & local discount paint.. You
get one press on decal for one fin that has the kit name. I guess for the low
price you should not think you will get a big water slide sheet like 20 years
ago(oh-well!). I do think the finished kit looks real sharp!
out of 5
The flights were fine. I used the Estes A8-3 for the first flight & it went
up only about 100 feet. The second flight with an Estes B4-4 was great & it
went up real nice! I would say there were no cons on flight. The rocket came
back in fine shape on the grass field here. I used about 3 1/2 sheets of
wadding in it. This rocket flies straight up here.
The 14 inch plastic parachute is red & yellow & is easy to fit into the
wide body tube. I have no cons on the recovery.
out of 5
I would say that Quest did a good job on this kit. I enjoyed it & think it
was a better quality that the last Quest kit I had put together a few years
back. Pretty good for the year 2003 (I hope they don't read this & mess it
up!). I think I found a low price kit with no cons! Wow! It doesn't happen too
out of 5
(Contributed - by Chan Stevens - 09/25/05)
A miniaturized version of the Big Betty, this little guy is a quick, easy build
and reliable flyer.
The parts list includes:
- Plastic nose cone
- BT-60 (equiv.) body tube
- 3 Laser-cut balsa fins
- Centering rings
- 18mm motor tube
- Metal motor hook
- Thrust ring
- 14" plastic chute
- 1/8" launch lug
- Peel n stick decal
This was accurately described as a skill level 1 kit, so the construction is
fairly simple and straightforward. The instructions are about 3 pages and
clearly written and illustrated.
The motor mount assembly is the typical 18mm tube, thrust ring, and motor
hook. It also uses a couple of centering rings to slip into the BT-60 body
tube. Given the large body tube, there are obvious possibilities to
this to 24mm, and I'm sure a few fliers have already done this.
and elastic shock cord combo is anchored to the motor mount. This is a great
feature for a mass market kit, both rugged and durable.
The body tube needs to be marked using a wraparound guide for the standard
3-fin and lug arrangement. It's a good idea to scuff the body tube first with
120 grit sandpaper to provide a better bonding surface for the fins. Once the
fins are tacked on, the rather long launch lug is glued on, essentially
completing the rocket construction.
The standard color scheme on this is a simple paint job and is decent looking.
The fins and body are a gloss red, and the nose cone is a gloss white. This
doesn't even require masking, assuming you hold off on attaching the nose cone
until after it's painted.
I started off with a couple coats of white primer, then followed up with
Krylon red and white. After allowing a day to dry, I then applied the peel n
stick "Full Moon" decal, which provides a nice break to the
out of 5
The recommended motors for this are the common mid-delay A through C motors.
(Quest motors would be A6-4, B6-4, and C6-5. Estes motors would go with A8-3
instead of A6-4).
For the maiden flight, I started low since it would be flying in 10 mph
conditions and loaded an A8-3 in it. It flew perfectly straight without any
weathercock, but it did drift downwind a bit on the way up. Apogee was right on
The 14" chute uses shroud lines attached to holes reinforced with paper
rings. This is a pretty flimsy approach and I broke loose one shroud line as a
result. I would prefer tape disk retention instead, which is less likely to
tear through the chute.
The chute did slow it down enough and recovery was fine.
out of 5
PROs: simple build, versatile motor range, and flies well.
CONs: flimsy shroud line attachment.
This is a nice little kit worth picking up, especially if you can grab one
at one of those half-off sales.
out of 5