5 Considerations When Choosing a Rocket
Model rockets have been a popular hobby for decades, providing excitement and challenge for people of all ages. However, if you are new to the hobby, Estes is a great brand offering a wide range of high-quality rockets for every skill level. In this article, we'll walk you through the key factors to consider when selecting your first Estes rocket to help you decide.
1. Skill Level
Estes categorizes its rockets into different skill levels, from beginner to master. It's important to choose a rocket that matches your current skill level to prevent frustration and ensure a successful launch. The Rocket Science Starter Set is perfect for those just starting, with all the necessary components to build and launch a successful rocket. The Astrocam Starter Set is great for those interested in capturing aerial photography, as it includes a camera that can be mounted on the rocket. Finally, the Destination Mars Colonizer Starter Set is a unique option, allowing beginners to experience launching a rocket to "colonize" Mars.
Estes offers many fantastic beginner-sized options. The Rocket Science Starter Set includes a small, easy-to-handle rocket and everything else you need in one beginner-friendly kit. The compact and lightweight Star Hopper is another great choice that's easy to assemble and launch and comes in a classic rocket design. Another good choice is the Chiller, which is small, easy to handle, and offers a fun, eye-catching aesthetic. Lastly, the Majestic is larger than the other options listed here but is still an excellent choice for beginners looking for a challenge. Easy to assemble with a pre-assembled recovery system, this rocket is perfect for those who want to dive into the hobby with a more complex and sophisticated rocket.
3. Recovery System
When selecting your first Estes rocket, there are three main recovery systems: parachute, streamer, and glide. Parachute recovery is the simplest and most cost-effective option but is limited in terms of altitude. Streamer recovery is lightweight and can reach higher heights but could be more reliable. Glide recovery is more efficient and can reach higher altitudes, but it is more complex and requires more advanced building skills. When deciding on a recovery system, consider the desired altitude and skill level in building and designing rockets.
Estes rockets range from under $10 to over $100. Consider your budget when choosing a rocket, especially since some kits require additional equipment. For example, you will also need a launch controller, engines, and recovery wadding with the Chiller. The Tandem-X Launch Set comes with a launch controller and still needs engines and recovery wadding. The Athena is a popular Ready to Fly rocket under $20 that requires a launch controller, engines, and recovery wadding.
Estes offers a wide variety of designs, including traditional rockets, spaceships, and science-fiction-inspired models. Choose a design that appeals to you and fits your interests. Choose a design that appeals to you and fits your interests. The Der Red Max is a fan favorite if you're looking for a bold and visually striking design.
To wrap it up, when choosing your first Estes rocket, consider where you're at with your skill level, what size would be the best fit, which recovery system you prefer, your budget, and what design catches your eye. Remember, this is just the beginning of your rocketry journey, and Estes has many options to help you grow and achieve your goals.