Thursday, July 6, 2017

Estes Apollo Little Joe II Build, Part 32, Command Module Nose Weight

I've never seen this much nose weight in a kit before -

The command module gets 2 1/2 clay weights. The total weight for me was .61 oz.
For a better, tighter fit of the clay, just don't press it into the tip of the nose.
Preform the first 1/2 pat of clay into a cone shape. Once it is pressed into place form the second clay pat into a round doughnut. Press that in on top of the first.
The third pat goes on top of that.

Flatten out and even up the clay with the back end of a hobby knife or flat end dowel.

You want the clay to adhere well without any air gaps so it won't come loose.


  1. Hey Chris,
    1. Newsflash! Starship Nova no longer out of stock on the Estes website. It's finally available.
    2. Re: locking in the clay nose weight. I've seen recommendations for a layer of wood glue or epoxy on the base of the clay, depending on the type of plastic. On polyethylene, however, most glues will not adhere. Instructions I've read in this case say to use a screw or dowel through the nose cone just under the clay, and then epoxy. Then grind the screw head or dowel flush with the outside of the nose cone. I prefer to use expanding polyurethane foam in a spray can to fill the void and lock in the weight. Fast and easy, no drilling or grinding. This is for MPR rockets, might not be necessary for LPR birds. Cheers!

    1. Hi BAR,
      I saw where the Starship Nova is now available.
      In my low power experience I haven't had clay weight come loose. When I was doing the Madcow Bomarc instructions I found that the original Gorilla Glue worked well keeping the lead weight BBs in the nose cone. Squirt it in over the BBs and add a little water. I expands a bit but won't fill the entire nose cone.
      The clay I've been using in LPR has worked fine.

  2. Gorilla glue would certainly work to lock in nose weight, but I'm like BAR. Expanding polyurethane foam is the way to go, if you have it. That stuff will stick to anything, especially the shirt you're wearing when a pour goes wrong.

    1. Hi Metal,
      I haven't used expanding poly foam in LPR builds but I can see where it could come in handy on larger models. I have also ruined a few nice shirts, especially with CA glue drips!