« Craftsmanship Competition
52.1 Scope
Scale comprises a single event open to any model rocket that is a true scale model of an existing or historical guided missile, rocket vehicle, or space vehicle, that has flown under rocket power. The purpose of this competition is to produce an accurate, flying replica of a real rocket powered vehicle that is judged for craftsmanship in construction, finish, and flight performance.
52.2 Exclusions
Prototypes of amateur rockets or missiles are specifically excluded from this competition, except when the prototype is of obvious historical significance.
52.3 Non-Flying Prototypes
Entries in Scale may model a non-flying or inert prototype if its configuration is representative of a historical vehicle configuration.
52.4 Plastic Models
Entries that qualify for Plastic Model Conversion per Rule 56 – Plastic Model Conversion, are specifically excluded from this event. Parts from commercial plastic kits may be used provided this is pointed out in the data presented with the entry for judging.
52.5 Kits
Commercially available scale model rocket kits are acceptable for entry only if accompanied by additional substantiating data other than that contained in the kit. The competitor must be responsible for ascertaining the correct scale qualities of the kit, and must present satisfactory evidence that the entry is to the correct scale.
52.6 Serial Numbered Prototype
The competitor should model one particular serial-numbered prototype (or round), except in the case where the prototype is in such extensive mass production that no single individual vehicle can be singled out for entry. However, the competitor must make every reasonable attempt to model a specific prototype, since any generalization may detract from his/her score.
52.7 Data
The competitor must supply data to substantiate his/her entry’s adherence to scale in dimension, shape, color, and paint pattern.
52.8 Stages
If the prototype is a multi-stage vehicle, the entry may be designed so that some or all of the upper stages are inoperable dummies. However, an entry of one or more of the upper stages of a multi-stage vehicle may not be entered without the operable lower stage(s) unless specific data is furnished to prove to the judges that the upper stage(s) has been flown.
52.9 Transparent Fins
Transparent fins are allowed for the purpose of stabilizing an entry. The transparent fins and their attachment must be judged for craftsmanship along with the entry.
52.10 Flight
An entry that does not make a safe, stable flight must be disqualified.  Any flight including re-flights that are missing significant component(s) (i.e.; booster pods, fins, transitions, escape towers, payload sections, nose cones), must be disqualified.  Any flight including re-fights may fly missing small surface details (i.e. non-functional lugs, antennas, landing pads/wheels, etc.), this will be scored as damage.
Models may not separate into multiple parts prior to departure from the launch guide.
52.11 Static Judging
52.11.1 Scale Data: 50 points
Points must be awarded for data that exceeds the minimum requirements; however, data will be judged on quality, not quantity. All data presented should apply to the particular prototype that is being modeled. Minimum allowable data consists of:

  • Scale factor
  • Overall length
  • Significant body diameter(s)
  • Nose cone length
  • Fin length and width (if applicable to the prototype)
  • Length of transition pieces (if applicable)
  • Color pattern (documented either in writing or by photographs)
  • One clear photograph, halftone, or photo-reproduction
  • For at least all required dimensions listed above, both the actual (prototype) dimensions and the scaled (model) dimensions presented in a table or on a drawing

Dimensional data must be from an accurate source, such as magazines, books, the prototype manufacturer’s specifications or data sheets, and so on. Dimensions for which explicit data cannot be found may be calculated by proportioning drawings or photos; dimensions obtained in this manner must be so identified in the data. Drawings prepared by the competitor to facilitate judging must be accompanied by substantiating data or drawings. Photographs from any source are acceptable. The photograph requirement may be satisfied by reproductions of pictures from books and other printed material. In addition, the competitor should make an effort to include in a table or drawing, any additional dimensions (both prototype and scaled) that he/she has tried to scale. Points may be deducted if the scale data is not pertinent to the prototype. An entry must be judged against the data presented.

52.11.2 Accuracy of Major Dimensions: 200 points
Major dimensions include those required per Rule 52.11.1 – Scale Data, as well as dimensions of sub-assemblies, location of details, location of paint pattern, and so on. At least five dimensions must be checked for accuracy. The judges must measure the model dimensions to a tolerance of +/-0.5 millimeters. Points must be deducted according to the percentage of deviation from the scale dimensions. Model features so small that they cannot be measured should appear scale-like.
52.11.3 Accuracy of Color and Markings: 100 points
The color, surface finish, and texture of the entry should conform to the data and photographs. Lettering and insignia, if applicable, should be scaled and properly reproduced. Paint patterns should be properly proportioned.
52.11.4 Appearance of Details: 50 points
Details such as antennas, rivets, cover plates, bolts, prototype imperfections, and so on that appear in the data should be present and accurately scaled.
52.11.5 Craftsmanship: 300 points
Points will be awarded for neatness, care in construction, craftsmanship of details, and quality of finish. Consideration should be given to the invisibility of body seams and wood grain, and the accurate reproduction of curved lines and edges. The finish should be free of fingerprints, brush strokes, runs, or other unintentional blemishes, and the paint pattern should be well defined.
52.11.6 Degree of Difficulty: 200 points
Points must be awarded according to the difficulty experienced by the competitor in building the model and adapting it for flight. Consideration should be given to whether the entry was built from a kit. Points should be awarded for parts and details that were individually constructed by the competitor. To facilitate judging, the competitor should point out difficult assemblies or construction problems in his/her data.
52.12 Flight Characteristics: 300 points
52.12.1 Mission: 200 points
Mission points are awarded for the entry’s appropriate and scale-like operation of the prototype during flight. Examples of such operations are staging, simulated cloud seeding, operation of electronic payload, and smoke ejection. Any such operation that does not comply with the safety standards set forth in the Sporting Code must be disqualified. The RSO is the only official who may rule on the safety of the entry’s operation.
52.12.2 General Flight: 100 points
General flight points are awarded for proper operation of the entry during flight, including launch, lack of misfires, stability, recovery, and lack of damage on landing. No consideration should be given to staging or scale-like flight characteristics, as they are covered under mission points. However, if the general flight performance of the entry is adversely affected by the failure of one or more of these aspects, general flight points may be deducted.
52.13 Damage
Damage must be judged cumulatively with each flight, assessed from the judged condition of the entry to the condition presented to the judge post-flight. Damage caused by catastrophic failure must not be counted against the entry’s flight points.
52.14 Scoring
Scale must be scored as follows: the entry’s static points added to its flight points. The competitor receiving the highest score is the winner.