back to article Vulture 1 Mk 2 release mech prepped for testing

The Paper Aircraft Released Into Space (PARIS) team is preparing to turn down the pressure with a second visit to QinetiQ's hypobaric chamber. You'll recall that our first attempt to put together a pressure-operated release mechanism for the Vulture 1 aircraft didn't quite run on rails. Undaunted, we stuck with our plan to …


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  1. Dr. Mouse

    Good luck

    Loving the P.A.R.I.S. project

  2. Christoph

    "top-class piece of British engineering"

    How can it be proper British engineering when you have omitted the most vital component of such engineering - the sticky-backed plastic?

    1. D@v3
      Thumb Up


      wax string and gaffer tape.

      None the less, brilliant project, keep up the good work

  3. Billy 7

    A tiny suggestion

    If it isn't too impertinent, could I suggest that you make where the eyelet joins the "hanging shaft" as smooth a possible to prevent it snagging upon release. From the pictures it looks like you have formed it by bending the wire back round itself. You could use solder to smooth over the join and then file it smooth to make sure there are no protrusions to snag in the release hole in the trunking. It would be a real shame if the expansion system worked, the pin pulls out and then the payload drops a millimetre or two but no more because it has snagged.

    1. Lester Haines (Written by Reg staff) Gold badge

      Re: A tiny suggestion

      Not impertinent at all. All suggestions are always welcome.

    2. Christoph

      I can see it now

      Cue the obvious El Reg headline about the payload, explaining that they couldn't get it up because it was completely snagged.

  4. Code Monkey

    Garden shed bodgery

    Lovely garden shed bodgery, Reg. $DEITY bless Vulture 1

  5. Robin Baker
    Thumb Up

    should go to Specsavers..

    Oh, SNagged, with my old monitor and even older eyes S's and H's look very similar.

    But all hail to Vulture Central for keeping alive British stick and string aircraft manufacture, I've been in the industry for nigh on 40 years and this loks like the most interesting thing going at the moment.


  6. ElderOp

    more simple and less mechanical...

    Simple Baloon Release Mechanism

    An idea for a more simple, less mechanical, possibly more reliable release mechanism. A baloon (long skinny as used for making baloon animals or hats) in a clear glass or plastic tube, open to the atmosphere, a valve in the inflating end to pressurize, the baloon painted black at the other end to block light from an LED to a light sensor. When the baloon expands linearly along the tube to block the light path through or just outside the tube, it would cause an electro-magnetic latch to release the package. It would take some experimenting and calibration to find the proper size tube and baloon, and amount of pressure to make it work reliably... but, certainly more simple and less mechanical, possibly smaller and lighter, too.

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  8. DI_Wyman

    Vulture 1 Mk 2 release....... mech prepped for testing

    .......mech prepped for testing.

    Splendid stuff, fingers crossed you don't have to go to the expense of a Mk 3.


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