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Model Rocket Club, Section #139
Serving Maryland and the Washington Metropolitan Area
2000 - 2001 and 2003 - 2004 National Championship Section


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Last modified:
6/5/2014 18:59:43

The NARHAMS model rocket club serves Maryland and the Washington Metropolitan Area. The club is an official chapter section of the National Association of Rocketry (NAR). First established in 1965, NARHAMS is the oldest continuously operating model rocket club in the United States and was named Section of the Year for 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2004, 2006, and 2007. We are also the National Championship section for 2001 and 2004.

Next Launch: Nov 2, 1:00 pm
Greenbelt, MD
Next Meeting: Nov 1, 5:00 pm
College Park, MD

50th Anniversary

NARHAMS will be hosting a 50th anniversary celebration on March 7, 2015. See the event page for more details and to RSVP.

Meeting Location Change

We're moving again! Starting with the October 4 meeting, we will be moving back to College Park Airport. Since the operations building where we were before is currently occupied by construction crews, we will be meeting in the Hap Arnold building. To get there, turn left at the airport entrance, and follow the road around the field toward the Metro tracks. Hap Arnold is the little blue house at the end of the road before you reach the hangars.

HQSM-45 Announced

HQSM-45 will be held as a Section Meet on October 18, 2014 at Mt. Airy, MD. This meet has only 2 events: Radio Controlled Glider and A Streamer Duration. There is no entry fee, and all NAR members are encouraged to participate for one or both events. Don Carson is the Contest Director.

Radio Controlled Glider is described in Rule 62 of the US Sport Modeling Code. The model must be radio conrolled, but can launch on any contest approved motor. The contestant picks a target time in 30 second increments between 30 seconds and 8 minutes (ie, you can pick 30, 60, 90, 120, etc seconds, but nothing in between). The objective is to keep your model in the air for your selected time, then land as close as possible to a predetermined spot on the ground. Normally, your score would be the sum over 3 flights, but for this contest, we are making a special provision that only 1 flight is allowed.

A Streamer Duration is described in Rule 31. The model must use an A-powered motor, cannot separate into 2 or more disconnected parts, and must recover using a streamer. The streamer can be made of any material, but must be at least 5 times longer than it is wide. It can only be attached to the model at one point. The longest total duration over 2 flights is the winner.

As as added bonus for this contest, we will be awarding a special prize to the best single flight in each event from someone who has not competed in that event before.

New Launch Pads

New launch pads are in, and looking good in NARHAMS blue! Thanks to Jef Fineran for taking care of the ordering, and to the NAR for providing some of the funding through the section grant program. Look for the new pads at a launch soon!

NARHAMS in the News

We got a nice mention in Carroll Magazine recently, with quotes from Jim Miers, Alex Mankevich, and Mark Wise. Check out the full article!

Upcoming Launches

October 18, Mt. Airy
This is our monthly sport launch at Mt. Airy, MD. We are also holding a NAR-sanctioned contest launch with Radio-Controlled Glider and A Streamer Duration events. Don Carson is the contest director. There is no cost to enter. Ribbons will be awarded for to places in each division. Medals will also be awarded to top new competitors in each event.

November 2, Goddard
This is the monthly launch at Goddard Visitor Center in Greenbelt, MD.

Upcoming Meetings

November 1, College Park
The November meeting features our annual planning session to decide events for 2015. Come with ideas on how to make NARHAMS better! Note that the meeting location is at College Park Airport Hap Arnold building.

Goddard Launches Waiver Update

Our waiver for launches at Goddard Visitor Center has been renewed through June 6, 2015. We will continue with our normal launch schedule on the first Sunday of the month at 1 pm. Special thanks to John Hochheimer, Jennifer Ash-Poole, Jim Filler, and Ed Pearson for working with the FAA and TSA to get a waiver approved for our launches. With that waiver come new restrictions: flights are now limited to D impulse motors and 2000 feet altitude.


Meetings are usually held on the first Saturday of each month, starting at 5:30 pm, at the College Park Airport. The first part of the meeting will be a building session or discussion. The business meeting will start around 7 pm, and will end around 9 pm. Any leftover items will get discussed over a late dinner at Ledo's.

The next scheduled meeting is November 1



Club launches are held on the third Saturday of every month, weather permitting, at Old National Pike Park in Mt. Airy, Maryland. The field can support up to G-powered motors with the appropriate FAA waivers. Launch times vary throughout the year, so be sure to check the Calendar for details. Our launches are always open to non-club members who wish to fly.

Directions to Mt. Airy Field

NARHAMS also supports the oldest public demonstration launches in the United States. These launches are held on the first Sunday of each month at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, starting at 1 pm. Anyone who wishes to fly at these events may do so. Due to the limited recovery area, the flying of high power models and untested designs is discouraged. The impulse limit at Goddard is D engine or less.

Directions to Goddard

Becoming a Member

If this sounds like fun, why not become a member? Dues are only 10 cents a week, with 50 cents minimum required to join. Download the membership form and send it in today!

Please note that to be eligible to vote at club meetings or to compete as a member of NARHAMS, you must also:
a) be a current member of the NAR
b) attend at least one of the previous 3 monthly business meetings

Mailing List

The NARHAMS-members Yahoo group is primarily for NARHAMS members to discuss upcoming events related to the club. Non-club members are free to join in the discussion, but please keep the postings at least somewhat related to model rocketry.

Subscribe to narhams-members

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Additional Information

NARHAMS President
Alex Mankevich

NARHAMS Section Advisor
Mark Wise
P.O. Box 8507
Washington, DC 20032

National Association of Rocketry
P.O. Box 407
Marion, IA 52302
Sign up for the NAR's electronic newsletter here

Public Launches at Goddard
NASA Goddard Visitor Center