Note: Only forum leaders may delete posts.
*HTML is ON
*UBB Code is ON
The crowd which had assembled for the ceremony soon dispersed. We went back to the car to deposit some goodies we'd acquired during the Rocket Roll. By the time we returned to the tent, everyone had left other than Al Whitaker (media relations manager for the USSRC) and Konrad and Jackie Dannenberg.
Jackie is very friendly and introduced herself right away. She's very knowledgeable about space-related topics; she used to drive a USSRC tour bus over to Marshall and knows several astronauts, and we all chatted while the work men continued working on the S-IC. Al had a lot of stories to tell, both about the USSRC and about his various media-related jobs. Konrad, well, is Konrad Dannenberg! He also kept a watchful eye on "the most important part" of the Saturn.
The crew rearranged the jacking and positioned the crawlers under both the aft and forward ends of the S-IC.
The crawlers are certainly impressive pieces of machinery. They have six sets of wheels, each of which can be individually steered and positioned vertically. The aft crawler was double-wide (apparently two crawlers which had been mechanically and electrically fastened together), while the forward crawler consisted of a single unit.
While they had laid a good layer of gravel as part of the site improvements, the rain was causing some of the wheels on the crawler to slip, so they wound up putting down steel plating and plywood to form a more stable surface.
While one group of workers began lashing the S-IC to the crawlers, another group began jacking up the S-II stage.
The second stage, unlike the S-IC, was not on its original transporter. While it still had its forward handling ring on it, both the forward and aft ends of the stage rested on shallow cradles, and were clamped to the cradles.
The process of jacking up the stage consisted of digging out a hollow spot under the cradle so that they could insert a hydraulic ram. The hydraulic cylinder extended out the bottom of the ram, and the crew inserted the "Jenga blocks" underneath. They retracted the cylinders, repositioned the rams so that the cylinder would rest on the jacking ties, and repeated the process.
Somewhere along the line, Irene Willhite, curator of the USSRC, came out to observe the activities. Irene was also very friendly and we had a great time chatting with her.
And so Tuesday, July 10 ended without either the S-IC or S-II moving.
It was expected that the first stage would be moved on July 10, and there were various media representatives who came and went throughout the day. One TV camera crew, without having a moving rocket to report, interviewed Konrad instead. Even though he's long since retired, Konrad is still something of a celebrity. In addition to that TV interview, he also had another film crew interview him somewhere along the line. Whether being interviewed about the V2 or the Saturn, or whether just chatting about taking his grandkids down to see the STS-1 launch, he still remembers every detail.
Contact Us | The Source for Space History & Artifacts
Copyright 2019 collectSPACE.com All rights reserved.