|Randell Redd is know far and wide among rocket hobbyists for his strange rockets. There are not many people who will fly a fire hydrant, jelly fish, giant carrot, and flying saucer at the same launch. Randell has done just that. Randell was born in Salt Lake City, but was raised in California and Virginia. His interest in rocketry began in the 1960s when he saw an ad in a Popular Science magazine for a hobby rocket company. He sent away for the catalog and got started. During high school, Randell became very active in his school rocket club where he built a variety of scratch built rockets along with many kits including a Space Plane which he still owns. His favorite childhood rocket was a Farside X, a nice three stage rocket with a large payload section.
Randell dropped out of rocketry for a short time until he moved back to Utah. As an adult, a local scoutmaster asked him to help the scout troop with their rocketry merit badge. Randell became hooked on the hobby again. Shortly after he met Matt Steele, the founder of who was then starting his own small rocket company. Matt encouraged Randell to attend the NARAM 5 launch held at Clayton County Air Force Base. Randell attended, but wasnt allowed to participate in launching rockets. Harry Stein, the father of model rocketry, was in attendance along with many other notable rocket figures. NARAM and the National Association of Rocketry intrigued Randell because of the many rocket contests held at the event. Randell promised himself he would attend the following year. The next year Randell attended both LDRS 5 (Large and Dangerous Rocket Ships) and NARAM 6 within a two week period. LDRS was held in Colorado that year whereas NARAM was held in Ohio. The following year Randell joined Tripoli as member number 300.
The biggest thrill for Randell is creating and designing his own rockets. To Randell, its not all about who has the biggest rocket or the highest impulse motor; its about ingenuity and experimentation. Although he has flown K motors, the majority of his rockets fall into the I motor class size. Picture a giant 48 inch tall, six inch diameter orange carrot rocket powered by an AeroTech I211w motor! Or, imagine a Marvin the Martian flying saucer boosting on an AeroTech I154j!
Randell claims the best launch site he has ever seen is Black Rock, Nevada. Randell tries to get to the annual Black Rock launches on a regular basis. When asked about his favorite rocket motor, he replies Well that would have to be the AeroTech J350W. I like the J350 because it packs a lot of power for its size. When asked what advice he gives new rocketeers, he answers, Fly with a friend. Its a lot more fun that flying by yourself. Having fun is what this hobby is all about!
Randell is currently working on several upscale Science Fiction style rockets based on old movies like Flash Gordon. He comes up with his designs by using old movies transferred to video, pausing the film, and making sketches. Randell claims he is going not so much for scale accuracy as for catching the mood of the model space ship. We are sure his new projects will be every bit as entertaining as what we have seen in the past.