November 9, 2009

Wow, been a bit since my last post. I’ve mostly been waiting on things to be delivered. Let’s see where things are at now.

First, the parachute arrived today! I haven’t had a good look at it just yet, but hopefully it will meet my needs and bring everything back down to earth safely. Total cost was $27 with shipping on eBay.I also managed to pick up a Duracell My Pocket Charger, used, from Amazon. I paid $10 for it, but when it arrived, the adapter to let it work with the i290 was missing, and a check for $10 was included as a refund! Lucky for me, I’ve been in contact with someone nearby who is also doing their own launch, and they had a spare charger. I bought the adapter from them for $4, so that makes the total cost pretty good on that.

The external antenna also came in, but I’m still waiting on the adapter. Speaking of, I’ve had two people ask me now if I managed to figure out how the external antenna connects to the phone. If you take the back cover off the phone and check the lower right corner, there’s a little black shiny plastic rectangle. If you peel that off with a screwdriver or knife or something, the U.FL connector is behind it.

I also managed to get a UV filter for the camera; $20 new on eBay. It came with a polarizing filter and lens hood as well. I’m not sure how useful it will really be, hopefully the extra cost will translate into crisper images!

I really really need to get pictures of everything up, I’m just so bad at remembering to take pictures during the day, and anything I take at night comes out terrible. I’ll try to get some taken tomorrow. Speaking of tomorrow, I really need to give Kaymont a call as well. Once the adapter comes in, all that is left is the balloon, the helium, and the cooler! Looking at a launch before the end of the month perhaps!

  1. Hey man,

    Came across your website looking to find out how to connect an extra antenna to my i290 boostmobile phone for the big launch. My concern is that I live in a rural area and the coverage for boostmobile doesn’t extend very far from the interstate. Hopefully I can hook up a nifty antenna and extend the range…I also live in a wooded area and it could literally be lost out in the middle of nowhere….not good for a first flight. Anyway, check out my website and hopefully we can both launch soon. My 200g balloons came in today…

    I’ve also been reading the hydrogen has 10% more lift capacity vs. helium. Yes, I know, I know the Hindenburg didn’t turn out so well, but I have no intention on starting to smoke cigars or cigarettes, and where this balloon is going, there isn’t enough oxygen to start a fire…

    Plus, these are really small amounts of hydrogen, and the only way I can imagine it would ignite is if:

    a) lightning strikes my balloon….out of nowhere
    b) Zeus sends down a firebolt to punish me for trying to take pictures of space.
    c) My balloon gets caught on a power line and triggers an arc. Then things get nasty from there…

    Point is, I just read an article from 1924 talking about how hydrogen isn’t really that dangerous if you take certain precautions. When made and handled correctly, it’s fairly safe and has 10% more lift.

    THe apparatus to produce hydrogen safely and get it into a balloon is in the works…I have part of it complete, but there is one more thing I need to take care of….

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