Fincan Tech

The GLR Fin Cans are a rare combination of an excellent performing product, price point which cannot be beat with easy availability.  In my years of being around these products, I have only seen two fail, neither was faulty products.  The first failure was an on pad Hypertech motor CATO in which the entire lower half of the rocket was lost.  The second occurred when a rocket booster fell from altitude without recovery and landed on rocks, breaking off a fin.  The most spectacular example of it's strength was demonstrated to me in 2001 at LDRS/Amarillo, Texas.  A flyer attempting a level two flight purchased all the necessary parts to build a rocket on a Friday, including the 38mm fin can, and then fly the next day.   It was a simple 38mm airframe, nosecone, fin can and internals flying on a J350 Aerotech reload.  The location where we flew was hot and dry with the ground as hard as concrete.   The flight up was normal with no surprises, but for some reason, there was no ejection or deployment so the rocket came in "hot and fast"landing out in the pad area.  About an hour later the rocket owner told me I needed to see the results out in the field and indicated it's location.  Upon arrival, all you could see was approximately eighteen inches of airframe sticking out of the "rock-hard" pasture.  Looking closer though, I noticed the 38mm Acme fin can had broken loose from the airframe upon impact and slid down the airframe to slam into the ground until it was flush with ground level.  It created a perfect profile of it's shape in the ground.  Eventually, the owner dug the remains out of the ground, salvaging only the fincan and motor hardware.  After washing off the undamaged fin can, he immediately re-used it in another design, no worse for the wear.