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Nsw Laws About Water Rocketry?

Posted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 7:02 pm
by Laurie
Hi everyone, this is my first post on this page and i have one question. After searching the web for a while for regulations, laws and products about water bottle rocketry i had found little to nothing. :cry:

I did find a few shops that sold something called the "Aqua Pod" which i had as a kid so i looked into, but i was wondering if there were any laws about constructing (and instruction links if it is legal) a low powered water bottle launcher and if there were any laws about constructing small water bottle rockets such as the ones i had previously done at my school for a stem project such as length, weight, altitude, materials and locations.

Also does anyone know any products sold in Sydney, online or the Illawarra region for beginners as i would deeply like to get into the hobby.

Thanks for your time :D

Re: Nsw Laws About Water Rocketry?

Posted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 1:31 pm
by air.command
Hi Laurie and welcome to the forum.
You are right there are no clear regulations relating to water rockets specifically as far as I know. In their absence we follow the regulations specified for normal model rockets. This includes total impulse limits, altitude limits, proximity to airports, etc. The only difference we go by is that the weight limit applies to the dry rocket + weight of compressed air. Normal model rocket total weight includes the weight of the propellant. We do this for two reasons. 1) Because a 2L bottle of coke would be classified as a high power rocket (weighs more than 1.5Kg) which is a bit silly and 2) water really isn't the propellant, the air is. So you need to include the weight of the compressed air (this can be 10's of grams to 100's of grams) depending on pressure and volume of the pressure chamber. All other rules and regulations apply as covered in the CASA documentation. (
If you are flying with a club then club rules also apply. As always it is good to also follow the general rocketry safety code.

As far as I am aware there are no laws about constructing any kind of rocket even HPR ones, where regulations come in are in the purchasing/handling and storing of propellants (motors) AND actually flying the rockets. So no problem building any kind of water rocket.

There are a number of commercial launchers available, and the AquaPod works quite well. Though I would suggest building your own launcher out of some PVC pipe. Look for "Clark Cable-tie launcher" on Google and you will find plenty of examples of how to build them. In general water rocketry tends to be more of a DIY type of hobby and so people will build the rockets and launchers themselves rather than buy commercial kits. You can start out very simply with a single bottle and some fins and go from there. For most commercial water rocketry type components you would probably need to buy on-line as you get a much better choice than from a local store supplier.

I am happy to provide links to specific components or tutorials if you like. Let me know what things you are interested in.

- George

Re: Nsw Laws About Water Rocketry?

Posted: Fri Dec 08, 2017 3:59 pm
by Laurie
Thanks George that was very helpful!
I have now looked into the zip tie/pvc launcher design and once i have finished the design i will start construction. I have access to building supplies and have a basic knowledge of pvc pipe projects so the constructions should go well.

I am also in the process of joining the NSW Rocketry Association with a family member as i am also interested in the use and construction of solid state rockets. Thank you very much for your time.