Mercury Capsule and Escape Tower
for the Polecat 5.5" Kit.
Note: I will be offering a 6" version of this a bit later on.
Update After some field testing it was demonstrated that the base of the struts were not strong enough and needed reinforcements. Two changes were added to beef up this area.
Update- Using Fusion 360, I designed an improved and more 'rugged' 808 Camera sled. Camera_Sled_v2.stl. Naturally, if you've already downloaded the full build, you only need to download this one part
I found this beautiful model of a Mercury Capsule done by Scott Mills and used that for the foundation of this model. If you decide you want to tip me, please instead tip Scott for his brilliant detail work on the capsule, thank you!.
I designed the tower for a friend who had the Polecat Redstone - typically flown without the tower because there was a concern it would be damaged during recovery.
I also wanted to give him the option of a camera to record the flight, so I designed the Video Tower. Like other payloads I've designed the tower uses a stripped down MateCAM 808 camera. If you don't want the video option, there is a 'basic tower' you can print and fly.
The version he flew sat atop the original Polecat capsule (very plane) and the chute was tucked into the main airframe.
In the collection of parts above you'll find the tower base that is designed to fit the original Polecat capsule
If your printer can support the Z volume of the full tower - you can print it as one piece without supports.
Printing the capsule shell is probably the most complicated part in that I wanted to use perimeters to define the wall thickness, not a modeled wall thickness. So I used Simplify 3D with multiple processes to print it without a top and bottom cap. This is why I included a S3D factory file in the 'kit'.
Extra parts you will need
• .039 Music wire cut to cut to 3 - 6 7/8” lengths and one 2 ¼” lengths
• 5 - 1¼” long ¼” bolts with matching wing nuts
• 4 – Servo Mounting Screws – I like the Spektrum black socket head ones
• 5 ¾” section of 54mm motor mount tubing
• MateCam 808 camera
Printing the full tower actually does use supports however only in the horizontal struts so I built a custom support that helps with the print. I've included a special Simplify 3D factory file for my Ender 3 with supports setup.
When printing the camera sled, supports are mandatory.
Here is video from the first launch of the Redstone with the video tower
NOTE: This model is not scale, it has been designed to be aesthetically pleasing to the eye and to be functional in flight.