Mercury Little Joe I - Estes

Mandatory in your collection: NASA's Mercury Little Joe I was a historic carrier for the American space program.

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The Mercury Little Joe I was designed in the 1960s in order to test the innumerable aspects connected with the launch of human beings in space. It was a simple, inexpensive, solid fuel rocket that carried a Mercury capsule to test safety, release and recovery devices with parachutes.

This rocket kit by Estes is a 1:34 scale reproduction that flies with 18 mm motors type B or C (but also D9 by Klima). Includes the Mercury plastic capsule with the rescue system tower, nozzles, laser-cut balsa stabilizers, decals and of course the parachute.

The construction is interesting because it includes parts made of plastic, balsa and cardboard, to be assembled in different ways. The fins, for example, consist of several parts joined in a "sandwich" construction. Like almost all scale models, it is not suitable for beginners due to the various difficulties in construction and decoration.

What you need to build it (not included):

  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Abrasive paper (grain 220 and 400)
  • Wood glue (aliphatic recommended)
  • Polistyrene glue
  • Sanding block
  • Cutter
  • Masking tape
  • Paints

What you need to fly it (not included):

  • Launchpad Klima or Estes Porta-Pad II with 3 mm launch rod
  • Klima or Estes Electron Beam launch controller, with batteries.
  • Engines (see recommended engines)
  • Spare ignitors
  • Flameproof wadding or protective sheets for the parachute.

WHAT YOU NEED TO BUILD IT: Scissors, pencil, ruler, fine sandpaper, carpenter’s glue, plastic cement, hobby knife, masking tape, primer, paint. (Tools, construction and finishing supplies not included.)

WHAT YOU NEED TO LAUNCH IT (sold separately): Estes Porta-Pad II Launch Pad or Klima Launch Pad with 5 mm launch rod, Estes Electron Beam Launch Controller or Klima Launch Controller, model rocket engines, starters and recovery wadding.
Four 1.5V high quality AA alkaline batteries are also required for launch controller (not included).

Data sheet

44.8 cm
59 mm
90.7 g
Motor mount
18 mm
Plastic parachute 38 cm
Launch pad
With 3 mm launch rod
Recommended Engines
Estes B4-4, B6-4, C6-3, C6-5; Klima B4-4, C6-3, C6-5, D9-5