LUNAR Launch Photos and Video

Pre-2001    2001    2002    2003    2004   SpaceshipOne   2005   2006  

LUNAR Launches Pre-2001, 2001

This photo gallery contains pictures and video submitted by LUNAR members. The pictures were taken at different launches. We have identified the launch where possible, however, by the time the pictures get to this website, the photographers are often a little hazy as to exactly which launch they took the pictures. I can usually figure out the year the picture was taken so that seems to be the safest organization for this list. Clicking on a picture will display the full size one.


NARAM 40 (August 1998) -- as reported in the LUNAR 'Clips newsletter. Lots of great photos.
LDRS XIV big rockets out in the Nevada desert...
FireBALLS 005 The really experimental stuff.


August launch. Hanging around the LCO - RSO tables.

Kevin McGrath had just launched his LOC Graduator (Well, sort of launched. He did press the launch button). The engine failed and blew the fuel pellet up into the body of the rocket where it burned through the side. As you can see from the last picture, we did save the fins.

Steve Kendall was launching his PML Phantom but didn't have a photo of it. He was afraid it might not come back so I took these just in case. As you can tell from the last picture all went well.

Tony Cooper sent up his Pinata rocket full of candy. You can just see the candy surrounding the rocket as it parachutes to the ground.

High Res (748 KB) Highest Res (2.22 MB)
These are two resolutions of a video of the Gonzo' PML Amraam 4 on an H123-S at LUNAR by Gonzalo Rodriguez


April Night Launch - Tom Hail took these pictures at the April night launch.
These first two show the first launch of the day and the first of the lighted night flights. All rockets must have lights to fly after dark. Even black powder motors look pretty extreme after dark.
Here we see a rack of night rockets ready to fly and the flight of a high-powered rocket after dark.
Under the moon and venus, Bill Orvis explains the details of rocketry to a young visitor. It is never too young to get them interested.
Getting rockets ready to fly at night takes a lot of special preparations. Not only do you have to wire your igniter, you have to make your lights work, and do it all in the dark.
The Pinata rocket heads for the sky with a load of candy.

Bill Orvis took these pictures at the April night launch. I am not sure whose rockets these are but they were on rack 1. It is the same rack of rockets as shown in Tom Hail's third picture above. If you can identify your rocket, let me know and I will give you the photo.
Love these black powder motors in the dark.
The one on the left was sitting on the pad waiting to fly. Anyone have a rocket with three red LEDs on the side. I can also see a bluish light near the top of the photo but that may be out at rack 3. The launch on the right puts a little light on the subject.
I caught the one on the left just at ignition. It was a beautiful night for a launch with only the crescent moon and Venus competing with the rockets.

September 2002 Launch
The tone of the September launch is typified by this first photo showing a Boy Scout leader and some of his scouts setting up their rockets next to pad 11. Pad 11 was a "Missing Man" this launch in remembrance of September 11, 2001.
We tried to create a St. Louis arch using two Big Berthas with crape paper taped to their fins. They were supposed to arch over towards each other with the paper following. The first time we tried it, only one rocket flew. You can see it parachuting into the middle of a Soccer game with the crape paper in tow.
The Tony Cooper's Pinata rocket flew again. This time it was filled with Snickers.
The left picture is the certification flight of Allen Kezer's PML Quasar. I'm not sure who's rocket is in the right picture.
Here are a couple of happy guys. Both Joe Pettinicchi with his PML D-Region Tomahawk and Allen Kezer with his PML Quasar successfully certified Level 1. Welcome to high power; get out your wallets!
I won this "stubby" rocket at the LUNAR auction a year ago. I have it on good authority that a NASA engineer designed it to determine if he could get stable flight with a short rocket by putting more fins on it. It flew just fine on a D12-5 and then arched over and went after the LCO.

September 29 launch at the EBRC Airshow


The Team America Challenge generated a lot of launches at LUNAR so I have put them all on their own page.
Team America Challenge page

June 2003 Launch
The June launch was a little slow this year as it overlapped other launches and came just before the Livermore Rodeo. Photos by Bill Orvis.
Paul Krystosek and his daughter Anna were there with a pair of two stagers. Paul's was actually a three stage rocket but the wind was blowing and he figured he might not find it if he used all three. As it was, Anna's pink rocket came down 10 feet from the road.
Next, we had a very interesting rocket. Actually, I am using the term very loosely here as this thing looks like something you would find at goodwill. The lampshade rocket actually flew surprisingly well considering what it was. In fact, it was too fast for me at launch but I caught it in the air.
Another interesting flight was a nicely built Saturn-V. It arced over a little, but I caught it just after the ejection charge fired and just as it hit the ground. The command module on the far right is actually still in the air.
This last one was a drag race but I don't know whose they are.

Jamie with his Fat Boy and Limiting Factor rockets. Very cool.

September 6, 2003
3D photos by Bill Orvis. Over the summer, I found my Grandfather's 3D camera in a closet. I tried it out and it works. Rockets are just the thing for 3D pictures so time for some fun. These are side by side images so just stare at them until they fuse together into one.

This first one is Paul Macke just after passing his level 1. Definitely a happy man.

Paul and his grandson make some pretty cool models.

Paul chatting about his level 1 flight.

Here we have my NASA Stubby on the pad

and in the air.

Here is my rebuilt Saturn V after its crash on Evening Magazine last spring.

And away it goes. A perfect flight.

Saturn V and a friend.

Dual Pinata rockets ready to go.

Well, one got off the pad. The other followed in a couple of seconds.

Something high powered heading for the sky.

A beautiful red rocket just before it splatted next to the safety inspection tables.

Chris Burgess got some videos of three of the launches including the Pinata launch.

First is a video of Tony Cooper's pinata rockets (on H180 and H242 power). It also includes the kids who moved almost as fast as the rockets to get the candy.

Next is a video of Jack Hagerty's Alway Backslider.

Last is a video of the Big Red scratch built on a H128 that had a less than perfect recovery. You can see that it had a 10 second delay (AeroTech medium), and was heading back down at a good speed when the delay charge burned out (right around the time that someone yelled incoming).

All images on this page by William Orvis unless otherwise labeled. Next
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