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I recently was awarded my NARTREK gold from the NAR.  The NARTREK program is  a self-paced program designed to improve your knowledge and skill in rocketry step by step.  You can read more about it here.

The program is a lot of fun.  I heard from some people that they thought it was for kids, but I would say that it is far from it. 

The progression from Bronze to Silver to Gold seems easy, but some of the steps can be a challenge.  The main thing is that you really do not know which one will be your challenge until you do it.

 The Bronze has 4 steps:

  • Perform a 60-second parachute duration flight with a kit model.
  • Perform a 30-second streamer duration flight with a kit model.
  • Perform a two-staged flight with a kit model.
  • Perform a large model flight (D motor or above) with a kit model.

My rockets for the Bronze can be seen here. 

The Silver has 4 steps as well:

  • Build and fly a payload rocket.
  • Build and fly a 3 motor cluster.
  • Perform a 30 second boost glider flight.
  • Build and fly a scale model.

My Silver level rockets are seen here:

The hardest one for me in the Bronze turned out to the 60 second parachute duration.  It took a few tries and I barely made it.  I thought I would have trouble with the 30 second duration of a boost glider in the Silver level, but the Edmonds Deltie B suprised me with a 45 second flight.

The gold level was fun.  I had to design and fly my own design.  I chose something a little different.  My daughter called it “Colossus” and the name stuck.  The hardest part is doing all of the calculations in Rocksim and writing up a report on your design and flight.  I procrastinated for several months after my flight before sending in the report.

Here is a pic of the unpainted “Colossus”.


I now can go on to “Advanced”.  When things slow down in a couple of months at work, I may start on that.

Think about going for NARTREK gold.  It is a lot of fun and you might learn something as well.

Marty Wiggins

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