What is Model Rocketry?
Model rocketry was developed during the “space race” era as an alternative to the amateur rocket activity — involving metallic airframes and the mixing of dangerous propellants — that was responsible for injuring and even killing numerous young scientific experimenters.
How to Build a Model Rocket.
NAR volunteers have produced nine pages of excellent tutorial material on how to build a model rocket and a 45-minute instructional video for rocketeers of all ages on all the steps and techniques involved in building and flying a model rocket. This instructional video has been divided into six short segments of 4 – 9 minutes in duration and posted online by the NAR’s TARC partners, the Aerospace Industries Association on their YouTube site. The six segments are:
Part 1: How Model Rockets Work
Part 2: Components of a Rocket
Part 3: Construction
Part 4: Finishing the Rocket’s Fins
Part 5: Assembling the Rocket
Part 6: Painting the Completed Rocket
Model rockets are constructed of much safer materials — such as cardboard, plastic, and balsa wood — and are fueled by single-use rocket motors manufactured by professional businesses. These rockets may be flown over and over simply by replacing the used motor with a fresh one. They typically contain a parachute, streamer, or other recovery device that allows them to land gently for later reflight. The modeler need never mix, pack, or work with explosives or propellants.
Today, model rocket kits and motors can be purchased in almost every hobby shop and toy store. Kits are designed for all ages and all levels of challenge, from simple starter kits to complicated scale models. Motor power ranges from “1/4A” (the smallest) to “G” — enough power to lift a six-foot model and a hefty payload!
Model rockets must be flown in compliance with the Model Rocket Safety Code.
What is the NAR?
How many ways can you have fun with rockets? The NAR is all about having fun and learning more with and about model rockets. We are the oldest and largest sport rocketry organization in the world. Since 1957, over 80,000 serious sport rocket modelers have joined the NAR to take advantage of the fun and excitement of organized rocketry. Listed below are just a few of the benefits of becoming a NAR member:
Read Sport Rocketry Magazine
Sport Rocketry is a bi-monthly magazine jam-packed with building tips, plans, product reviews, technical information, space science features, interviews, and reports on launches and other rocketry activities from all over the country. (Check our our free online sample issue!)
Visit NAR Organized Rocket Launches
NAR members and Sections host hundreds of launches each year — both sport launches and competitions — these launches range from the local and regional level to national events. Check out our Online Launch Windows calendar listing some of the launches coming up in the next few months.
Connect With Local Clubs
Rocketry is more fun when you get together with fellow flyers in a NAR Section near you. Sections participate in building sessions, monthly meetings, launches, and more! Your sport rocket designing, building, and flying is always more fun when you have rocket flying friends joining you. If you’d like to have a club closer to you, we’ll even show you how to start a new one!
Learn New Rocket Techniques with NARTREK
When you join the NARTREK (National Association of Rocketry Training Rocketeers for Experience and Knowledge) program, you fly increasingly more complex rockets through three levels. As each level is finished, you receive an Achievement Certificate and a jacket patch certifying your accomplishment. You are under no time limit. You progress at your own pace. You can even “try it before you buy it” by downloading the Bronze Level Packet now, and following the instructions on the first page!
Fly Model Rocket Contests
Since 1959, sanctioned NAR model rocket competition has evolved into a proven method for challenging the individual to improve craftsmanship and flying skills. It is an activity that emphasizes patience, skill, and sportsmanship. Any NAR member can participate in NAR sanctioned competition. The U.S. Model Rocket Sporting Code , or “Pink Book,” is the official rulebook for conducting and participating in NAR sanctioned competition. NAR members can design and build model rockets for over 25 different competition events. Official US Records can be set in many of these events. The NAR has an archive of competition rocket plans suitable for many contest events and skill levels.
Your model rocket experience will “lift off” as soon as you become a member of the National Association of Rocketry!