I’ll never forget the Christmas morning when I opened my brand new Estes Alpha Starter Kit. It was a cold morning in 1970 and nothing brightened the day more than this starter kit(pictured above). The smell of the balsa and the shiny Electro-Launch foretold of many great launches to come. The starter kit has been the introduction to rocketry to many budding rocketeers. Many versions have been released over the years and this gallery represents images from a few of those. If you have pictures you would like to add email me.
In 1961 Estes added the “Beginner’s Special” . It included an Astron Scout Kit, Design Booklet, B8-4 motor,A8-3 motor, A8-2 motor and an Electro-Launch electrical firing system all for the bargain price of $5.00!
Here is the similar system from 1963
Estes from 1968
Centuri from 1969 -was still a bargain at $6.95
1970-80s Estes Range Boxes
In the 1970s many Starter Kits were packaged in a cardboard range box so that the contents were portable. Gone were the high quality range boxes of the 1960s as the age of cardboard approached.Who could forget carrying the range box to the field for the first time.
1972 Enerjet Starter Kit
Cox Starter Kit 1972
Contents of the Estes 1976 starter kit
1970s MPC Starter Kit
1983 Centuri Shuttle Starter Kit
A current Quest Starter Kit
Current Quest Starter Kits can be found here
Current Estes Starter Kits can be found here