Vandenberg Launch Pad
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The Vandenberg launch pad is a sturdy launch pad made of materials you can replace at the hardware store or print yourself on a 3D printer. The main structure is simply 3/4 inch PVC pipe and fittings, and a 3D printable launch rod and blast deflector mount. Add to that a steel blast plate and launch rod, and an ingenious system to store the launch rod inside the PVC legs, and you have a quality launch pad for any Class 1 rocket--up to 1,500 grams (3.3 lbs).
Included with the launch pad:
- 3 sturdy PVC legs, plus fittings that allow legs to double as a storage case for the launch rod
- Choice of 3 foot long 1/8 inch or 3/16 inch launch rods or 4 foot long 1/4 inch launch rod
- Choice of 1/32 inch or 1/16 inch thick, 5 inch wide steel blast deflector
- Launch rod mount and blast deflector mount to fit selected launch rods launch rods
Low power rockets flying up to C power motors likely require a 1/8 inch launch rod. Slightly larger kits, typically flying on D or E motors, usually need a 3/16 inch launch rod. And mid power kits flying F and G motors usually need a 1/4 inch launch rod. Mid power kits should use the 16 gauge (1/16 inch thick) Blast Deflector Plate. Smaller rockets can use the 20 gauge (1/32 inch) Blast Deflector Plate.
For large groups of fliers--school groups, scout unites, 4H groups, or park district programs, consider the Cape Canaveral Launch Pad. Its sophisticated construction and tight integration with the Houston Launch Controller make it ideal for larger launches.
What's in a Name?
Rocketry Works tradition holds that we name our launch pads after famous launch ranges, as an homage to their history and service. Rocketry Works' Vandenberg launch pad is named after Vandenberg Air Force Base near Lompoc, CA--the preeminent launch facility on the west coast. Vandenberg AFB is a Departmetn of Defence space and missile testing facility, responsible for putting satellites into polar orbit. SpaceX also leases facilities from the air force base.
Minuteman 3 Missile Launch from Vandenberg AFB, near Lompoc, CA