Building the Journeyman IV
And some history of the "ARO"

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Journeyman IV
Journeyman IV parts
About two months after the Journeyman III landed in the tree, I found its body at the base of the tree, suspended horizontally between two branches. The nosecone and parachute remained in the top of the tree. Amazingly, it looked fine, but upon closer inspection I saw the body tube now had a slight curve to it, like a banana.

I took it home and cut the fins and launching lugs off. Since I had the set of fins I decided to make a Journeyman IV, but with a bigger engine.

In the photo above all the parts have been collected. The small white tube is for a 29mm engine holder. Above it is a thick heavy tube from (I think) wrapping paper. The green tape is to shim it up so it fits into the BT-60 tube above it. This makes a long tube with the heavy tube taking the brunt of the heat. The centering rings are made from a cracker box and are "sandwiches" of cracker box and carpenters glue. The large tube is a BT-80

Journeyman IV fins
The fins after they were sanded smooth. The red stuff is Bondo glazing putty, used to fill in the dents and dings.
Journeyman IV shroud
The paper shroud needed something to attach to on the bottom, so I came up with this.
Journeyman IV and Alpha
The assembled Journeyman IV next to an Estes Alpha.

Journeyman IV
I broke with tradition and made this one metallic blue. It's easier to see after it lands.
Journeyman IV fins
Journeyman IV engine
The fins turned out very nice. On the right is an Estes 29mm E16 engine loaded into the rocket.

Mike Simpson and the Journeyman IV
Yours truly, at the PARA520 rocket club launch on June 25, 2023.
(The only way I can get my picture on the Internet is to post one myself.)

Journeyman IV liftoff
Journeyman IV
Lifting off on an E16-4
Journeyman IV flight
A perfect flight. It climbed until it was just a speck in the sky.
Journeyman IV recovery
Coming down....
Journeyman IV landed
Found in the field. You can see how the blue color makes it easier to spot than the green color of the others.
October 01, 2023. Launched again with an E16-4
October 28, 2023. Launched once again with an Estes E-16-4.

Rocket Launcher
More ARO history. This is the rocket launcher from 1968, used to launch the original Journeyman. Inside the big gray box was an old car battery. We had to carry this to the launch site, Simon's Recreation Center, five blocks away. It was so heavy that at one time we attached wheels to it and we pulled it to the site with a rope. However, it still had to be carried across the field, and with the wheels it was even heavier.

If any of us had any money (and common sense) we would have put four "D" batteries in there and reduced the weight by 95%.

Launcher box in 2023
Here's the same box 55 years later. Joe gave it to me in 2023. It still weighs a ton. It's full of wrenches.
Rocket launch in Joe's driveway
Yours truly launching a rocket in Joe's driveway using the rocket launcher box. 1968 or '69.

Joe's Big Bertha 2023
In August of 2023, Bob and I found Joe's body in his dining room. The last thing I did before I left his house that day was to take his Big Bertha with me. It was 10 years old, but it only had been flown four or five times.
Big Bertha
Joe's Big Bertha lifts off on August 10, 2013.
Big Bertha parachute landing
...and returns safely to Earth.

Joe's Big Bertha 2023
Launched in October 2023 with an Estes C6-5.
The rocket is almost as old as I was when I met Joe and Jimmy.

Joe Jones and James Nolen
Joe Jones and Jim Nolen. Founding members of the A.R.O. Rest In Peace.

At this time we now conclude our broadcast day.

Analog Dial